Agriculture Press Release

July 9, 1999

Students Win Awards for Ag Science Projects

TALLAHASSEE Florida Agriculture Commissioner Bob Crawford today announced that two students have been awarded $1,000 U.S. Savings Bonds for their agricultural projects presented at the 44th Annual State Science and Engineering Fair of Florida competition in Lakeland.

Aaron C. Richardson, of Walton Senior High School in DeFuniak Springs, won a $1,000 Savings Bond for his project in the senior environmental science category. Kristina L. Anderson, of Ronald McNair Magnet School in Cocoa, was the junior classification winner, also with a project in the environmental sciences category.

"I was impressed by the sophistication of the projects undertaken by these young people and I applaud their efforts," Crawford said. "The agricultural sciences offer challenging career opportunities as we head into the next millenium and I hope these and other young people pursue careers in these fields."

Richardsons project involved determining the effect of various insecticides on the nitrogen-fixing ability of legumes inoculated with Rhizobia bacteria. Anderson studied the impact of a mussel infestation in clam aquaculture.

To help students select a topic and carry out their science fair project, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services developed and maintains "Planet Ag," an Internet web site packed with ideas and information.

Planet Ag provides students with an explanation of the scientific method, from choosing a topic and stating a hypothesis, to deciding on a procedure and recording the results. The web site also provides a sample project for students to review, a look at previous winners projects, and links to other agriculture- and science-related sites.

Planet Ag is accessed on the Internet at www.fl-ag.com/PlanetAg

The State Science and Engineering Fair of Florida is a three-day display of science project exhibits prepared by aspiring scientists and engineers in grades six through twelve from throughout the state. The fair is administered by the Florida Foundation for Future Scientists, which promotes activities that encourage young people to pursue careers in science, engineering and research.

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is among numerous government agencies, businesses and organizations that contribute awards for the fair. The winners of Department awards were selected by Department specialists involved in food safety, entomology and plant pathology.


For more information:

Terence McElroy
(850) 488-3022

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