420 Kennedy Hall
Travis Park is a professional agricultural science teacher educator and Director of the Cornell Teacher Education Program. His teaching focuses on implementation of experiential learning in agriculture and on disciplinary literacy.
The primary practical problems that my research addresses within agricultural science education are related to the questions, 1) what instructional strategies in agricultural education programs promote increased student achievement in the traditional academic areas, and 2) how do agricultural education programs contribute to student achievement and performance? (Osborne, 2007). My current research focuses on instructional strategies that enhance how students use reading, writing, and literacy to learn content. I am also interested in how teachers create an environment that fosters literacy in all its forms in the high school agricultural science classroom. Students in agricultural science rely upon many sources of information to make decisions and solve agricultural and environmental problems. What is the impact of implementing reading strategy instruction and creating classroom cultures that support literacy on student learning, overall student achievement, and motivation to read about concepts in secondary courses in agricultural science education and other CTE areas?
As an agriculture teacher educator, I feel that the teachers of agriculture throughout New York State are constituents who deserve and need outreach and engagement efforts, especially through (a) ongoing professional development, (b) collaboration on research, (c) representation on state-level FFA and agricultural education policy bodies, and (d) educating about food, agriculture, and natural resources. Thus, the roles that I have used to collaborate with these stakeholders and extend knowledge from Cornell University to practicing teachers in New York State are (1) to represent Cornell University on the New York State FFA Leadership Training Foundation (NYSFFALTF) Board of Directors, the New York Agricultural Education Leadership Council, and the New York Association of Agricultural Educators (NYAAE) board; (2) to assist with planning for the annual New York Association of Agricultural Educators summer conference and new teachers’ workshops; (3) develop grant proposals pertaining to critical needs expressed by agriculture teachers and their agricultural science students, (4) and to provide direction for the Cornell Agriculture Outreach and Education extension program through the Department of Education. Cornell Agriculture Outreach and Education consists of the New York Agriculture in the Classroom program and the Agricultural Education Outreach program which serves school-based agricultural education in New York State.
EDUC 4410 provides a foundation for literacy activities in secondary education. Students examine current research, policy, and practice related to the acquisition of first and second languages, the dynamics of literacy in school contexts, and the development of academic language and literacy proficiency. EDUC 5320 provides an overview of the organization and structure of programs and curriculum, professionalism, and professional responsibilities of teachers in agricultural science education. Principles of developing and managing programs, courses, curriculum, and instructional material for educational programs in agricultural science education will be discussed. EDUC 5350 provides future agriculture educators with a comprehensive overview of the components of an agriculture education program including the integration of supervised agricultural experience (SAE) and FFA. Students will examine factors affecting membership, purpose, design, operation, and administration of career and technical student organizations (CTSO). FFA organization structure and functions on the national, state, and local levels will be addressed.