Rutgers Community Comes Together to Help Fight the Spread of the Ebola Virus in West Africa

Jim Simon sorting supplies bound for Liberia at the REHS building on the Livingston campus.

Jim Simon sorting supplies bound for Liberia at the REHS building on the Livingston campus.

In August, Jim Simon, professor of plant biology and pathology at Rutgers, “just couldn’t sit still and do nothing” when, like the rest of the world, he began to get a better sense of the growing threat of the Ebola virus in West Africa through daily news reports. In addition, he was getting frantic requests for medical supplies and protective gear from colleagues attached to partner institutions in Liberia, in particular the JFK hospital at the University of Liberia and the Agave teaching clinic at Cuttington College.

Simon felt he needed to mobilize some effort to get desperately-needed supplies to folks on the ground, especially in Liberia, which has emerged as the country hardest hit by the epidemic. A member of the Princeton Fire Department, he’s been trained in Incident Command & Emergency Response and was a Lieutenant in Hook and Ladder Fire Company. “Because of my training, I had a sense of the need for logistical and practical support by the folks who are in the midst of dealing with an emergency,” said Simon.

He and several Rutgers colleagues, including faculty and staff from the Centers for Global Advancement and International Affairs, School of Pharmacy, The New Jersey School of Medicine in Newark,  Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick and myriad other units, identified Liberia as the beneficiary of their immediate fundraising efforts due to the existing ties between Rutgers and Liberia. [Read more...]

Rutgers Food Innovation Center Wins Award from U.S. Small Business Administration

The Rutgers Food Innovation Center (FIC), a food business incubation and economic development program of the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) as a winner of its first Growth Accelerator Fund competition.

Natale Grande and The Flying Meatball team inspecting, sorting and packaging gourmet meatballs. Photo credit: The Flying Meatball Company.

Natale Grande and The Flying Meatball team inspecting, sorting and packaging gourmet meatballs at FIC in Bridgeton. Photo credit: The Flying Meatball Company.

The FIC is the only recipient from New Jersey to earn this award and will receive a cash prize of $50,000 to create the infrastructure for developing this new accelerator program. The winners will be honored in Washington, D.C., by the SBA, in partnership with the Global Accelerator Network, at a Fly-In Day in November, which is designated National Entrepreneurship Month.

“We are very excited to be selected by the SBA for this award”, said Lou Cooperhouse, director of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center. “We have been recognized globally for our economic development impacts and now we will be able to take our Center to an even higher level – by creating linkages between our clients and the funding community.”

“This award is indicative of the commitment by Rutgers in regional economic development”, said Margaret Brennan-Tonetta, associate vice president of economic development at Rutgers. “The Rutgers Food Innovation Center is a model for university public-private partnerships that generates significant economic impacts for the state. The new Growth Accelerator program that the center will establish with this funding will dramatically increase these impacts and maximize its benefits to the food industry.” [Read more...]

New Rutgers Students Get Intro to New Brunswick Through Start with Service Program

First-year students at Rutgers got a chance to pitch in on some community service projects in their new city before classes even began this fall. The new Start with Service program aims to build a legacy of service at Rutgers. Nutritional Sciences major Shaun Hui (SEBS 2016) discusses first year students’ introduction to the community of New Brunswick.


Video: Start with Service at Rutgers

Jersey Crowds Brave the Sunshine to Taste Tomatoes: 2014 Tomato Tasting at Rutgers Snyder Farm

2014 Great Tomato Tasting

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While always well attended rain or shine, a record number of people pre-registered for the 2014 Tomato Tasting.

Armed with plastic forks, a crowd descended upon Rutgers Snyder Research Farm in Pittstown on August 27 to attend the Annual Snyder Farm Open House and Great Tomato Tasting. Tasters had an offering of eighty varieties of tomatoes to taste from as well as basil, peaches, apples and honey. The samplings provided a glimpse of some of the research crops grown at Snyder Farm and hayride farm tours gave an up close look at fruit and vegetable trials in the field. [Read more...]

NJTV News Segment on Helping Struggling Veterans Spotlights Rutgers VETS Program

In the August 28 segment of NJTV News on “Helping Struggling Veterans,” the recently launched Rutgers VETS program was featured (appears at 1:35 in video). This unique program, led by Jan Zientek, senior program coordinator for Rutgers Cooperative Extension (RCE) of Essex County, and Amy Rowe, environmental and resource management agent, RCE Essex and Passaic counties, offers job training skills in horticulture while focusing on entrepreneurship.
Video: NJTV News: Helping Struggling Veterans