HNU students will soon have campus-grown vegetables as an option to their dining choices. Rufino Quicho, general manager at Epicurean Group, has established a small organic garden within one of the courtyards on campus. Epicurean Group manages food service operations at Holy Names University.
The garden will be named after Sister Ethel Mary Tinnemann who taught for 45 years, resided in the dorms, and grew many of the plants and trees throughout the HNU campus. The Tinnemann Courtyard Kitchen Garden will serve students in multiple ways. Primarily, it will be used to supply a small amount of organically grown herbs and vegetables for the meals served in HNU’s Public Market dining hall. In addition, Quicho hopes to use the garden as an educational tool in order to teach the HNU community about food systems and organic gardening. Students are also invited to work in the garden. In this way, they are introduced to the value of growing organic food and how to do it, and their support will allow Quicho to expand the garden.
Quicho’s garden concept is an example of Epicurean Group’s focus on educating clients, students, and families about how food choices affect health, the environment, and the community. With HNU’s emphasis on social responsibility, the Epicurean Group’s environmentally and socially responsible management practices make them a valued partner.
HNU President William J. Hynes, PhD, points out, “Mary Clark Bartlett, founder of Epicurean Group, conceived of a better way to give people wholesome, locally-grown, delicious food. HNU was the third institution to sign with Epicurean Group. Now, Rufino Quicho carries this mission to a new level for the University.”
Although the newly established Tinnemann Courtyard Kitchen Garden is a first for HNU, Epicurean Group has established gardens for several of its clients. Quicho explains, “I wanted students to have an opportunity to learn and grow (food) at the same time. “ Quicho and his wife, Christina, donated the materials for the construction of the garden.
This story was featured in The Montclarion on Friday, April 17, 2015.