One of Tamara’s main teaching roles is to provide opportunities for supervised practice and service learning to dietetics students. She teaches a Practicum course each semester and is fortunate to work with fellow dot-connectors to create abundant opportunities for students to truly “get their hands dirty” in learning to promote a love of good, simple, whole foods that are also delicious. She believes it’s gratifying to know that graduates from the USU Dietetics Programs won’t simply encourage consumption of kale by extolling its nutrients – they will know how to plant it, harvest it, massage it, or preserve it and turn it into an aromatic and soul-warming dinner in the dark days of winter.
Years back, students were shocked to learn that food travels an average of 1500 miles, and had ideas about incorporating more local food on campus. Tamara began dreaming of a campus garden as a model for using small, unconventional spaces to grow food, since she’d just toured Denver Urban Gardens and the concept made good sense.
She eyed potential nooks and crannies across campus – one being the area behind the NDFS building. Facilities approved use of the space for a teaching garden if it would be maintained and funded. She was fortunate to meet Roslynn Brain, a brilliant implementer and writer of proposals, and the permaculture garden focusing on edible plants began to come to fruition.
She looks forward to the continued growth of the Permaculture Garden so its bounty can be incorporated into a number of student projects, including the Soup Connection. This is a soup and bread “shares” program similar to a CSA. During late summer and early fall, students procure and preserve produce from local growers, including the USU Student Organic Farm. The vegetables are the inspiration for soups that are distributed with nutrition tips and a loaf of locally-produced bread. Giving students the ability to use produce and herbs grown right outside of the NDFS kitchen seems like a dream come true.
Professional Practice Professor,
Director Didactic Program in Dietetics
USU Department of Nutrition & Food Sciences
750 N 1200 E, UMC 8700
Logan, UT 84322-8700
Phone: 435 797 3467