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Davis-Manigaulte receives National Urban Extension Award

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Davis-Manigaulte accepting the award

Davis-Manigaulte accepting the award

By Sheri Hall for the BCTR

Jacqueline Davis-Manigaulte’s work with Cornell University Cooperative Extension’s NYC programs (CUCE-NYC) has received national recognition: In May, Jackie accepted the 2017 National Urban Extension Leadership Award, which recognizes excellence in urban extension programming and leadership.

Davis-Manigaulte leads Family and Youth Development Programs and serves as director of community relations for CUCE-NYC, which often works in partnership with the BCTR on research and program delivery.  She received the award at the 2017 National Urban Extension Conference in Bloomington, MN.

“This is well-deserved recognition of Jackie’s outstanding contributions to urban extension in NYC,” said Chris Watkins, Cornell Cooperative Extension director. “Working in any urban setting, let alone NYC, presents great challenges. Jackie has successfully turned these into opportunities to engage youth and the community in healthy eating and active living programs. I am proud of her work on behalf of Cornell University.”

Davis-Manigaulte holds a bachelor’s degree in human development and family studies from Cornell University, a master’s degree in home economics from New York University and a doctorate in adult education from Columbia University.

“Jackie had a vision of being a transformational educator when she was a Cornell undergraduate student, and she has lived by – and lived up to – that vision,” said Jennifer Tiffany, CUCE-NYC’s executive director and BCTR’s director of outreach and community engagement.  “Her work promoting family and youth development, high quality extension programming that is responsive to community needs, and astute network development among agencies and community-based organizations is a model for urban extension.”

Davis-Manigaulte has worked with a wide range of NYC, state, and national organizations to provide youth and family programs that promote experiential learning, leadership development and educational attainment, and encourage healthy eating and active living. She is a principal investigator for the National 4-H Youth Mentoring Program/4-H Tech Wizards Program, a national initiative focused on youth mentoring, community service, and projects that incorporate science and technology.

“It is a pleasure to collaborate with colleagues throughout the city, state, and country to help youth, families, and communities based on the research and resources of Cornell University and the Cooperative Extension System,” Davis-Manigaulte said.  “Our youth are our future, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to their positive development.  I truly appreciate this recognition of my efforts.”

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NYC high schoolers discover opportunity at Big Red STEM Day

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By Jamie Black for the Cornell Chronicle

Anasia Brewster, left, and Alondra Vences, right, students at the High School of Sports Management in Brooklyn, learn how to use electroplating to make a silver penny and a copper nickel, while Cornell University graduate student Arianna Gagnon looks on.

Anasia Brewster (l) and Alondra Vences (r) of the High School of Sports Management in Brooklyn learn how to use electroplating to make a silver penny and a copper nickel, while Cornell University graduate student Arianna Gagnon looks on.

While many New York City high school students might have spent the first Saturday in November playing Pokémon GO, some of their peers were creating their own games using a JavaScript-based code that doesn’t require any prior programming knowledge.

Part of the first Big Red STEM Day, Nov. 5, it was just one of the workshop activities designed to expose high school students from communities underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to educational and career opportunities in those fields.

Held on the Weill Cornell Medicine campus, Big Red STEM Day is a collaborative effort run by students, faculty and staff across Cornell campuses and the New York City Department of Education. While Cornell Tech representatives taught student attendees to create their own Pokémon GO games and SnapChat filters, graduate and undergraduate students from the Ithaca campus showed teens how to use electroplating to make a silver penny and a copper nickel. Medical and biomedical doctoral students taught them how to use staining methods to differentiate bacteria from soil, yogurt and even their mouths, and a Cornell Cooperative Extension associate engaged them in cartography and mapping activities to create their own collaborative design for a neighborhood park.

“Being here today really opened my eyes to the world of science and technology,” said Tamia Phoenix, a junior at Excelsior Preparatory High School in Queens. She was one of 60 students from 10 high schools in Manhattan, Queens and the Bronx to attend the daylong event. Her classmate, Maurice Watson, said, “We got to choose two activities for the day: one that we were potentially interested in for a career and one workshop we may have never considered.”

Organizers hope that attending the college-level STEM program prompts the students to pursue higher education in science and medicine.

“Exposure to STEM is critical for high school students,” said Marcus Lambert, director of diversity and student services at the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences and a STEM Day discussion panel moderator. “It’s that spark, the discovery of what science and technology have to offer them in the future.”

Fatou Waggeh, a high school student at the Manhattan Center for Math and Science, learns how to use staining methods to differentiate bacteria from soil, yogurt and even their mouth.

Fatou Waggeh, a high school student at the Manhattan Center for Math and Science, learns how to use staining methods to differentiate bacteria from soil, yogurt and even someone's mouth.

