Senior Vice President of External Affairs Melik Khoury praised McKay and Thompson, and pointed to the close symmetry between their values and the direction of the College. “As part of our mission, Unity looks to address the challenges faced by rural agricultural enterprises in New England.  These challenges include energy costs, compensation for agricultural workers, a challenging climate, and sparse population density.  This facility will help us develop and model replicable solutions for these challenges, in addition to maintaining a marketplace presence to serve the community.”  Khoury added that although the idea for the gift came almost a year ago, it took about nine months to craft it. “We all worked hard to ensure this gift accomplishes Izzy’s goals and is a strong asset for the College,” he said.

Serving the Next Generation of Successful Farmers

According to McKay, the next generation of farmers needs an education beyond agriculture.

“Many young farmers do not understand that in addition to delivering their product to market, they also must be business managers and handle a host of market complexities,” McKay said.  “It is important that they understand how to address the administrative, legal, and clerical aspects of their agricultural enterprises. I am confident that by choosing Unity College as the beneficiary of Half Moon Gardens, our young agricultural producers will be trained holistically, and learn from both the practical sense as well as from the business point of view.”

“We are especially pleased that the owners of Half Moon Gardens recognized that Unity College has the ability to use the facility in order to create the kind of programs they envisioned for students and others in the community,” said Martha Nordstrom, Director of Development.  “We are fortunate that the philanthropic interests of Half Moon Gardens align with Unity’s core values of respect, personal and institutional integrity, community engagement and environmental sustainability, and are excited to pursue this extraordinary opportunity.”

Friday, December 13, 2013