(Secaucus, NJ–March 17, 2021) Camille Garcia, Emily Guevara, Alma Madlener, Reilley Peck, Rimsha Reem, and Roxolana Hreb—all seniors in the Environmental Science and Sustainability academy at HTHS—attended the 2022 World Food Prize event on March 11, where they presented their research papers on global food security issues, announced Ms. Kathy Young, Principal of High Tech High School.
The event, which was hosted virtually by the New Jersey Youth Institute at Rutgers’ School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, is a way for high school students to learn about critical global issues, engage in hands-on-activities, and explore exciting ways to become effective change agents in their own communities. To prepare for the event, students selected a country and topic (ranging from water scarcity to policy and governance) to research in order to trace the diverse impacts on food security. Students then developed solutions to achieve food security in light of these global food insecurity issues. Their findings were presented at roundtable discussions consisting of peers, professionals and scholars from the New Jersey Youth Institute World Food Prize conference.
After their roundtable presentations, each student received a certificate which declared them Borlaug Scholars, an honor that commemorates Norman Borlaug, an American agronomist whose indefatigable work in many areas around the world helped to create sustainable agriculture that led to sustainable food supplies. Among the group of scholars, some will be invited to the Global Youth Institute in Des Moines, IA, where they will study a pressing global food issue with peers, and then present this work to global leaders in the field. Selections for this distinction will be made in the summer of 2022.
Dr. Shelly Witham, Environmental Science instructor at HTHS, organized the event and highlighted the value of this work by her students, saying: “Food insecurity is a global problem and we need intelligent, driven students to interact with global leaders working to end hunger and poverty to improve food security around the world. I’m immensely proud of each student's research on global solutions.”