MOUNT OLIVE N.C. (WNCT) – Farming is the backbone of Eastern North Carolina. It’s been that way for generations.

The University of Mount Olive in Wayne County, is one of the few universities in our state focusing heavily on agriculture.

It’s also one of only a few universities offering majors in the field.

Thursday afternoon, hundreds of high school kids from all over the state will take part in an event aiming to inspire their generation to pursue careers in the agricultural industry.

The event is called, “AG-Fest”.

Over the past few years major changes have occurred in the agricultural industry, from new technology to different fields of study.

Professors at UMO say their school is a leader in recognizing these trends.

They want to stress there is more to agriculture than farming production.

“It just lets people know that we’re here it supports the agriculture industry that is so important in this part of the state we’re right in the heart of agriculture,” said Sandy Maddox, Director of the Agriculture Business Center at UMO. “We like to don what we can to support the industry”

The event will take place later today at 2 o’clock across multiple locations on the UMO campus.

University staff hopes the kids will have fun while learning.

Out of the hundreds of students, 41 percent are coming from counties right here in the East