Learn About Careers in Horticulture with Susan Yoder

I am teacher at a Project Based Learning School that has a huge agriculture component, plus I have a daughter that is the Agriculture Manager at an educational farm in Colorado – yes, she is a working farmer!  But even with all of these ties to the Ag world – I have never given a lot of thought to the industry of horticulture.

Learn About Careers in Horticulture with Susan Yoder

Low and behold, horticulture is a huge sector of our economy and there are many, many career opportunities that are begging for qualified applicants. I am not just talking about farming here, horticulture spans the alphabet. Everything from A to Z, arborist to zoological horticulture falls under this umbrella. We are talking everything from science, to art, technology, and management.

Learn About Careers in Horticulture with Susan Yoder

Here today to tell us about a new initiative called BLOOM is Susan Yoder, the Executive Director of Seed Your Future.

Check out the interview and many of my farm photos. I know how much kids love to garden – and here are some great resources for you to explore. 

Here are a few snippets from the interview, but Susan shares so much more during the interview:

Susan, tell me about this initiative. What is your goal with BLOOM!?

We are living in a time of great disconnection with plants. Plants are everywhere but nowhere on most people’s minds. This plant blindness is especially significant among our young people  Bloom is a new vibrant initiative that is a youth focused campaign for young people to unlock their potential, and to introduce them to a lifelong passion for plants and maybe even a career in horticulture – which is the art, science, technology, and the business of plants. Bloom! is the movement to improve the world through the power of plants

Who is behind this campaign?

Over 150 organizations are behind this campaign. The first initiative is this youth focused campaign to bring the world of horticulture to kids.

How is BLOOM! teaching youth about horticulture? What resources are available?

There is a digital hub that is youth focused that includes all kinds of exciting activities for kids – lots of research has gone into this site which includes videos, games, and quizzes. Kids can find their own plant power. The hub helps them understand their vast possibilities in horticulture.

There are also adult resources for adults that work with kids every day – teachers, parents, youth program leaders to help them unlock their plant power. There are many downloadable resources to use.

What exactly does a horticulturist do?

A horticulturist is the term for over 100 different careers – art, science, business, and technology. First find out what kids are interested in through Bloom. Horticulturist are working together to solve some of the worlds biggest problems – healthy food for everyone, pollution, health care, safe water, and even helping athletes with safe playing fields.

I never imagined one of my children growing up to become a farmer – there is a resurgence of farming as a career for a number of young adults, is this a good sign for BLOOM!?

It absolutely is a good sign! There is an interest in a lot of plant based movements – farm to table, community gardens, but what is missing is the connection to careers in horticulture. This is what we are trying to help children make a connection to

Looking down the road, 10- 15 years, does the future look very different for horticulturalists?

58,000 jobs are expected to become available every year for the next five years but only 61 percent are expected to be filled. That is causing a significant gap in the industry and one of the main reasons Seed Your Future was born. There are not enough qualified candidates pursuing careers.  it is one of those fields that if people saw what was available they would get excited about the possibilities.

You can find some great information at WeAreBloom.org and SeedYourFuture.org  

 

 

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