Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne today dedicated its new greenhouse, which gives students in the Agriculture program a hands-on way to learn various growing techniques, such as aquaculture.
“The aquaculture unit will add another aspect to our greenhouse: fertilizer for the plants,” says Kelli Kreider, Agriculture program chair. “Water will circulate from fish to the plants and back to the fish. With that, students will learn about fish husbandry, processing, water control.”
The greenhouse was built with the help of numerous community organizations, including the Clarence and Edith Schust Foundation, Chuck and Lisa Surack/Sweetwater, English Bonter Mitchell Foundation, AWS Foundation, Michael Ottenweller family, and Anthony Lardydell; partners Design Collaborative and Hagerman Construction; and Old National Bank, a donor for the greenhouse and related scholarships.
“We are also excited to work with Easterseals Arc, whose clients will be able to take courses at Ivy Tech this summer thanks to Old National,” says Margaret Sturm, Ivy Tech’s executive director of Resource Development.
Easterseals Arc students are currently completing the courses, which include three culinary classes and three agriculture classes.
The greenhouse opened in January of this year, and depending on the classes students select, they may study there on a weekly basis for class.
This year saw the largest number of Agriculture graduates at Ivy Tech Fort Wayne since the program’s 2013 inception. Twenty students graduated in Spring 2018, and so far, 80 students are enrolled for Fall 2018 classes. Those studying Agriculture at Ivy Tech can earn a variety of certificates, in addition to an associate degree, which can lead to employment or transfer to a bachelor’s or even master’s degree. Visit IvyTech.edu/agriculture to learn more about the program.