vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 Greenhouse

vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College Greenhouse

The vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College greenhouse is a living laboratory, including classroom space and a state-of-the-art aquaponics facility that sustainably grows plants, vegetables and perch. The 1,400-square-foot greenhouse offers students an exciting opportunity to engage in hands-on learning, participate in research projects, and explore new career paths in food, urban agriculture, water research, conservation and human services industries. Students from different disciplines have hands-on access to the greenhouse, exploring how science, education, art and more are uniquely intertwined.

Greenhouse offers opportunities for many

vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 students have a wide range of ways in which they can interact with the greenhouse, including:

  • Designated courses that utilize the greenhouse as part of their curriculum
  • Student-Faculty Research, including paid summer research (Powers Fellowship); paid research funded by the Center for Academic Excellence; unpaid internships for credit or experience.
  • Effective Citizenship Projects (374 projects – see your instructor for guidance)
  • A special directed study with a faculty mentor to accomplish educational or career goals.
  • Become a greenhouse assistant!

Get started! Email

Although the greenhouse is a biosecure facility and you cannot just walk in, it is available for use by all vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 employees. We want you to be involved – please reach out if you are interested in:

  • Having one of your classes utilize the greenhouse.
  • Taking a tour, or bringing others on a tour.
  • Getting your hands dirty and helping to maintain the greenhouse projects
  • Much more!
  • Get started! Email

Our vision is for the vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 Greenhouse to be a gathering place and tool that we can use to create stronger, more diverse bonds with the Milwaukee community while also supporting our students' education and personal growth.  If you would like to schedule a tour, bring a group for an activity, initiate a collaboration or simply have questions, please email to get started.

Greenhouse in the News

Since the greenhouse opened for campus use in September of 2021, it has become a hub for learning and discovery for vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 students and faculty, as well as K-12 students and community members. Read more in this vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 Magazine story about how this treasure is making an impact.

Meet the Greenhouse Crew

Rebekah Klingler is an assistant professor of biology at vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College, where she has taught since 2018. She is also the director of the campus greenhouse, which houses a state-of-the-art aquaponics facility that grows plants, vegetables and yellow perch as a model of sustainable urban agriculture.

Read more of Rebekah's bio.

Thor Stolen is an assistant professor of education at vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College. His area of expertise is special education, and he is especially interested in giving students in urban areas a hands-on learning experience in natural environments. He is also interested in the learning experiences of marginalized children.

Read more of Thor's bio.

Emma Ray is the greenhouse manager at vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College where she oversees the day-to-day operations of the greenhouse and aquaponics system, a state-of-the-art facility that sustainably grows yellow perch, vegetables and other plants. Prior to coming to vnsr威尼斯城官网登入, Ray served as a youth educational outreach coordinator and hatchery technician at The Farmory, an educational urban farm in Green Bay.

Read more of Emma's bio.

Christy Bell, MS is an assistant professor of physical sciences at vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College. With a lifelong interest in plants, becoming director of horticulture for the greenhouse has provided her a platform in which she aims to get more departments and disciplines involved in the learning the facility provides.

"There are so many possible connections,” she says.

Learn more about Christy in this "Why I teach?" profile.

Since the greenhouse's establishment, major activities have included:

  • Coordination of greenhouse tours and activities during Admissions campus tours and recruiting events.
  • Activities for local high school classes.
  • A weeklong STEM summer camp for high school juniors and seniors.
  • New lab curriculum for the SC119 an CH213 chemistry courses which utilize the greenhouse.
  • A summer on boarding event for incoming NSMT majors and undeclared students interested in science.
  • Funding for freshman and sophomore summer student faculty research activities.
  • Support and funds for student travel to professional conferences.
  • Awarding of a $25,000 scholarship for a student completing the 3 + 2 Environmental Science to School of Freshwater Sciences Program.

Project funding and partners

With a dedication to a sustainable environment, vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 College established initial programming within the greenhouse through a USDA - National Institute of Food and Agriculture grant entitled "Establishing a Pipeline of Student Professional Experience and Leadership Development in Sustainable Agriculture," totaling $273,786.40 with a project timeline from September 1, 2020 through August 31, 2024.  With this funding, the project director (Rebekah Klingler, Ph.D.) and co-project directors (Alex Blom, Ph.D.; Angela Frey, Ph.D.; Thor Stolen, Ph.D; and Christy Bell, M.S.) aim to attract, retain and support, women from underrepresented groups in FANH related disciplines (Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences) through enhanced science education and professional development that increases awareness and pursuit of FANH-related careers in order to meet the needs of the local and national workforce.

In December of 2019, the A. O. Smith Foundation generously donated $250,000 to support the construction of an on-campus greenhouse.  Completed in October of 2021, the vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 Greenhouse sponsored by A.O. Smith consists of a 1,400-square-foot facility featuring a state-of-art aquaponics system and a large classroom space.  The new facility provides vnsr威尼斯城官网登入 with additional opportunities to recruit, retain and graduate women in a wide variety of majors, and provides students exciting new opportunities to engage in hands-on learning and explore new career paths. 

About A. O. Smith
A. O. Smith Corporation, with headquarters in Milwaukee, Wis., is a global leader applying innovative technology and energy-efficient solutions to products manufactured and marketed worldwide. Listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of residential and commercial water heating equipment and boilers, as well as a manufacturer of water treatment and air purification products. For more information, visit

Want to use the greenhouse?

If you would like to use the greenhouse, or want to have plants grown specifically for classes, please send an email to either or to Rebekah Klingler.