Not only did Big Red STEM Day immerse the high school students in problem-solving and community-building STEM exercises, it also allowed high school students to network with faculty and undergraduate, graduate and medical students.

“The collaboration among Cornell campuses and the Cooperative Extension office enabled the research that’s being conducted by faculty and graduate students on campus to be translated into an educational opportunity for the underrepresented youth in New York City,” Lambert said.

Jennifer Tiffany, executive director of Cornell University Cooperative Extension-New York City programs, was encouraged by the students’ enthusiasm. “We saw a tremendous response from the students,” she said. “There was so much intensity in their questions, a real interest in expanding their knowledge of STEM.”

The New York City Department of Education urged students to encourage their friends to consider studying STEM courses in college and pursue careers in these fields. “These students will feed the field of research for science, technology and medicine,” Tiffany added. “They are the future.”

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Youth consult on research and media projects

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ACT Youth Network

Sara Birnel Henderson and Michele Luc with Youth Network consultants

The ACT for Youth Center of Excellence sponsors a network for young people who are interested in making change and supporting the health and well‐being of youth in New York State. At its heart is the ACT Youth Network NYC, a panel of young adult and teen consultants who meet monthly to provide youth perspectives on health‐related projects for researchers and organizations. Meetings are held at the offices of Cornell University Cooperative Extension-NYC and are led by Center of Excellence staff Sara Birnel Henderson and Michele Luc.

The ACT Youth Network is available for consultation on health projects that seek to reach youth. Past consulting work has included piloting workshops, surveys, and focus groups, reviewing media campaigns, and giving feedback on written content such as brochures and websites. Topics have ranged from all aspects of health to social causes to community gardening. The ACT Youth Network NYC has consulted for: Weill Cornell Medical College’s Clinical and Translational Science Center; New York State Department of Health’s Bureau of Women, Infant, and Adolescent Health; New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault; New York State Youth Development Team; New York University Lutheran; Love Heals; and Opening Pathways: Youth in Latin America, among others. Individual researchers have also benefited from Youth Network consultations.

The ACT for Youth Center of Excellence was launched in 2000 with generous support from the New York State Department of Health. Housed in the BCTR, the Center of Excellence partnership also includes Cornell University Cooperative Extension - NYC, Ulster BOCES, and the University of Rochester Medical Center.

To find out more about the Youth Network, or to schedule a consultation, contact a Youth Network coordinator:

Find the ACT Youth Network brochure here.

Examples of ACT Youth Network Consulting Projects:

  • Immigrant youth survey
  • Youth clinic survey
  • Sexual orientation curriculum
  • Youth development and health website
  • Sexual health media campaigns
  • Lifelong health focus group pilot
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder messaging for youth

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CUCE-NYC present at urban farming symposium

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CUCE-NYC associate Philson A.A. Warner, left, speaks to a guest at the Grow: Urban Garden Symposium in NYC, Oct. 14.

CUCE-NYC associate Philson A.A. Warner, left, speaks to a guest at the Grow: Urban Garden Symposium in NYC, Oct. 14.

From the Cornell Chronicle:

There is more to urban agriculture than just food production. Urban farming introduces communities, children and adults to the value of green spaces in a city such as New York and allows for the creation of an educational environment where children can come and learn the sciences in an engaging way, according Zach Pickens, an urban farmer at New York City-based Riverpark Farm.

Pickens was one of four panelists talking about “Advanced Urban Farming Techniques” Oct. 14 during the Grow: Urban Garden Symposium in New York City. Also speaking was Cornell University Cooperative Extension-NYC (CUCE-NYC) associate Philson A.A. Warner, who spoke at an advanced urban farming techniques panel. Warner, the founding director of CUCE-NYC’s Hydroponics, Aquaculture, Aquaponics Learning Lab, addressed an audience of about 250 when he described ways to get his pioneering technologies into classrooms across the city.

“We need more experiential learning in classrooms, and we need to engage youngsters in real-time with real technology,” Warner said.

The urban garden symposium was organized by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer’s office – in collaboration with CUCE-NYC, Randall’s Island Park Alliance and the American Museum of Natural History, which also served as the venue for the event. Its purpose was to identify resources for people wanting to start an urban garden or to take their existing gardens to the next level. Said Brewer: “If we can do something right in our neighborhoods then we can do so much good for everyone.”

“It is wonderful to co-sponsor an event that brings together so many New York City residents who are passionate about urban gardening,” said Jennifer Tiffany, CUCE-NYC executive director. “The participants in this symposium show the powerful connections between ‘growing food’ and ‘growing people.’” The symposium kicked off with the “Urban Gardening 101: Where To Start?” panel moderated by Cornell Small Farm Program Director Anu Rangarajan, who questioned the panelists about the key things they did to be successful at urban gardening, the biggest lessons learned, and surprises or benefits they noticed to urban farming.

