Northeast Teacher Named 'AgriScience Ambassador' | Best Of
Lula Curry Williams, an agriscience teacher at Northeast High School, successfully completed the 11th annual DuPont National AgriScience Teachers Ambassador Academy (NATAA) at the company’s Chesapeake Farms in Chestertown, Md., this summer. Upon receiving the certificate of completion, Ms. Curry Williams became an “Ag Ambassador,” joining the 228 other outstanding teachers who, over the past decade, have attended NATAA and earned that designation.
The NATAA “Ag Academy” is a professional development institute sponsored by DuPont and is a special project of the National FFA Foundation and the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE). This year, 48 highly recommended agriscience teachers were selected to engage in inquiry based activities, where they explored innovative teaching concepts in a classroom setting and spent the majority of the training time applying what they learned outside the classroom through real-world, hands-on activities on Chesapeake Farms' 3,300-acre working farm.
Ms. Curry Williams has been a teacher at Northeast for 20 years and has taught Floral Design, Floriculture Production, Horticulture, Nursery & Landscape Design, and Agriscience.
"It meant a lot to me to be able to attend the NATAA," she said. "It was a once in a lifetime experience. I got the chance to network with agricultural teachers from all over the United States. NATAA taught me the miracles of science and other teaching strategies."
By bringing these new learning experiences back to the classroom, teachers make the learning experience for their students more intriguing and fun, so students are motivated to learn more about agriscience and its role in helping create a healthier, more sustainable future.
“Making sure we have enough healthy, nutritious food to feed a rapidly growing global population is one of the greatest challenges that the world faces today,” said Rik L. Miller, President of DuPont Crop Protection. “The ongoing work of the Ag Academy helps us take a significant step toward meeting that challenge, as it embodies both the professional development required and the enthusiasm necessary to help students flourish in agriscience-related fields.”
In addition to applying new teaching techniques in the classroom, Ag Ambassadors also present workshops to their peers. In the past 10 years, about 12,000 teachers across the U.S. including Puerto Rico and Alaska have participated. In all, Ag Ambassadors have had a direct impact on tens of thousands of students.