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Vilsack exits Nairobi city limits to visit agriculture, education institutions

Secretary Vilsack speaking for the children and staff of Stara Rescue Center School outside Kibera.

Secretary Vilsack speaks for the children and staff of Stara Rescue Center School outside Kibera.

Chris Mather, USDA Director of Communications, traveled with Secretary Vilsack to Kenya for the AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity Act) Summit. Today she shares her thoughts on segments of the trip when they traveled beyond the city limits of Nairobi for educational events.

Last week, Secretary Vilsack traveled to Nairobi, Kenya, as a participant in the 2009 African Growth and Opportunity Act Summit. Amid bilateral talks and attending the opening meeting with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and United States Trade Ambassador Ron Kirk, the Secretary had an opportunity to travel to the countryside to learn more about the agriculture industry in Kenya and see firsthand some of the efforts USDA has been supporting. Read more »

Happy 65th Birthday, Smokey Bear!

This week, the U.S. Forest Service celebrates the 65th birthday of one of its most prolific workers — Smokey Bear. This afternoon in the Whitten Federal Building, area children and the public joined the agency for Smokey’s official birthday celebration, where Forest Service officials had nothing but praise for his work. Read more »

Peoples’ Garden Workshop focuses on healthy eating

What a beautiful, sunny, not-too-hot day in D.C.!

It was perfect for today’s Peoples’ Garden workshop, which focused broadly on the many ways you can make your garden work for you — by planting different vegetables, and knowing how they’re bets prepared. Volunteer staff presented tips on utilizing garden vegetables such as squash, greens, and peppers, and gave basic advice on preparation. Read more »

USDA Summer Intern Reflects on Experience

Amy Sents spent the summer as an intern in the White House Liaison Office at USDA; she is currently a junior at Kansas State University.

When mapping out my plans for this summer, Washington D.C. was about the furthest from my mind, that is until I read an e-mail in early May from one of the assistant deans at my school. I had just completed a preliminary application process for a scholarship and was told by the committee that I needed a strong government experience in order to remain competitive. Less than a week later I received the e-mail announcing summer internships with USDA in Washington, D.C. With my ag background and interest in future employment with the department, this was the perfect opportunity. About three weeks later I interviewed with the White House Liaison Office, unaware until that point that such an office even existed in USDA. Read more »

Fourth Generation Cattleman Takes Advantage of Recovery Act Assistance

Justin Maxey comes from a long line of cattle farmers and has had every intention of continuing that legacy since he was a young boy. Now working in partnership with his father, this fourth-generation farmer owns 90 cows and 115 acres, and he hopes to continue growing. Read more »

Intern gives perspective on work, meeting with Secretary Vilsack

Amy Sents, a junior Animal Science major at Kansas State University, spent the summer as a USDA intern working in the Office of the White House Liaison. She joined about 100 other interns from around the country, as well as young people from Washington working with the D.C. Summer Youth Employment Program. Everyone had the opportunity last Friday to meet with Secretary Vilsack; Amy shares her experience this morning: Read more »