- February 2018
Office of Nutrition Education
Years in Position: 12.5
Years at MSU: 12.5
Irene Harrison does not simply teach children about food. She teaches children and families across Lauderdale County how to live a rich and vibrant life.
As a Snap-Ed Educator with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, Irene educates families about the importance of balanced nutrition and physical activity at schools, churches and around the community.
"My favorite part of this job is going to these different places and meeting new people," Harrison said. "I never would have gotten to do this working anywhere else."
She applied to the job on a whim after a friend encouraged her to consider it.
"I had never heard of Extension. I didn’t know what it was," Harrison said. "But it’s the best decision I’ve ever made."
One of the many experiences that Harrison loves about her job is the opportunity to work with children, especially preschoolers.
"I went to an area daycare and met 3-year-olds. They told me that they didn’t eat a lot of fruits and vegetables and that one little boy didn’t want to drink his milk," Harrison said. "I taught the lesson, and the next time I went there, they met me and said, ‘Miss Irene, we are eating our vegetables because we want to be healthy.’ That was one of the cutest things ever said to me."
Harrison unwinds after work by reading, sewing and spending time with her husband of 32 years.