GA Peanut Commission makes education center more appealing to st - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

GA Peanut Commission makes education center more appealing to students

(Source: WALB) (Source: WALB)
(Source: WALB) (Source: WALB)
(Source: WALB) (Source: WALB)
GA Peanut Commission Executive Director Don Koehlor (Source: WALB) GA Peanut Commission Executive Director Don Koehlor (Source: WALB)
Berrien Co. Artist Jill Whitley (Source: WALB) Berrien Co. Artist Jill Whitley (Source: WALB)
TIFTON, GA (WALB) -

There's a shortage of students taking up careers in agriculture, and the Georgia Peanut Commission wants to change that.

Staff held a ribbon cutting on Wednesday afternoon to dedicate their education center to students after turning it into an enriching learning environment.

The center was once a place for tourists.

"If I can get a kid in the eighth to want to do something in agriculture, we've got them right then," said Executive Director Don Koehler.

Koehler said they're having a hard time finding employees to work in agriculture.

But if kids know how noble the job is, they might change their mind.

"The farmers I work for are some of the greatest folks on the face of this Earth," Koehler said to a crowd. 

The peanut industry is a $2.5 billion industry in Georgia alone, feeding people around the world.

"That's a really pretty noble task when you're feeding hungry people," Koehler remarked. 

After two years, the center now has 3D videos, peanut exhibits and colorful murals to tell their story.

"It's the family, it's the whole family, you know dedication," said Jill Whitley. 

With the stroke of her brush, Whitley made the murals in three months.

"The one up there just tells a story and you can look at it and get so much out of it," Whitley explained, and lead more students down the career path of farming.

"We want it to be fun, we want folks to walk out the door excited. Like you said, we want young people to get involved in farming," said Koehler. 

The Georgia Peanut Commission Education Center is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

But staff will make accommodations for groups wanting to visit outside of those hours. 

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