“We are all about pathways,” Rangarajan said. “We want to support people so that they can get into agriculture and urban gardening.”

“Community gardens registered with New York City Parks GreenThumb have access to soil, resources and connections to organizations such as Cornell Cooperative Extension,” Kenneth Williams, Manhattan outreach coordinator at GreenThumb, told the audience. Some of the biggest lessons Williams said he learned after urban gardening were that it was important to assess the assets in a community and have enough support from other partner organizations and politicians to ensure ongoing preservation.

Addressing a question from an audience member about challenges associated with implementing hydroponics and aquaponics in schools, Cornell scientist Warner said that the learning curve was the biggest drawback. “We at Cornell changed our strategies because we trained teachers in the science department in schools and we went from the community aspect to teaching young people how to producer cleaner, safer food using hydroponics,” he said. Warner also demonstrated his hydroponics technology at the urban garden fair during the symposium using his mini-hydroponics unit. Participants met with exhibitors like Warner and watched live demonstrations.

“Promoting healthy human development and building strong secure food systems are key objectives of Cornell University's research, teaching and outreach programs and of Cornell University Cooperative Extension's work in the city and statewide,” Tiffany said. “Part of our mission is to bridge Cornell research on urban gardening and urban agriculture with the New York City community programs highlighted today. We hope to continue to partner with Gale Brewer and her staff on the work launched with the GROW report on urban gardening and with today's symposium.”

 

Cornell staff advise NYC urban farmers at symposium - Cornell Chronicle

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CUCE-NYC’s urban farming efforts on NPR

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Land grant schools, like Cornell for New York State, provide support to urban farmers when they need such things as soil tests or information about pest control - support that they can't find elsewhere. A recent article on npr.org explains the importance of urban research farms to address the particular challenges faced by urban farmers, such as crop nutrient density and optimizing small growing spaces.

Jennifer Tiffany

Jennifer Tiffany

The BCTR's Jennifer Tiffany, who is director of Cornell Cooperative Extension - NYC, is quoted in the post:

In New York City, for example, Cornell University's Cooperative Extension has one staff member for every 160,000 residents and tries to "make sure that all New York residents benefit from Cornell's research," says Jennifer Tiffany, executive director of the college's city-based outreach.

In New York, the Cornell extension office works alongside dozens of other organizations that add to its work by writing prescriptions for fruits and vegetables that can then be used at nearby farmers markets. Instead of visiting individual farms to offer growers advice, as staff might in a rural setting, Tiffany says her program leads instructional tours that take almost 100 people through an indoor hydroponics facility, showing them just how many calories of food can be grown inside the city buildings.

 

Urban farmers say it's time they got their own research farms - NPR

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CUCE-NYC partnering to expand urban farming in Manhattan

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Philson Warner and Christa Torres demonstrate Cornell’s mobile hydroponics unit.

Philson Warner and Christa Torres demonstrate Cornell’s mobile hydroponics unit.

Cornell Cooperative Extension-New York City (CUCE-NYC), a leader in farming programs in the city, will join with Manhattan borough president Gale Brewer to expand urban agriculture projects in city schools, public housing facilities, and senior centers. The borough will dedicate up to $1 million to such projects in the coming year.

BCTR director of outreach and community engagement Jennifer Tiffany also serves as CUCE-NYC executive director. She described a partnership between Cornell and Manhattan’s Food and Finance High School (FFHS) as a model for urban farming programs that support youth development and STEM education.

Our school-based hydroponics and aquaponics programs will play a key role in the expansion of urban agriculture envisioned by borough President Brewer. We already engage hundreds of New York City youth each year in experiential learning about science and entrepreneurship while supplying schools and local communities with high-quality produce – many varieties of lettuce, herbs and Chinese cabbage – as well as fresh fish.

At the recent press conference announcing the borough's urban farming plans, Brewer also released a report, How Our Gardens Grow: Strategies for Expanding Urban Agriculture, the result of nearly 6 months of surveys, interviews, and site visits with administrators of urban farms in Manhattan. The event also featured a demonstration of a mobile hydroponic farming unit by Philson Warner, CUCE-NYC extension associate, and Christa Torres, a junior at FFHS. A Hydroponic Learning Model, developed by Warner, teaches students through experience.

Additionally, Brewer and CUCE-NYC will hold an Urban Farming Symposium this fall to bring together city farmers and Cornell experts.

