Shania Clarke & Alysha Ramirez's Conference Speech: A Case Study on "Gothic Harvest 2015"

Transcript of the speech presented by UAGC students on June 2, 2016 for the NY Sun Works Annual Youth Conference, "Discovering Sustainability Science," at Symphony Space.


A: Hi I’m Alysha Ramirez.

S: I’m Shania Clarke and we are from The Urban Assembly School for Green Careers on 84th and Amsterdam.

A: Please enjoy this quick case study on a sustainably minded Fine Dining Event we planned and hosted last year for NY Sun Works.

A: Our Stakeholders consisted of the Urban Assembly School for Green Careers (UAGC), The Insurgo Project, and NY Sun Works.

S: Our school focus is on responsibility, intentionality, and collaboration between both the students and staff.

S: Who is The Insurgo Project?

A: Insurgo harnesses the power of localization to secure food access for high-need communities. Their goal is to merge local farms, local restaurants, and local Chefs with local residents to sponsor environmental sustainability and economic growth.

S: The primary focus of the Stakeholders’ partnership was to create a paid internship opportunity that provided social entrepreneurial training, immersive hands on learning with social and emotional engagement.

A: On November 16th of 2015 after 2 months of training from the Insurgo Project, we hosted a fine dining event for NY SunWorks. The fundraiser focused on gathering support to launch a new high school curriculum written by NY Sunworks and Insurgo that will foster food entrepreneurialism and justice.

Gothic Harvest also occurred as a component of Cathedral Saint John the Divine’s “Value of Food” celebration. Cathedral Saint John is located on the Upper West Side and showcased a 6 month long exhibition on modern humanity’s connection to food.   

S: Under training from the Insurgo project, the hired student team, including Alysha, Gary (who’s just over there), and myself, we were challenged to imagine an elegant evening for 46 guests.

S: The first task that we needed to achieve was to create a table for our guests.

From a bunch of music stands in our auditorium we assembled several versions of potential table maps that would function best for a formal dining event.

Our team landed on a banquet table because it engaged conversation and we wanted the guest to share ideas on how to sponsor positive reform in our public schools.

A: Professional student service in action!

On the left, our lead server, Roschellys is properly dropping off a plate, on the left hand side, while explaining the dish to one of the guests.

And On the right, Sallie Mae is listening to our general manager, GM, Shania. Shania is directing Sallie to where she will be dropping off the baby pumpkin course. Behind Sallie, Sira is waiting on deck with the baby pumpkin to be dropped off. It was quite challenging to get all of the plates out on time for all 46 guests.  

A: The Anova immersion circulator is one of the products we used to make a 64 degree egg. A 64 degree egg is an egg that is boiled to 64 degrees where the yolk is still liquidy. The immersion circulator is a culinary tool used to keep foods at a stable temperature by sending out currents to keep the temperature the same in the bath.

A: Liquid nitrogen is a chemical that is super cold at about -328 degrees fahrenheit. It will freeze anything it instantly touches. We used it to make a vanilla bean ice cream.

S: Our Sun Works hydroponic greenhouse laboratory is used to grow food for cooking classes and as a nursery for our urban farm. Our setup consist of three different styles of hydroponic systems and more than 10 grow lights.

A: The menu written by Chef Harold Villarosa, showcased key components grown in our hydroponics greenhouse laboratory.

S: Some of the featured herbs included were Purple Shiso, Dill, Cilantro and Basil.

A: We hope to have more employment and problem solving opportunities like this in the future.

S: Thank you Sidsel, Manuela, Nathaniel, Jennifer, and Insurgo for making this amazing experience possible.