The Kansas State University Department of Communications and Agricultural Education will be adding Global Food Systems Leadership as an interdisciplinary secondary major this coming academic year.
The major is an interdisciplinary effort between the College of Agriculture, College of Education, and College of Arts and Sciences, Department Head Dr. Kris Boone said. “We came together with leadership studies and political sciences and developed this proposal for this secondary major.”
Boone is the Director of the program and the new major will reside in the Department of Communications and Agricultural Education.
“A secondary major is bigger than a minor because more credit hours are required for it, but smaller than a major and it can not be a students only major,” Boone said. “One of the philosophical tenants of the leadership faculty is that leadership should be applied in context to where an individual works and is why the major is not a primary major.”
The major requires taking three core classes for a total of nine credit hours, six credit hours related to food and agriculture for a basic introduction into the subject area, and an additional nine credit hours in a chosen area of concentration. Students are also required to stay in a non-credit seminar for three semesters.
According to Boone, “We try to make it where people from all over campus can find a way to get into it [the major].”
The startup costs for the program are being covered by a generous donation of $100,000 from Frontier Farm Credit Services with half the money being set aside for student scholarships in future years.
Boone hopes that this program will appeal to students who want to differentiate themselves, are interested in international work, or are interested in community action work.
“The idea is that we get our students engaged with other people, increasing their tolerance for differences of opinion, and enriching their understanding of how other people view food,” Boone said.
The major is available now, but the program will not start accepting students until spring.