Seven DMPS Students Participated in World Food Prize Global Youth Institute

Roosevelt senior Madison Holmes was one of seven DMPS students representing four high schools who presented their work at the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute.

Seven high school students from Des Moines Public Schools, representing four of the district’s high schools, were selected to attend speeches by world renowned leaders, present their own research, and join in hunger relief efforts during the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute October 18-20 in Des Moines.

The best and brightest students from 27 states and territories and five countries were selected to attend the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute during the Norman E. Borlaug International Symposium, which drew 1,300 people from 65 countries to discuss the world’s hunger and food security issues.

In order to be considered for participation, students from across Iowa and the United States researched global food security issues in the country of their choice, and then submitted papers on those critical topics, which they also presented to renowned experts and scientists.

Des Moines students selected and their chosen topics were:

Student’s Name


Paper Topic

Teacher Mentor

Rivkah Gardner-Frolick Roosevelt High School/Central Academy “India: No-till agriculture to reduce erosion, desertification, soil depletion, and herbicide usage” Scott Schoneberg
Paige Harper Lincoln High School “India: “Free Our Kids!” Satisfying the Hunger of the Dalits” Gabrielle Kouri-Kuhns
Madison Holmes Roosevelt High School/Central Academy “Zimbabwe: Assisting vulnerable populations and improving the effectiveness of humanitarian relief and food aid in conflict zones and disaster sites” Scott Schoneberg
Patience Kpurukoo North High School “Nigeria: How Poor Infrastructure is inhibiting the Progression of Economic Growth and Prosperity” Steven Benson
Alexandra Lidgett Roosevelt High School “Burma: Assisting vulnerable populations and improving the effectiveness of humanitarian relief” Mike Blair
Michelle Lopez Hoover High School “Cuba: In the Hands of the Unvalued” Katherine Larson
Liza Strueva Roosevelt High School “Russia: Organized health control and education to reduce food spoilage” Kacia Cain

At the three-day World Food Prize Global Youth Institute, high school students had the opportunity to interact with a diverse group of internationally renowned World Food Prize Laureates and leaders in food, agriculture and international development.

Participants also helped with a hands-on service project packaging meals for Outreach International, a hunger-fighting organization that serves people in Iowa and abroad, toured the Des Moines Water Works and took part in an Oxfam Hunger Banquet to experience the realities of global hunger and poverty.

Global Youth Institute attendees participated in symposium sessions featuring:

  • 2012 World Food Prize Laureate Dr. Daniel Hillel of Israel
  • Secretary General Ban Ki-moon of the United Nations
  • Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan
  • Rajiv Shah, Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development
  • The CEOs of many of the world’s major agribusiness companies: ADM, Deere & Co., DuPont, Monsanto, Novus International and Syngenta
  • Researchers and non-profit leaders from around the globe

The World Food Prize celebrated its 26th anniversary this year, and was founded by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Norman Borlaug in order to recognize and inspire great achievements in improving the quality, quantity and availability of food in the world.

Created by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Dr. Norman Borlaug and Iowa businessman John Ruan in 1994, The Global Youth Institute today receives major support from Clay Mathile and the Mathile Institute for the Advancement of Human Nutrition. The program was developed to challenge and inspire participating student-teacher teams to identify ways of alleviating hunger, and to expose the students to opportunities and careers in food, agriculture and natural resource disciplines. 

High school educators and students interested in participating in the 2013 Global Youth Institute should visit and select their state on the map.