 

Cornell seeds urban farming in the Big Apple - Cornell Chronicle

 

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Webinar on “Delivering Extension Programs to the City” now online

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news-tiffany2-inpostJennifer Tiffany, executive director of Cornell University Cooperative Extension's NYC (CUCE-NYC') programs and the BCTR's director of outreach and community engagement presented a webinar on urban extension as part of the Smith-Lever Centennial Webinar Series sponsored by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The April 7th webinar, Delivering Extension Programs to the City, discussed CUCE-NYC's programs and program strategies as a case study. The webinar is now available online here.

Over 80% of the U.S. population lives in urban areas, making effective urban extension programs an essential element of cooperative extension’s work. New and innovative programs that benefit city dwellers also benefit cooperative extension as a system by engaging highly diverse urban residents as staff members, collaborators, and program participants, and by creating opportunities for community-informed research and innovation.

Eighty-five individuals and groups from as far away as Alaska and Hawaii joined the presentation, along with attendees on site at NIFA's offices in Washington, DC. The webinar was organized by NIFA program leader Marty Draper and hosted by NIFA program specialist Ahlishia Shipley, who noted:

Extension plays a critical role engaging communities, forming essential partnerships, and addressing issues unique to urban populations and environments through research-based programs and resources.

 

 Delivering Extension Programs to the City - webinar recording

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CUCE-NYC food access program wins MarketMaker award

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Khin Mar Cho with Gary Matteson

Cornell University Cooperative Extension New York City (CUCE-NYC) received the 2014 Farm Credit MarketMaker Innovation Award for New York for their Faith-Based Food Hubs Program. The program connects NYC Faith-Based Organizations (FBOs) to over 2,000 farms in the state, increasing community access to healthy food and providing new, urban markets for farmers. The program also benefits soup kitchens and food pantries.

Dr. Khin Mar Cho, Senior Extension Associate at CUCE-NYC accepted the award from Gary Matteson, Vice President of Young, Beginning, Small Farmer Programs and Outreach at MarketMaker. Dr. Khin noted,

Our experience during 2013 indicates that this is a viable approach to creating new urban markets for New York farmers in New York City and could be replicated in other New York State urban areas. Part of the attraction is its simplicity. Once established, these 'Food Hubs' should be self-maintaining without external funding, and the market place will maintain itself...

 

CUCE NYC, Khin Mar Cho, wins MarketMaker Award - College of Human Ecology

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Jennifer Tiffany named Executive Director of CUCE-NYC

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Jennifer Tiffany

Jennifer Tiffany

This week College of Human Ecology (CHE) dean Alan Mathios announced that Jennifer Tiffany will permanently serve as Executive Director for Cornell University Cooperative Extension in New York City (CUCE-NYC). She had been acting as interim director since the sudden loss of Donald Tobias in November, 2013.

In addition to her role as BCTR Director of Outreach and Community Engagement, Jennifer will continue to serve as Associate Director-Human Ecology of Cornell Cooperative Extension and as CHE’s Associate Director for Outreach and Extension. These positions, in conjunction with the newly-permanent CUCE-NYC directorship, put her in a prime position to connect and promote center and college research with communities throughout New York State and beyond, while also working to increase community members’, policy makers', and practitioners’ participation in developing research projects and agendas.

Tiffany named NYC cooperative extension director - Cornell Chronicle

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Student hydroponics lab is the only one in NYC

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Jennifer Tiffany, Roger Turgeon, and Jennifer Sirangelo

In the basement of the Food and Finance High School on W. 50th Street in Manhattan, tilapia swim in large, circular tanks. Under the guidance of Cornell Cooperative Extension applied scientist and extension associate Philson Warner, students help raise these and other varieties of fish that go on to be used in school lunches, distributed to green markets, and donated to hunger relief programs. By working in the  Hydroponics, Aquaculture, Aquaponics Learning Lab, students fulfill their state-mandated science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) lab requirements.

Recently Jennifer Sirangelo, National 4-H Council president, toured the labs to see how 4-H students are excelling in STEM projects. The tour was led by students, but the BCTR's Jennifer Tiffany, interim executive director of Cornell University Cooperative Extension - NYC and the school's principle Roger Turgeon we on hand. The labs were originally created as a part of the school's culinary program. The labs also include a hydroponics facility a few floors up. There waste from the fish is used in a nutrient-rich, soil-free culture to raise vegetables. The hydroponics process also serves to clean the water, which is then returned to the aquaponics lab to raise more fish, creating a symbiotic loop.

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Video: Fish Farm Coop, Students Get Along Swimmingly in Hell's Kitchen - NY 1

Big Apple's Only Hydroponic Student Lab Showcased - Cornell Chronicle
Food and Finance High School Impacts Students and 4-H Alum in STEM - 4-H Today

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