Kentucky State University 2022 Model State Program

Project Overview

Project Type: PDP State Program
Funds awarded in 2022: $11,000.00
Projected End Date: 06/30/2024
Grant Recipient: Kentucky State University
Region: Southern
State: Kentucky
State Coordinator:
Jerusha Lay, DVM
Kentucky State University


No commodities identified


No practices identified

Proposal abstract:

Now in its 25th year, Third Thursday Thing features monthly sustainable agriculture training sessions. The sessions take place at the Kentucky State University Harold R. Benson Research and Demonstration Farm on the third Thursday of every month with no session in December. Agricultural Professionals and farm leaders throughout the commonwealth and surrounding states are the target audience for the trainings. These trainings are structured for multiple learning types, with lecture style presentations followed by hands on demonstration/activities. We have also added a Fourth Wednesday program based on requests from the agricultural community and will support a Women in Sustainable Agriculture Group. We are also including funds to support some of our KSU agents to seek professional development in sustainable agriculture.

Third Thursdays have become an institution in Kentucky professional development educational programming. The broad range of topics (listed in a later section) ensure that agricultural professionals and producer leaders have training in the skills necessary on a diversified small farm. TTT also serves as a space for synergies in small farm education. Many conferences and educational meetings are planned around “Third Thursdays” including:
o the Annual Small, Limited-Resource/Minority Farmers Conference,
o the International Pawpaw Conference,
o the Regional SARE Goat Project’s Collaborator Conference,
o the OPPE 2501 OASDVFR Outreach and Sustainable Agriculture Educational Programs for Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers

Project objectives from proposal:

Note that the funds in Kentucky are split into Kentucky State University funds and University of Kentucky funds. The two programs work together, though each has slightly different but complementary goals. Third Thursday Thing is one of the premier sustainable agriculture training programs in the state. It serves producer leaders, extension and other ag outreach providers in the state by offering up-to-date, timely information on a variety of sustainable agriculture topics. It meets two of the most pressing needs in Kentucky sustainable agriculture: the need for regular, relevant, basic production and marketing information, and a place for agricultural professionals to seek professional development and connect with growers and other clientele.

The University of Kentucky’s program is this year focused on the farm transition component of land stewardship. This will be achieved through a professional development series aimed at agriculture outreach providers. We plan to draw national- level experts and regional experts together in a year-long series of presentations and trainings. This is based on feedback from our ag outreach community about the need for these kinds of trainings.

2022 Kentucky SARE MSP Revised Objectives:
--Continue to offer the basic science-based information on sustainable agriculture production and marketing.
--Supplement previous efforts with new subject matter training about farm succession and transition planning.
--Expanding professional capacity of agriculture professionals in supporting producers as they plan for the present and future of their farms.
--Support the further development of a community of women working in sustainable agriculture.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.