ORONO — College and high school students and their teachers from across the state are invited to participate in the 2023 Maine Hunger Dialogue and Climate Action Summit, Wednesday, Oct. 11, from 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., at the Wells Conference Center at the University of Maine.
The one-day conference, sponsored by University of Maine Cooperative Extension, the Maine Campus Compact, Sodexo and the University Credit Union, is designed to challenge students and staff from all areas of study and spark action to end hunger on campuses in the state.
The event will include forums and discussions with subject matter experts on hunger, food waste and climate change. Participants will tour the UMaine campus and have the opportunity to enter a cooking challenge. During the Soup Happens! cooking challenge, teams of students will create soups using ingredients from the local Maine harvest. The students’ creations will then be packaged to feed those in need in the Bangor and Orono areas.
In addition to the Oct. 11 conference, attendees will be able to take part in a pre-conference gleaning session Sept. 26, from 9 a.m. - noon. During the session, participants will pick potatoes to donate to area food banks and see the food system at ground level.
Students can attend as individuals or in teams with a faculty mentor. Teams are also eligible to receive guidance on crafting a grant-funded project for their campus or school. Previous mini-grants have funded school and campus pantries, food security studies and campus community gardens. Grant funding requires attendance at the conference.
The conference is free and meals are included. Registration is required by Oct. 6, as space is limited. All registrants will receive a separate email regarding the Sept. 26, pre-conference gleaning event and the cooking challenge.
Last year’s conference at the University of Maine at Augusta brought together 65 students, faculty and staff from colleges across the state. During the two-day event, attendees heard from keynote speakers; packed and helped distribute 10,000 shelf-stable meals to area food banks; participated in a Top Chef dorm style cooking challenge; and were awarded 10 $500 mini-grants, which recipients will share with this year’s conference attendees during a poster session.
For more information and to sign up for the conference and the cooking and gleaning event, visit the 2023 Maine Hunger Dialogue and Climate Action Summit webpage. To request a reasonable accommodation, contact Lynne Holland, firstname.lastname@example.org; 207.581.8211.
For assistance with travel and accommodation for students coming from a distance of more than two hours, contact Sally Slovenski, email@example.com; 207.893.7714.
About University of Maine Cooperative Extension: As a trusted resource for over 100 years, University of Maine Cooperative Extension has supported UMaine's land and sea grant public education role by conducting community-driven, research-based programs in every Maine county. UMaine Extension seeks to build thriving communities and grow the food-based economy, focusing on aspects from production and processing to nutrition, food safety and food security. Extension also conducts the most successful out-of-school youth educational program in Maine through 4-H which offers hands-on projects in areas like health, science, agriculture and civic engagement and creates a positive environment where participants are encouraged to take on proactive leadership roles.
About the University of Maine: The University of Maine, founded in Orono in 1865, is the state's land grant, sea grant and space grant university, with a regional campus at the University of Maine at Machias. UMaine is located on Marsh Island in the homeland of the Penobscot Nation. UMaine Machias is located in the homeland of the Passamaquoddy Nation. As Maine's flagship public university, UMaine has a statewide mission of teaching, research and economic development, and community service. UMaine is the state's public research university and a Carnegie R1 top-tier research institution. It attracts students from all 50 states and 86 countries. UMaine currently enrolls 11,571 undergraduate and graduate students, and UMaine Machias enrolls 763 undergraduates. Our students have opportunities to participate in groundbreaking research with world-class scholars. UMaine offers 77 bachelor's degrees and six undergraduate certificates, as well as more than 100 degree programs through which students can earn doctoral or master's degrees, professional master's degrees, and graduate certificates. UMaine Machias offers 18 associate and bachelor's degrees, and 14 undergraduate certificates. The university promotes environmental stewardship, with substantial efforts campuswide to conserve energy, recycle and adhere to green building standards in new construction. For more information about UMaine and UMaine Machias, visit umaine.edu and machias.edu.