At Cultivate’22, Jazmin Albarran, Executive Director of Seed Your Future, spoke on the importance of educating the younger generation of the vast job opportunities within the horticulture industry.
“I truly believe plants impact our physical, mental and emotional health,” Albarran said. “We are a movement, and our mission is to promote horticulture and inspire people to pursue careers working with plants and flowers in different capacities. It’s not just about the people growing plants, but it’s also the HR, accounting, graphic design, marketing, academia and stats. There’s so much you can do, but people are not aware of that.”
Through the research Seed Your Future conducted, they learned that in middle school students start thinking about who they want to be when they grow up, so Seed Your Future is focusing their efforts on reaching the middle school to college age groups.
“In my year at Seed Your Future, I keep hearing people telling students about the importance of being in nature and growing things, but it stops there,” Albarran said. “I’m not hearing many people say ‘and you can work in this industry. You can be a part of this industry.’”
Seed Your Future provides a toolkit for educators to access and use through the BLOOM! scholastic site. There are lessons, activities and digital learning for grades 6-8. The goal is to reach middle-schoolers and inspire their interest in plants and plant careers.
Seed Your Future also provides a list of 146 different horticultural career profiles, scholarships, internships, horticulture camps and information on where to study based on the chosen career. Any business in the industry, no matter how big or small, can send in their internship or scholarship, and Seed Your Future will list it on their website.
All the resources that Seed Your Future offers is free and available for anyone to use. “We want you to use our videos and put them in newsletters,” Albarran said. “We want you to link out to our 100 plus career profiles. Use our martials to reach more people and let people in your community know that we are here, and these careers are here. … We envision a nation where everybody understands the value and importance of plants.”
Through awareness, education, workforce development and partnerships, Seed Your Future is promoting the horticulture industry and inspiring the younger generation to pursue careers working with plants. For more information, visit SeedYourFuture.org.