Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers

Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers

We are youth from the College Bound Program at Boston College growing hydroponic produce to share with the community.

Seeding the Future with Change Makers 14/05/2019

Hi everyone. Check out where our work has shifted into. Our video is up (just 3 minutes). Please take a peak and feel good about the future with these young people who will soon be in leadership positions.

This project focuses on Food Justice and empowering high school youth to use hydroponics to address food access issues in their communities.


Please share as these youth stories are absolutely phenomenal.

Seeding the Future with Change Makers Overview This  CHANGE MAKERS  project engages youth in developing and implementing a Food Justice (FJ) program using a tiered mentoring model in which high school youth will sup...

Seeding the Future through Social Justice Driven STEM 15/05/2017

We got a video made this year :). Check out the wonderful youth in our program. Some of them have been with us for 6 to 7 years, first as students and now as alumni leaders as peer mentors while they are in college. Be sure to VOTE for us and watch till the end as it is awesome. We were particularly pleased to put together that focuses on youth with youth voices describing what the projects have been about (as opposed to the PI team describing it).
The video showcase has a lot of really nifty projects and worth watching, they are all only 3 minutes long.


Seeding the Future through Social Justice Driven STEM Our work with youth combines three components: (1) STEM learning embedded in a social justice framework, (2) a near-peer mentoring approach, and (3) youth purpose and career development. Our propos...

Urban Hydrofarmers Project sows seeds of success among 'resilient' youth 05/10/2015

Of all the news stories and videos of our team's work this one I think is the best that is posted at NSF's Science Nation. The youth are always inspiring, the teachers that we work get to work with are awesome, the undergraduates and graduates students are incredible to work with and so on... However, the youth are just impressive young people and hopefully they are all on their way to successful lives and careers.


Urban Hydrofarmers Project sows seeds of success among 'resilient' youth Teens put science and math to work to become hydroponic farmers and successful green…

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 22/07/2015

We had a great day thanks to Andy Trossello, Adam Felzani, Cynthia Steele Villanueva, Steve Prudent, Tim Gay, Connor Rooney, and the wonderful students at McKinley South End Academy. We built hydroponic systems, solar powered hydroponics systems. Boston Public School high school students explaining the systems operation and science to each other. With Science Nation filming the day. Couldn't ask for a better set of students, teachers, and collaborators.


Boston's McKinley Schools are four schools in one, providing special education for students in kindergarten through grade 12
Focus on emotional, behavioral, and learning needs
Highly structured behavior management system
Intensive clinical supports

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 10/05/2015

So we haven't posted in a bit but we have been hard at work. Solar hydroponics systems up and running, tomatoes growing hardily in the green house and CBS news came and filmed out work about sustainable agriculture!

Timeline photos 06/04/2015

Hi everyone, we are running our annual hydroponics summer institute the last week of July. See the link below to register and the attached flyer. Share with teachers that you think would be interested.


Timeline photos 23/03/2015

We will presenting on Urban Agriculture and STEM learning and Urban Agriculture Innovation

THIS WEEKEND -- Saturday March 28th - 8a-5:30p - Worcester State University - Join the Urban Farming Institute and the MA Dept of Agricultural Resources for their 3rd annual conference showcasing best practices and innovative problem-solving in the emerging field of urban agriculture. The conference brings together the various stakeholders involved in urban farming including farmers, land trust managers, policy makers, commercial buyers, foundations, and investors. Look forward to interactive panels, demonstration workshops, expert discussions on diverse and relevant topics with distinguished conversation leaders, and a networking reception. Get registered at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/3rd-annual-ma-urban-farming-conference-tickets-15053067129

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 20/03/2015

Here we are all set up at the Massachusetts State House... We have set up a hydroponic system, our new robotic arms, and a small solar array to charge up cell phones :). All parts of the hydroponic curriculum.


If you are near the Massachusetts State House on Friday stop in and see us. We will be there all day... talking to Mayors, Senators, Representations, etc... Should be fun. We will have our new robotics on display... and our classroom hydroponic kit, etc...

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 10/02/2015

In case you haven't heard it has been snowing a smidgen in Boston....

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 10/02/2015

Hi everyone. If you happen to be in the Boston area around March 5th. One of our core partners is having a fund raiser to help support the out-of-school time elementary school program. We currently receive more requests for participation that we have capacity to support. So please share with your foodies, etc...

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 07/02/2015

We haven't been posting many picts of late. Along in earlish January the heating unit and the backup unit all failed to our greenhouse. It also happened to be extremely cold. Usually and alarm goes or something goes off (Greenhouse is attached to a building) that something is wrong. That didn't happen either. Of course this happened on new years eve..... so... everything froze. We cleared out and restarted. We are back up and growing, Basil, Sage, Kale, Collard Greens, and Bok Choy....

Timeline photos 28/01/2015

Since we are under 2.5 feet of snow. Thought a good picture of one of our former students shaking hands with a polar bear would be appropriate.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 24/01/2015

More access maps. Look at the car access (means no car ownership) and the density of SNAP benefits.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 23/01/2015

More food access maps of Boston area. Best we think made of the area... Yes,... we know we can't spell convenience... Any guesses on how many people live within a .5 miles of a supermarket and how many don't... and how many of those people who don't are lower income and people of color?

