Summer better than others: From Farm to Table

Summertime around SPHTM is often quiet as students and faculty alike go abroad for research, practica, and travel courses. But for some undergraduate public health students and local area high school students, this summer was a time for diving deep into public health issues and honing skills.
—DEE BOLING

FROM FARM TO TABLE
Who knew summer could be so tasty? A group of public health students now do after participating in the inaugural Tulane Public Health Summer Institute. Over four weeks, students learned about nutrition, epidemiology, food systems, sanitation, and alternatives to current food system methods.

From Farm: Mr. Taylor talks to students Emily Cardinas, Victoria Novak, and Merri Van Meter and teaching assistant Lori Anderson about the urban farm used by Ye Olde College Inn restaurant on Carrollton Avenue

From Farm: Mr. Taylor talks to students Emily Cardinas, Victoria Novak, and Merri Van Meter and teaching assistant Lori Anderson about the urban farm used by Ye Olde College Inn restaurant on Carrollton Avenue

“Nutrition and food is a hot topic in public health and among our students,” says LuAnn White, interim dean of the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. “The great food in New Orleans makes this topic a natural. The question for public health is: how do we enjoy the great food, yet eat healthy?”

To Table: Chef April from the Edible Schoolyard at Green Elementary worked with students to make a farm-fresh salad from scratch. Assistant Professor Lorelei Cropley was surprised to find that one student had never chopped green onions before.

To Table: Chef April from the Edible Schoolyard at Green Elementary worked with students to make a farm-fresh salad from scratch. Assistant Professor Lorelei Cropley was surprised to find that one student had never chopped green onions before.

Along with numerous interactive field trips and listening to a number of industry speakers, students earned six credits spread out over two consecutive courses taught by Lorelei Cropley and Elisabeth Gleckler, both assistant professors.

Junior Victoria Novak said she was drawn to the institute by her interest in food systems and agriculture.

“I started out not really knowing about nutrition and honestly thought counting calories was annoying,” Novak says. The institute changed her outlook, especially since she recently moved off campus and has to cook her own meals. “It was interesting to learn what ‘healthy food’ really means.”

Students Victoria Novak and Emily Cardinas spin hive frames from Assistant Professor Betsy Gleckler’s backyard beehives on a field trip.

Students Victoria Novak and Emily Cardinas spin hive frames from Assistant Professor Betsy Gleckler’s backyard beehives on a field trip.

Field trips introduced students to different aspects of the food system — a trip to Houma, La., to visit an oyster processing facility; stops at local markets and backyard beehives and chicken coops to learn about urban agriculture; and visits to local restaurants with a focus on food inspection and safety.

Summer better than others, part two: Emerging Scholars Rise From the Oil Spill

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About Tulane University SPHTM

Tulane's School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is the oldest school of public health in the country and the only American school of tropical medicine. Our mission is to advance public health knowledge, promote health and well-being, and prevent disease, disability, and premature mortality. This is accomplished through academic excellence in education of public health professionals, rigorous scientific research of public health problems, creative partnerships to advance the practice of public health, and innovative service to the local, national, and international public health community.
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