Teens learn about local food production

July 16, 2010 (CHICAGO) While some teens are spending the summer sleeping in and hanging out, ABC7 found one group that volunteered to be in the classroom to discuss local food production.

"We're learning about food and technology and marketing and the social economic and political aspects of it," said Ariel Jacobs, senior, Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences.

The group is taking part in a six-week long program called the Ecology Entrepreneur Summer Internship.

"I wanted to be a part of this program because I felt as if I wanted to spend my summer doing something that could help me learn rather than just sitting at home or doing nothing," said Brandon Dye, senior, Chicago High School for Agriculture Science.

The internship is a joint effort between the Wilbur Wright College, where they earn college credit, and Eli's Cheesecake, where they get entrepreneurial experience.

"We thought how great it would be to have the students come up to be able to attend a class and get college credit. And then participate in our Farmer's Market, and then having great speakers come and talk about leading issues in agriculture," said Marc Schulman, president, Eli's Cheesecake.

One of the primary goals is to support students' classroom learning with hands-on lessons.

"We're actually selling stuff from CHAS, like honey and dog bandanas. So, we could give back to the community from our farm," said Gabriel Ojeda, junior, Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences.

The students also spend a couple of days a week at their school working with freshmen to help them become acclimated to high school life.

Eli's Cheesecake's farmers' market is open every Thursday from 7 a.m. to 1p.m. -- now through September.

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