John Bowne High School is Flushing is receiving funding to benefit its first hydroponics program.
Assemblywoman Nily Rozic announced on June 17 that she allocated $35,500 in funding for John Bowne’s hydroponic program, an alternative method of growing plants without soil by using water-based nutrient solutions.
The use of hydroponics is part of John Bowne’s agriculture program which has been nationally recognized for its urban agricultural education offerings including classes in plant and animal sciences. It is the only school in New York City with a four-acre farm.
“John Bowne’s agriculture program provides students with learning opportunities and internships paving the way for their future careers as veterinarians, laboratory technicians, urban farmers, landscape architects and much more,” said Rozic. “Hydroponics and aquaponics are an important part of sustainable agriculture, especially in space-scarce urban areas. It is with great excitement that I am able to provide state funding for their cutting-edge hydroponics program that will keep their students at the forefront of the agriculture industry.”
The funding provided by Rozic for the program, John Bowne Assistant Principal Steven Perry said, teachers will be able to provide hands-on instructions to students in hydroponic systems and crop production.
“This instructional exposure could easily lead to some students going on for further study in this field as well as immediate employment in the many urban and rural operations currently in production,” said Perry. “The assemblywoman has always been a great supporter of our program and often visits with our kids and faculty, whether on-site or in Albany where she has hosted us when the Assembly is in session. We are greatly appreciative for all she has done for our department.”
John Bowne’s agricultural program provides students provides students with a work-based learning approach that prepares them for admission into agricultural and technical colleges across the country. Last year, the program was recognized by New York state as a Career and Technical Education Model Program, which allows the program structure and curriculum to be shared with other schools across the state for potential implementation.