CASNR students and faculty represent minorities in agriculture at leadership forum

latinos

Lyda Garcia, Ph.D., an instructor, recruiter and researcher in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences, represented Texas Tech University at the 2012 Latinos in Agriculture Leaders Forum in San Antonio on Oct. 17-19.

Additionally, five undergraduate students attended the conference:

  • Derek Correa, a freshman agricultural and applied economics major from Lyford, Texas
  • Briana Rendon, a junior animal science major from McAllen, Texas
  • Masi Mejia, a senior natural resource management major from Laredo, Texas
  • Horacio "Trey" Garza, a sophomore animal science major from Edingburg, Texas
  • Silvano "Dos" Pena, a sophomore animal science major from Hebbronville, Texas

Garcia served as the group’s sponsor and was a speaker at the forum where she gave a presentation entitled, "Proven Methods in Recruiting Hispanics into Agriculture."

Mejia was selected to serve on a discussion panel as well at the forum to represent a student’s perspective.

According to conference organizers, the program for the forum was designed to connect agriculture stakeholders with Latino/Hispanic representatives and assist in creating relationships to better recruit students, employees and consumers. Attendees represented 14 states and three countries.

Since 2010, Garcia has assisted the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources in increasing diversity by aiding in the recruitment of first generation college students and minorities.

"Getting the student to Texas Tech is only half the battle," Garcia said. “Keeping them is the other half.”

To boost retention, she has voluntarily organized a mentor group for all minorities. The group was organized to help minority students feel welcome and encourage networking to form a support group for these students. The group currently boasts 18 student members. Garcia also works as a mentor for the MentorTECH program, where she is paired with three additional first generation students.

CONTACT: Lyda Garcia, Ph.D., Instructor, Recruiter and Researcher, Department of Animal and Food Sciences, College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Texas Tech University at (806)742-2805 or lyda.garcia@ttu.edu.