Strategic Initiatives Grants


MAELC will award grants to support programming for agricultural, food and natural resource education (AFNR) education at the primary, secondary, and postsecondary levels. Groups may apply for grants through a sponsoring organization. Applications are due before midnight (central) on April 15, 2019.

These strategic grants are focsued to assist in the following areas:

  • Implementation of new or expansion of current AFNR education programs that attract new and underserved/underrepresented groups
  • Development of experiences that grow knowledge and understanding of AFNR systems
  • Offering career exploration programs that recruit and retain students for the future workforce in agricultural education and agriculture careers

Program Improvement

  • Creation and/or alignment of AFNR courses for effective integration of science, math and economics standards and principles
  • Securing equipment and technology needs that enhance student experience and instruction
  • Development and/or improvement of AFNR curriculum and course delivery methods

Teacher Professional Development

  • Supporting career lifecycles of agricultural educators (e.g. pre-service, early, mid or late career), which can include professional development opportunities
  • Creation of programs that recruit, retain and transition instructors at the secondary, postsecondary and adult farm business management levels

Over the last five years, grant awards have ranged from $500-$30,000, with the average award amount being $7,300.

Please note applications are no longer accepted for greenhouse structures, however, funding for items such as consumables or other materials used in a greenhouse will still be considered.

Application Procedures and Guidelines
For more information about the Strategic Initiatives grant program and an application overview, please review the "Strategic Initiatives Application Guidelines" (PDF).

Grant Winners

Round 22 (2019)

Institution Amount Project Description
Braham Area Schools $4,103 UAV Technology, Engineering & Operation
Chatfield High School $7,700 Chatfield Agriculture STEM Initiative
Crookston Public Schools $6,807 Crookston Public Schools Agriculture Program Initiative
Fulda High School $9,326 Incorporating CASE - Natural Resources
Greenway High School $7,929 Greenway High School Integration of Agriculture Classes
Hills-Beaver Creek High School $2,102 Aquaponics System
New Ulm High School $10,650 Eagle Enterprises
St. Francis-Saints Academy $7,100 Professional Development - CASE Natural Resources & Ecology
Vermilion Community College $11,200 High Quality Data Collection in a Tablet World
William Kelley High School $1,769 Technology for AgriScience Inquiry

Round 21-2 (2018)

Institution Amount Project Description
Blooming Prairie High School $1,100 Introduction of CASE Curriculum in grades 8-12
Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart High School $11,856 Curriculum Update: Integration of Food Science into Agriculture Department
Children's Museum of Southern Minnesota $15,000 Engaging Young Learners in Agricultural Education: Healthy Soil, Plant Science, & Livestock Farming
Como Park Senior High School $6,600 Animal Pathway
Farmamerica $5,350 Teacher Day Camp
Fergus Falls Public Schools $847 Drone Technology
Glenville-Emmons Public Schools $9,776 Integrating Science & Hands-On Learning in Agricultural Education with a Curriculum Update
MACCRAY High School $2,951 Integrating Minnesota Physics Standards into Agricultural Education Classes
Minnesota State University, Mankato $8,352 Integration of Agriculture Machinery Design into Engineering Education Curriculum
Minnesota State University, Mankato $11,880 Minnesota STEM+Ag Career Pathway Curriculum
Nicollet Public Schools $3,960 Mechatronics for High School & Middle School
Pierz Healy High School $9,598 Welding Metals & Relationships

Round 21 (2018)

Institution Amount Project Description
Arts Us $13,620 Grow 365: Youth for Food Justice and a Sustainable Food System
Breckenridge High School $6,760 Modern Manufacturing Education at Breckenridge High School
Central Lakes College $9,368 Development, Use and Promotion of a 360 Degree Video Tool for STEM, Agricultural and Natural Resource Education
Marshall High School $4,541 Building a Partnership to Grow Agricultural Education
Minnesota State University, Mankato $13,412 Promotion of Agriculture Careers
Ogilvie High School $6,970 Updating and Upgrading the Small Engines Curriculum and Shop
Ridgewater College $12,448 Unmanned Aircraft Systems Education
Stillwater Area High School $2,880 Trout Stream Study
University of Minnesota Extension-Center for Youth Development $3,000 4-H Youth Teaching Youth LEAD (Learn, Education, Advocate, and Develop) Conference
Zumbrota-Mazeppa High School $4,787 Curriculum Update: Integrating Science into Agriculture Courses