MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- You no longer have to be in a rural area to operate a farm. MPS’ Harold Vincent High School received a big donation to help students run their own urban farm, thanks to Case IH.
“Can you imagine this, guys? This is cooler than a brand new car, isn't it?” MPS Superintendent Gregory Thornton said.
On Thursday, March 28th Case IH, a farming equipment manufacturer based in Racine, donated three pieces of equipment to Vincent High's Urban Agriculture program – two tractors, one with a front loader, and a utility vehicle to assist in planting crops.
“For plowing, towing the machinery behind it. For plowing, tilling, things like that,” Agricultural Instructor Kyle Slick said.
Urban Ag is a new program at the school this year. It already has a greenhouse and an aquaponics system. Now, with this equipment, the 200 students enrolled in the program will be able to start growing things like alfalfa, corn and oats.
“I'm fascinated by that actually,” Vincent High junior Alize Souter said.
“I think it would be easier because we don't have to use a lot of energy and we can work more,” Vincent High junior Xai Vang said.
It'll help give them first-hand experience in areas like food science, landscape and design, urban gardening and even veterinary science.
“The donation here is allowing these students to be progressive and be a future farmer of America,” Kyle Russell, Case IH’s Senior Director of Marketing said.
It's a one-of-a kind program within MPS, connecting students to a future in food, agriculture and beyond – fields that have deep roots in Wisconsin.
“It really is equipment where we have multiple pathways for kids to get into several different careers,” Slick said.
“It could open up a lot of job opportunities,” Souter said.
The total value of the farming equipment is about $125,000.
The crops students plant using the equipment will be donated to local farmers and the Wisconsin State Fair for animal feed.