Secondary school students in the Latrobe Valley will swap the classroom for the farm and get their hands dirty while learning important skills in the areas of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) after AGL Loy Yang announced a $25,000 partnership with Bass Coast Landcare Network this week.
Under the partnership Bass Coast Landcare Network will deliver the 'Managing Sustainable Farms Using STEM' pilot program designed to introduce students in years seven to ten to sustainable land management and the ways that science, technology, engineering and maths are used to run a profitable farming enterprise.
On Tuesday 31st of October, year 7 students from St Paul’s Anglican Grammar School and year 8 students from Kurnai College Churchill travelled to Peter Devonshire’s Budgeree farm to take part in the launch of the program and learn more about sustainable farming. Check out this video below for media coverage of the day.
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AGL Loy Yang general manager Steve Rieniets said the partnership between AGL and Bass Coast Landcare Network would provide Latrobe Valley students with valuable education on agribusiness in a practical way.
“As the Latrobe Valley transitions away from coal it’s important that we at AGL invest in ways we can help the region grow and diversify,” Mr Rieniets said.
“Gippsland’s economy is predominantly based around natural resources and commodities and this has meant coal mining has been a key industry but alongside this is agriculture with over a third of Gippsland’s businesses involved in this sector.”
Mr Rieniets said the Managing Sustainable Farms Using STEM program would open students’ eyes to the career possibilities in agriculture.
Experienced Landcare staff will take students through programs covering planning, managing vegetation, pest plants and animals, water and soils.
The program, linked to the Victorian curriculum, will introduce students to options in further study and careers in the agricultural sector.