KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Eagleton College and Career Academy is teaching students agriculture is more than farming.

It’s Mia Sullivan’s third year as a CASE Lead Teacher in Blount County. CASE is an instructional system that is changing the culture of agriculture programs in the country.

Sullivan says the curriculum is focused on student-directed learning. Her students’ work is divided between activities, problem solving and projects.

High schoolers work through labs rooted in science like testing and comparing pH levels between different substances and experimenting with water erosion. Sullivan says the lessons meet the current demand of the industry and prepare them for the workforce.

She feels accomplished when her students tell her how they’ve applied classroom concepts to real-life situations.

“When that lightbulb comes on, and it comes on hard and then it comes on even more and they can connect it to something that they did at the beginning of the year, and I didn’t have to do anything. First of all, that makes my job easier, but second it tells me they are making these connections and I can actually see it and they can actually see it,” said Sullivan.

Sullivan was awarded a partial scholarship this year to take the CASE natural resource and environmental science course in Alaska. It’s an opportunity to further her professional development and prepare her students for success.