Timeline photos 21/01/2015

Nice map of food access, supermarkets, farmers markets. The food access tracts are defined by the USDA. New maps coming on income, ethnic, etc... There are 400,000 people who live in the low income, low access areas just within the Boston area.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 14/01/2015

As we expand our program we also put our geospatial technology skills to use. next city up is Worcester, MA. What is fascinating here is that Worcester is a city of 180,000 people. The graphs, images below show that 71K or nearly 40% of the population live in an area classified by the USDA as low-income and low-access to healthy food. Note how many kids.


To all of our Chinese friends of this page. We are going to start testing and growing various Chinese herbs/greens. As we will soon start training Chinese science teachers in learning about and using hydroponics in their classrooms.

Learning experience for us.... so what is that you cook and eat? All suggestions welcome (we already know about bok choy... it *loves* hydroponics). All recommendations welcome!! Thanks all!!

Mobile uploads 06/12/2014

Come down and see us at the Egelston Farmers market


We had a great meeting with some great individuals from Pepper's Fine Catering (https://www.facebook.com/pepperscatering) and the Rainbow Children Development Center (https://www.facebook.com/RainbowChildDevelopmentCenter).

Should look them both up. Going to be running training sessions on indoor hydroponics and to help teachers from Pre-K through 6th grow produce and work with Pepper's to create some wonderful food with kid grown produce. Awesome :).

Peppers Artful Events Peppers Artful Events is an award-winning sustainable caterer serving New England.

Urban Agriculture 17/11/2014

Since may be folks who like this page (us!, yay :)! who may be interested in contributing.

We are getting our Urban Agriculture + STEM learning book underway that will be published by Springer as a part of their new series on Urban Agriculture (http://www.springer.com/series/11815). If you know of folks who would be interested in submitting a chapter this is a link to the call for chapter proposals is at the bottom of this note and attached to this message.

This proposed book will cover such topics as how urban youth learn science while engaged in urban agriculture programs, how such programs support youth in becoming interested about healthy eating and science more generally, and how to design urban agriculture programs in support of STEM education. This book will also provide insight for program designers and researchers with chapters that provide guidance and models on how to evaluate the impact of urban agriculture programs on learning outcomes and how engagement in urban agriculture impacts motivation to study science. The key date for now is that December 15th is when chapter proposals are due.


For questions e-mail either Mike Barnett ([email protected]) or Amie Patchen ([email protected])

Urban Agriculture This new Urban Agriculture Book Series at Springer is for researchers, professionals, policy-makers and practitioners working on agriculture in and near urban areas. Urban agriculture (UA) can serve as a multifunctional resource ...

Timeline photos 08/11/2014

Come down and see us today at the Egleston Farmers Market. We will produce that was grown in our solar powered hydroponic systems. The last of the solar powered produce of the season... soon to be BRRR but the greenhouse will be toasty throughout the winter.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 01/11/2014

Post Halloween... mostly... and harvesting the produce outside that was powered by solar energy... that is a really big salad...

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 31/10/2014

How do we start teaching youth about solar energy and their hydroponics systems. By teaching them how to do something they do the moment they enter the lab space... namely they plug in their phone or .mp3 device... Good way to teach parallel and series circuits...and how to build a Wheatsone bridge to "trick" Apple devices into thinking they are connected to an Apple charger.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 30/10/2014

Lookie what we are working on now. How to automate the planting of hydroponic plants and to help kids to connect 21st century agriculture to 21st century technologies. Goal is to teach youth a wide array of skills so they can envision a wide array of future careers for themselves.

Rainbow Child Development Center - 10 Edward Street, Worcester MA 23/10/2014

Very, very, very pleased to report that we are now working with this wonderful group:


They provide after-school care for free PreK-5, 52 weeks a year, to working families (who despite often have multiple jobs) are at or below the poverty line.

We will be installing hydroponic systems in their centers so the older kids can learn some science and sell the produce to raise funds and to take the produce home to their families.

These are the type of projects that remind us why our team often have 15 hour days and 70 hour work weeks.

Rainbow Child Development Center - 10 Edward Street, Worcester MA Rainbow Child Development Center provides high quality early education and care to “at risk” children preparing them for school and the future.

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 22/10/2014

Having a fun and good day presenting and hosting a table at the Massachusetts STEM summit. Fun day learning about all the great STEM activities happening

Photos from Urban Hydr-"O"-Farmers's post 19/10/2014

Our team set up at the Boston College vs. Clemson football game yesterday. Sharing with 50,000 of our closest friends about hydroponics, gesture based robotic arms, and air quality. Got some pretty good questions about the hydroponics.

Mobile uploads 11/10/2014

Given the weather we are doing a buy one get one free sale. Just come and play with our gesture based robotic arm and love it what you would like as your free produce. We are at the egleston farmers market today.

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Videos (show all)

An edited version of the recent TV segment.  Edited down to just our work and an inclusion to recognize the National Sci...