In April, 2017, the NC-FEW team held an invited symposium in Lincoln, NE, in conjunction with the 2017 Water for Food Global Conference. The symposium, entitled Food, energy, and water education: Research, development, extension, and outreach – drew from a set of national food, energy, and water (FEW) education projects to highlight resources, models, and tools (RMTs) being used to cultivate scientific literacy within and across the FEW-Nexus. The goal of the session was to provide a forum to explore diverse RMTs and engage in discussion about how these ideas can advance systemic efforts to support FEW-Nexus-focused education efforts. It also featured an invited panel of national experts on FEW-Nexus-focused education and education research in a variety of contexts, including postsecondary, K-12, and informal/nonformal environments:
- Leilani Arthurs, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Geological Sciences, University of Colorado-Boulder
- Gillian Roehrig, Ph.D., Professor and President, Association for Science Teacher Education, University of Minnesota
- Troy D. Sadler, Ph.D., Thomas James Distinguished Professor in Experiential Learning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Jeyam Subbiah, Ph.D., P.E., Kenneth E. Morrison Distinguished Professor of Food Engineering Biological Systems Engineering and Food Science & Technology, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
The session was embedded in the then newly-established Multistate Research Planning Committee – Collaborative for Research on Food, Energy, and Water Education (NCDC231) – which was the precursor to the current, full, 5-year NC-FEW Multistate Research Committee (NC1207). Outcomes of this symposium included distillation and identification of themes (challenges, contributions, etc.) in RMTs across the projects and critical ‘next steps’ in efforts to develop RMTs that enhance current and future FEW-Nexus-focused education and education research efforts.