About one thousand minority college students and business representatives from across the U.S. are meeting in central Iowa this morning for the start of a three-day national job fair and training conference. Carl Butler is an executive officer for the group Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences, or MANRRS. Butler says students will be exposed to job readiness training workshops, student competitions, opportunities to network and they’ll be exposed to corporate recruiters from the various companies. Dozens of the expected 700 students will be from Iowa colleges and universities and several of the companies are Iowa based too — including: John Deere, Pioneer and Cargill. Other students are coming to Des Moines from as far away as California and New York. Butler says MANRRS has 50 chapters nationwide with 13-hundred members. Butler says MANRRS is the only organization to promote careers within both the agriculture and natural sciences industries among students from all racial and ethnic groups. The conference is also offering a high school symposium today (from 9 A.M. to 2:30 P.M.), where younger students can participate in interactive workshops touching on leadership skills, preparing for college and careers in agriculture and natural science fields. The conference is underway at the Polk County Convention Complex in downtown Des Moines and concludes Saturday. For more information, see the website: “www.manrrs.org”.