Class Project Becomes a Reality for Alumna Katie Salz

For her Food Systems class last year, recent grad Katie Salz (Environmental Education ’10) created a plan for an organic community garden in the Arlington area of Jacksonville, Florida.

Her school project, now named the Arlington Community Garden, is a reality thanks to her hard work and the support and enthusiasm from the local community and area non-profits. The garden had its grand opening on August 7 and features thirty seven plots available to the public for planting.

Located in the Tree Hill Nature Center, the garden gives area residents a place to grow organic food and promote healthy living. Gardeners will also be encouraged to share the bounty of their crops by giving to area food banks. “The tagline here ‘Growing Food and Community’ really embodies it for me,” said Katie when interviewed by the Florida Times-Union in August.

Environmental education director Libby McCann was thrilled to see how Katie’s class project became a reality. “I was impressed with Katie’s proactive efforts in getting to know her soon-to-be new community in Florida. …The community-building and professional skills she gained at Antioch served her well in that regard.”

Currently Katie is working as the parent and community organizer with War on Poverty. The initiative is part of Jacksonville, Florida’s New Town Success Zone project, which is based on the work of the Harlem Children’s Zone.

Listen to Katie Salz as she is interviewed by the Florida Times-Union here.

Learn more about the Arlington Community Garden here.

Learn more about AUNE’s Department of Environmental Studies, Environmental Education program here.