Students in the Introduction to EcoGastronomy class stepped outside of the classroom on Wednesday, March 25th and Thursday March 26th for an optional high tunnel tour. This is the first year students in the class were given the opportunity to tour the facility as a hands-on activity. Experiential activities are a required part of the Intro to EcoG class, and the tour was definitely a success. The peer-to-peer interaction made it a different learning experience for students.
The high tunnels on campus are located by the Fairchild Dairy Center. They were built a few years ago, with funding supplied by Dining Services in order to have fresh, local and sustainably grown produce available year round at the UNH Dairy Bar, catering events and dining halls.
Students from the SAFS 679 and 680*class have a unique learning opportunity in the classroom and outside by running the high tunnels with the guidance from their professor, Andrew Ogden and teacher’s assistant, Ross MacKeil. EcoGastronomy students were given the opportunity to learn about what these students do and all aspects of the high tunnels. Ross and a few students from the class helped to lead one-hour tours that included how the high tunnels were started, the purpose, benefits, challenges, sustainable growing methods, varieties grown and a description of the SAFS class.
It is important students see the exceptional opportunities this university has to offer to them outside of the classroom. These tours definitely expanded knowledge for students on EcoGastronomy principles and possible experiences they may want to take part in during their time at the university.
* Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems major courses: SAFS 679 and SAFS 680, Food Production Field Experience: This two-course series is offered in Spring (SAFS 679) and Fall (SAFS 680) and provides students with hands-on experience in growing food and managing a small farm business. Through part of the Farm-to-YouNH project, students grow fresh vegetables and fruits on campus for UNH Dining Services (NHAES/COLSA high tunnels - NH Agricultural Experiment Station/College of Life Sciences and Agriculture).