Sunday, 4/24: Tour the New Bronson Healthy Living Campus Open House

This is a cool, innovative, fascinating new thing in our community; and although it’s not a pure-vegan campus there will be a plant-based component to the teaching and other activities. Faculty will be available during the tour to explain the various programs, and we may come up with some ideas for collaboration. Let’s meet at 2:00 p.m. at 418 E. Walnut Street (see map). — Hillary 

The Food Innovation Center opened at the beginning of the winter 2016 semester. The first students to use the facility are enrolled in Introduction to Sustainable Food Systems, Food Safety Essentials, Winter Crops Practicum, and Food Industry Career Planning. Tiny sprouts of microgreens, radishes, cabbage, kale, cilantro and basil offer just a glimpse of what’s coming. Soon, the live wall in the visitors’ center will be covered with plants. The grow room will house hydroponic and aquaponic growing systems, and a space-saving, vertically stacked growing rack system that’s popular in dense urban areas. The building houses labs and a large classroom. There is also a 9,600-square-foot greenhouse on the grounds with shades that provide light and temperature controls and a self-venting roof. The building is located at 224 East Crosstown Parkway.

At 418 East Walnut Street, the Kalamazoo Valley Culinary/Allied Health Building connects food and health. It is the home for students enrolled in the new Menus That Matter ™ Culinary and Sustainable Food Systems programs. The three-story structure houses a culinary theatre, community education kitchen and will include a full-service teaching restaurant and café. The Kalsec © Center for Sustainable Brewing Education is located on the second floor and includes a teaching brewery, classroom spaces, and labs. The building will also be the new home for Kalamazoo Valley students enrolled in nursing, emergency medical technology and respiratory care programs. Students will train in state of the art simulation labs, spacious classrooms and an ambulance which was hoisted into position during the construction of the building. Students are expected to occupy the space beginning this summer.

Kalamazoo Community Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, (KCMHSAS) a partner in the project, has constructed a 17,000 sq.ft. person-centered clinic and pharmacy at 615 East Crosstown Parkway. This integrated, health-services clinic opened in December.

All of the April 24 events are free and shuttles will be available between all three buildings on the Bronson Healthy Living Campus and the Kalamazoo Valley Museum. More information here.