Napiarala attends World Food Prize Global Youth Institute

Friday, November 9, 2012
A-A's Joe Napierala and SLHS's Phillip Bond with the Associate Dean of the Ag department at Iowa State. /Submitted

"Food is a common right, and all who are born have a right to food". This was a common sentiment from the World Food Prize which was held in Des Moines, Iowa just this past week. The World Food Prize is commonly described by many as "the Nobel Prize in food and agriculture". It is awarded to persons who have made great and outstanding contributions to the world's food supply and was inspired by Dr. Norman Borlaug, a Nobel Laureate himself. During this week-long event, premier politicians, scientists, and businessmen meet up from around the world to address one problem: how to feed the world and to award one person for his or her achievements in helping to solve that problem.

This year, along with all of these many brilliant scientists, well known politicians, and successful businessmen, there were also 150 high school students and their teachers. This is what is known as the Global Youth Institute. It is a partnership to the World Food Prize in which the students get to interact with Nobel and World Food Prize Laureates as well as esteemed persons, such as professors, from around the world.

This year, both Joe Napierala, a senior of Alta-Aurelia High School, and Phillip Bond, a junior from Storm Lake High School, both attended.

"How did they get to attend?" you might ask. Well, it all started back prior to April of 2012. Each of the students respective teachers were informed of an opportunity for the students to help contribute ideas to solving world hunger. The students each had to choose a country that suffered from a lack of food availability or proper nutrition. The students then had to thoroughly research the country they chose and write an in-depth paper describing the problems facing that country as well as proposing plausible, research-based solutions to the hunger problem of said country. After submitting their papers, they were invited to attend the Iowa Youth Institute held in April of 2012 in Des Moines. While there, the students got to take part in a variety of activities which allowed them interaction with other students across the state and time to meet innovative researchers, professors, and politicians. But, most importantly, they got to present their findings to panels that were made up of these researchers, professors, and politicians and were provided feedback on their solutions. After this amazing event, they were then given the opportunity to attend the Global Youth Institute, in conjunction with the World Food Prize, which culminated in the students being able to present their revised papers and presentations to a panel of the Nobel and World Food Prize Laureates in Des Moines Oct.20. Students were able to meet famous leaders such as the UN Secretary General.