The web browser you are using is out of date and no longer supported by this site. For the best TractorSupply.com experience, please consider updating your browser to the latest version.
Buy Online Pick Up in Store Now available - Tractor Supply Co.
Navigate to Shopping Cart
Cart Item Count
 
  • Left Arrow
    My Account
  • Left Arrow
    My Account
  • Make My Store

    Your nearest store doesn't match your preferred store. Do you want to change the nearest store as your preferred store?

    CONFIRM CLEAR INFO?

    Click "YES" to clear all the customer data, cart contents and start new shopping session.

    Your current shopping session will get automatically reset in seconds.
    If you are still active user then please click "NO"

    Changing your store affects your localized pricing. This includes the price of items you already have in your shopping cart. Are you sure you want to change your store?

    Your nearest store doesn't match your preferred store. Do you want to change the nearest store as your preferred store?


    • To view pricing.
    • To make purchases online.
    • To check availability of Pickup In Store items and Delivery Services.

    click here
    We do not share this information with anyone.For details,please view our Privacy Policy
    X

    Please enable your microphone.

    X

    We Are Listening...

    Say something like...

    "Show me 4health dog food..."

    You will be taken automatically
    to your search results.

    X

    Your speech was not recognized

    Click the microphone in the search bar to try again, or start typing your search term.

    X

    We are searching now

    Your search results
    will display momentarily...

    URBAN FARMING

    Ag-focused high school cultivates careers

    By Diana West

    Photography by Robert Hendricks

     

    The sprawling metropolis of Chicago is probably the last place one would think of agriculture — unless you’re a student at Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences. This four-year charter school’s campus, in the southern part of the city, includes pigs and other livestock, greenhouses, and a 50-acre field where sweet corn, pumpkins, vegetables, fruit trees, oats, and hay are grown and harvested. Recent graduate Maggie Neeson’s chosen pathway at the school was horticulture, focusing on landscape architecture and principles of design.

    In the greenhouses she learned how to properly grow plants, transplant them, and prepare for the school’s flower show and twice-yearly plant sales. And during spring, she helped plant crops. “Attending this high school,” Maggie says, “opened my eyes to how important ag is.” Not everyone who attends the agriculture school plans to dig in the dirt. “Every student, whether they go into ag or not, benefits from the ag curriculum because it’s rigorous and science-based — four years of math, four years of science, and eight courses in agriculture,” Principal William Hook says.

    Prior graduate Xavier Morgan, for example, took an agricultural finance pathway because he preferred the business development side of agriculture. During his junior and senior years, Xavier developed marketing and business plans. The school provided a career opportunity where Xavier never realized one existed. “I had absolutely no idea what agriculture was all about,” before he attended the school, he says. But he quickly learned. Freshmen are required to perform 40 hours of work the following summer in the Supervised Agriculture Experience program where they build fences, pick corn, feed animals, and clean the barn. 

    The unique charter school, the only one of its kind in the Midwest, opened in 1985, at a time of great concern, according to its website, about the future of agricultural education and the agricultural industry in general. Its purpose was, and is, to prepare urban students, such as Xavier, for professions and careers in agriculture. And, indeed, the school did just that for Xavier. Last year, he graduated from the University of Illinois with a degree in Agriculture Communications with an emphasis in advertising and a minor in food and environmental systems. ★ 

    Diana West is a Joplin, Mo., writer.