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News Release

NRCS Launches Youth Conservation Academy

NRCS Youth Academy kick off event in Miami

Release No. 032013

Gainesville, FL., January 29, 2012 – The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) announces a new program designed to attract outstanding young people to careers in conservation. The announcement was made at a kick-off event at the TERRA Environmental Research Institute attended by NRCS officials, school administrators, Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden staff and students. (pictured right)

“The aim of the NRCS Youth Conservation Academy is to develop the next generation of conservation leaders that truly reflect the diversity of the communities we serve,” said Roney Gutierrez, NRCS Acting State Conservationist for Florida. The program provides students with hands-on experiential learning opportunities and supports mentoring relationships with NRCS employees.

The NRCS Youth Conservation Academy– Project GROW Initiative is a partnership administered by Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden and hosted by TERRA Environmental Research Institute, a magnet high school of Miami-Dade County Public Schools. NRCS employees will provide workshops and presentations in conjunction with the Fairchild Garden staff. The inaugural class consists of approximately 30 students that will complete a challenging educational program geared toward conservation of our natural resources.

Through this partnership NRCS will also provide mentors for the Terra High School students. These mentors will be available to assist the students with the program and offer them valuable career information.

NRCS strives to help people conserve, maintain and improve our natural resources and environment. The agency provides exciting career opportunities to students and recent graduates that want to help in reducing soil erosion, conserving our water and improving its quality, and developing pride in our country's natural resource heritage. Additional information on NRCS and conservation assistance is available on the web atwww.fl.nrcs.usda.gov  or at your local USDA - NRCS office.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.

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