September 25, 2023


Qualified food specialists

URI’s Project stRIde launches summer camps in Providence and Newport

6 min read

Despite having to wait because of the COVID-19 pandemic, elementary school students in Providence and Newport will soon be able to enhance their knowledge of science, technology, engineering, art and math through lessons centered on diet, nutrition and what happens in the kitchen. The new program, which was supposed to start with a summer camp in the summer of 2020, has gone through an extensive formative evaluation and is being piloted this month by the University of Rhode Island College of Health Sciences in cooperation with URI’s Cooperative Extension Network and community partners 4-H and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Providence and Newport County.

The program is funded through a competitive, five-year $639,000 grant from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture as part of the Children, Youth, and Families at Risk program for sustainable community projects. The URI-led program will integrate STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) education and nutrition. In other words, innovative hands-on nutrition lessons have been developed to whet students’ appetites for science.

“Think chemistry and cooking; microbiology and food safety; environmental science and learning how your food grows and where it comes from,” says Sarah Amin, URI assistant professor of nutrition, who is also the project lead in a statement. “We’re very excited to be working with URI Cooperative Extension and our community partners to connect these different concepts in ways that are fun, innovative, sustainable and will also serve to empower the community.”

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