Hayslett Receives P&S Outstanding New Professional Award

Maya Hayslett, crop science youth education specialist in plant pathology and microbiology, is the recipient of the 2022 Professional and Scientific Outstanding New Professional Award from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Iowa State University. She is part of the Integrated Pest Management program and her primary efforts are focused on agricultural education for youth through 4-H. She leads programming at state and national levels on topics including native bees, monarchs and water. Hayslett uses diverse outreach methods, including a Moodle course and youth education videos on agricultural basics such as “What is a Seed?” and “Soil Sampling,” and a YouTube video on “Crops for Kids: How do Crops Grow?” Her video series, “Bugs ‘n Blades,” was released to help youth understand insects, weeds and plant disease. Under Hayslett’s supervision, interns have created a podcast series for agricultural educators called “Welcome to Class.” 

Hayslett also coordinates state-level youth programming through an agricultural innovation challenge and a crop scouting competition. For the competition, she brings together entomologists, weed specialists, plant pathologists, agronomists and youth education specialists in a single event. She has mentored multiple AmeriCorps volunteers and student employees, as well. A colleague states, “Maya has been instrumental in developing and delivering educational programs statewide and nationally that expand youth understanding of crop sciences as a lifelong area of interest, as well as potential focus for higher educational pursuits and careers.”