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Nov 25 2013

NYIT Gardeners Enjoy First Harvest

Old Westbury, NY  (November 25, 2013) —  New York Institute of Technology health sciences students and faculty tasted the fruits -- and herbs and vegetables -- of their labors yesterday as they harvested, cooked, and enjoyed the inaugural bumper crop from NYIT’s new intergenerational community garden.
 
With temperatures hovering just above the freezing mark, project manager and second-year student Shannon Blake, Assistant Professor Tobi Abramson, Ph.D., and James O’Rourke, a facilities foreman and gardening hobbyist picked fresh kale, parsley, arugula, lettuce, Swiss chard, beet greens, and radishes. 
 
Several health sciences students helped prepare and cook the bounty with guidance from Executive Chef Brian Hoos in the Student Activity Center. 
 
“That’s the first time I had kale that tasty,” said fourth-year student Priyanka Chacko, who helped sauté kale for a dish with pasta, sausage, and fresh parsley and chives. “By sautéing it, the nutrients stayed in the food.”
 
Another student, Christine Jacob, noted that planting, growing, and eating the food as part of her nutrition class gave her a “real-life application” of her education. Jacob said she’s more likely to make her own dishes with healthier food as a result.
 
The garden was funded through a grant from NYIT’s Institutional Support for Research and Creativity program. 
 
Moments after she enjoyed a plate of pasta and kale, salad, chicken with sautéed Swiss chard, and greens with white beans, Blake reflected on the project’s main lessons.
 
“It was a good learning experience,” said Blake, who formerly attended classes at NYIT’s Manhattan campus. “It got me more integrated into the campus here and I met a lot of people.”
 
Blake said she learned about raised-bed gardening, seasonal planting, and the process of thinning young seedlings. 
 
“And I learned a lot about bugs,” she added. “Cabbage worms – they’re nasty.”
 
Plans for spring planting are underway. Assistant Professor Lorraine Mongiello said students are also working on a cookbook containing family recipes that use the herbs and vegetables harvested from the garden.  
 
About NYIT
New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) offers 90 degree programs, including undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees, in more than 50 fields of study, including architecture and design; arts and sciences; education; engineering and computing sciences; health professions; management; and osteopathic medicine. A non-profit independent, private institution of higher education, NYIT has 13,000 students attending campuses on Long Island and Manhattan, online, and at its global campuses. NYIT sponsors 11 NCAA Division II programs and one Division I team. 
 
Led by President Edward Guiliano, NYIT is guided by its mission to provide career-oriented professional education, offer access to opportunity to all qualified students, and support applications-oriented research that benefits the larger world. To date, 95,000 graduates have received degrees from NYIT. For more information, visit New York Institute of Technology at nyit.edu.
 
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