As we enter the fall months of the year, it is traditionally the time that many of our long-time youth education programs get started. In our next Newsletter, you will learn about one of those, the
FARMS Leadership Program
, and our exciting new growth to many new communities in California, including Santa Cruz and Monterey counties.
But, for this newsletter, I wanted to share some more good news - that is, a story from one of our alumni (Cesar Cardenas), and the impact that multiple years of programming with Center for Land-Based Learning has had on his life. This summer, we embarked on a new pilot program, funded by Wells Fargo, called the
"Central Valley Youth Employment Program (CVYP)"
. This program served 21 students in the rural counties of Colusa, Yuba, and Sutter, as well as students in the small town of Woodlake, in Tulare County. We identified students who had participated in our FARMS Leadership Program (Year 1), as well as FARMS Leadership Advanced (Year 2, a deeper dive into agriculture and natural resource careers), to participate. We have heard from employers up and down the state, but particularly in the Central Valley, that prepared, competent, motivated employees are hard to find.
Center for Land-Based Learning is stepping up to the plate to connect the best of our students to the best employers. Agriculture and natural resource careers are rapidly changing - and we are there to help the workforce develop these new pathways. Through strategic partnerships throughout the state, focusing most heavily on Fresno, Tulare, Kings, and Kern, we are working one-on-one with agricultural businesses that need our services. They offer job shadows and paid internships, and we prepare our high school participants for these opportunities. Due to our partnership with
My Job Depends on Ag
, we can offer scholarships to the graduates of the FARMS Advanced Program, and continue to help and support them throughout their journey.
This is best understood by reading Cesar's own words: "You could say I have really taken advantage of the programs that cared about seeing me succeed. By completing all three of these programs, I feel more prepared than ever to go to college, finish my education and build a career in Fire Science." Congratulations on your success so far, Cesar, and we look forward to helping you further develop your career path in the years to come!