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Commentary

Eco Minute: January 28, 2015

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Jem Sullivan
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One hundred and fifty years ago, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Morrill Act into law, and our country has benefitted from such foresight ever since.   This is Carrie Stevenson with the Ecominute.  In the 1800’s, higher education was primarily accessible only by wealthy males.  The Morrill Act established the land grant university system, promoting agricultural and mechanical arts and putting higher education within reach of the average citizen.  

Today, the land grant system includes 107 institutions such as the University of Florida, Auburn University, and Cornell, in 50 states and US territories. Land grant institutes have helped provide America with the safest, most abundant food supply on earth and aided impoverished countries with expertise in agricultural production.  The land grant mission centers on innovation, food production and safety, health and nutrition, water quality, and natural resource conservation.  The local Extension Office in your county is the outreach arm of your land grant university.