June 1, 2023
Nine high school educators explored career pathways and opportunities in the pork industry at the Educators Learning Experience hosted by Seaboard Foods on May 24. Representing five school districts from the Oklahoma Panhandle and southwest Kansas, educators gained a better understanding of Seaboard Foods farm and plant operations to use in their curriculums and help teach about agribusiness to their students.
Attendees toured a sow farm and the Guymon, Oklahoma pork processing plant facility followed by an interactive career panel with employees from unique backgrounds, education statuses and career paths across the Seaboard Foods system. The employees provided tips for educators to help high school-aged students excel when starting a new career at Seaboard Foods or in the pork industry.
Mike Benedict, Seaboard Foods regional milling manager shared with the educators, "When I began with Seaboard Foods, I had no knowledge on how to operate a feed mill but I was willing to learn. That is what we are looking for in our new hire candidates today — being willing to learn."
The Educators Learning Experience is one of the programs offered by Seaboard Foods to fuel education in the communities where it operates. The company seeks to uplift local education and the systems that provide it by leveraging the company's expertise and enhancing educational opportunities through this program as well as its community scholarship and educator grant programs.
Lara Allen, an agricultural education teacher at Texhoma Public Schools, said, "Living within a Seaboard Foods area of operation, I have always seen the name but never knew how the business operated. I am excited to tell my students about the numerous career pathways they can choose within our community working with Seaboard Foods."
Educators from Oklahoma and Kansas attending included:
Guymon High School
Kali Cutright, physical education instructor and head volleyball coach
Jessica Jacobs, special education instructor
Manuel Medina, college and career readiness instructor
Texhoma High School
Lara Allen, agricultural education instructor
Hooker High School
Carol Cathcart, school counselor
Kylie Edwards, agricultural education instructor
Liberal High School
Tasha Ebeling, CTE coordinator/ business teacher
Beaver High School
Ashley Harrison, agriculture education instructor
Gruver High School
Kelsey Haiber, agriculture education instructor
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