UNH Students Get Resourceful About Giving
Media Contact:  Jody Record
UNH Media Relations
November 4, 2008

Reporters and editors: Nancy Johnson, associate professor of food service management at theThompson School of Applied Science can be reached at 603-862-1050 or at nancy.johnson@unh.edu. Kate Hanson, co-founder of the community leadership program and associate professor of social science at kate.hanson@unh.edu.

DURHAM, N.H. - Students at the Thompson School of Applied Science at the University of New Hampshire have found creative ways to turn their learning into giving.

Take Charlie Smith. A freshman in the community leadership program who works part-time at the Bagelry in Durham, Smith was troubled when bagels that didn't sell as day-olds were thrown away. He and co-worker Kevin Reid started brainstorming on ways to use them and then Smith approached Kate Hanson, co-founder of the leadership program and associate professor of social science, and asked her for suggestions.

Hanson thought students in the dietetic technician program at the Thompson School could use the donated bagels and connected Smith with Nancy Johnson, associate professor of food service management. Johnson turned the task over to her students.

Nick Pray was the team leader for a project, researching recipes for bagel chips. He then organized a team of dietetic technician students to make garlic-flavored and cinnamon- flavored bagel chips for two community dinners held at the Waysmeet Center, where the Cornucopia food pantry is also located. The chips were such a hit, there is talk of the Waysmeet Center buying a food slicer so the project can continue.

And the resourcefulness doesn't stop there. When Cornucopia distributes food baskets to more than 90 needy families during Thanksgiving week, tucked inside will be loaves of bread made by the students in the dietetic technician program as part of the national "Spread the Bread" campaign.

Kim Bruce, a second-year dietetic technician student, organized the bread-making project that led to more than 300 loaves of fresh cranberry, pumpkin, and corn bread being made for the Cornucopia food baskets. 

"I am extremely proud of the dietetic technician students' creativity, caring, and collaboration not only with the community leadership program but the Waysmeet Center," Johnson says. "This project will allow them to reach out and help hundreds of people who are food insecure."

For Smith, who had been studying to become an auto mechanic before a trip to Ecuador made him realize he was meant to work with people not machines, the project has served to reinforce his new career path.

"I'm getting the general idea of how I want to help people," Smith says of the community leadership program. "I want to expand what I'm learning here and take it internationally-take the sense of local community to the international level and help initiate change."

Photograph available to download: http://www.unh.edu/news/cj_nr/2008/nov/bread.jpg.JPG

Caption: Kelly McNally, Keri Parodi and Kim Bruce, students in UNH's dietetic technician program, wrap homemade bread for food baskets being given to the needy this Thanksgiving season.

The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a New England liberal arts college and a major research university with a strong focus on undergraduate-oriented research. A land, sea and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling 11,800 undergraduate and 2,400 graduate students.