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Students Share Science Research, Message of Resilience at Youth Sustainability Conference

Student ingenuity and perseverance were on display Wednesday, 5/19 at NY Sun Works’ 10th annual Discovering Sustainability Science Youth Conference.

Learning about the life of plants, taking care of my own plants at home, has helped me to understand more about healthy food we can grow for ourselves. I love hydroponic science!”
— Emily, from PS 219 Kennedy-King Elementary School, Brooklyn, NY
NEW YORK, NEW YORK, USA, May 21, 2021 / -- On Wednesday, May 19th, public school students from NYC and NJ came together virtually to share their independent science research at NY Sun Works’ 10th Annual Discovering Sustainability Youth Conference.

Students shared their work on a range of science and sustainability topics, including the effects of temperature on plant growth, the role of nutrient concentration in hydroponics, and the impact of microplastics on the environment. In most years, the students present the independent STEM and sustainability research they’ve undertaken in their school’s hydroponic labs. But this year, due to COVID, their work has been done entirely from home, making their achievements all the more impressive.

Said Emily, from PS 219 Kennedy-King Elementary School in Brooklyn, “Learning about the life of plants, taking care of my own plants at home, has helped me to understand more about healthy food we can grow for ourselves. I love hydroponic science!”

Participating schools included East Orange STEM Academy • Edward R. Murrow High School • New York Harbor School • PS 176 The Ovington School • PS 219 Kennedy-King Elementary • PS 333 The Manhattan School for Children • St. Saviour High School • West End Secondary School

Joining the students were special guests Daniella Piper, the NY Power Authority’s Chief Transformation Officer and Danielle Corbin, Author and 6th Grade Science Teacher at South Bronx Early College Academy. Past speakers have included actor Alan Alda, Dr. Dixson Despommier of Vertical Farm & Columbia University, and Dr. Gioia Massa of NASA.

“I’m impressed by these students’ determination and resilience and grateful to their teachers for all of their hard work and dedication,” says Manuela Zamora, Executive Director of NY Sun Works. “Students today are the innovators of tomorrow and the investigative work they’ve done, even under these very challenging circumstances, shows exactly the kind of creative, adaptive thinking we need to solve sustainability challenges now and in the future.”

About NY Sun Works
NY Sun Works is an NYC-based non-profit organization dedicated to improving K-12th grade science & sustainability education in public schools. Our hydroponic farm classrooms and comprehensive STEM curriculum provide year-round, hands-on environmental science education through the lens of urban farming. Students learn plant biology, ecology, conservation, and sustainable development, all while growing fresh produce to share with their school and families. We envision a generation of environmental innovators, empowered to create solutions to global resource challenges. For more information, please visit

Elana Mass
NY Sun Works
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