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Conference Name Next Generation of Female Farmers Engaging in a Sustainable and Competitive Agriculture

Gladys González

Summary

Ten years after its inception, the Entrepreneurship Center for Women in Puerto Rico's Agriculture addressed the opportunity to increase environmentally sound farming activities, mainly by providing education and opportunities to young women. A group of participants enrolled in a two semester, 45 contact hours course each, to receive education in best farm management and best resource conservation practices with gender perspective during the calendar year 2018. The multi campus team of educators included faculty from UPR-Mayaguez College of Agricultural Sciences and College of Arts and Science, UPR-Aguadilla, UPR-RĂ­o Piedras, UPR-Medical Sciences Campus and Pontifical Catholic University-Mayaguez including the fields of agricultural economics, soil science, animal science, plant science, microbiology, sociology, political science, gender studies, public health and political science. Twenty five percent of participants were undergraduate and graduate students who were granted college academic credit (3 credit hours). The requirements for the young women included, in addition to attending all the topic presentations, home works and quizzes for each topic, drafting a business and marketing plan, participating in a field trip, keeping a reflective diary and shadowing for at least three half-days a female farmer mentor. Pretest and post test were administered and results are being analyzed. An additional educational activity will take place in the summer of 2019 and data on adoption of practices learned will be collected.

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