Fresno State starts construction on new greenhouse

Fresno State is adding a brand new addition to their campus. The university is building a new greenhouse.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno State is adding a brand new addition to their campus.

The university is building a new greenhouse. It's something that viticulture students like Marnelle Salie have wanted for years.

"For this happening, it's a light in our future and giving us something to look forward to," said Salie.

The college junior says the viticulture program has been her home away from home since she started at Fresno State.

"I was just a scared freshman, had no friends in the industry, so when I came into this department, I found out it was very small, almost like a community," said Salie.

The program was missing an important element, a greenhouse to call their own.

"There's a lot of opportunities we've missed out on, but now that the greenhouse is going to start building, I'm so excited to bring those companies in and give students more hands-on learning and opportunities," said Salie.

Students took matters into their own hands. They've been raising money for the past seven years. The club raised $300,000 to make the project happen.

"They did some crowdfunding, they do fall harvest BBQ every year, and they started to raise money in order to build a new greenhouse. Because that's the missing link they need for their education," said Stephan Sommer, director of viticulture.

Construction starts on Monday, with estimated completion by this fall.

"Students need to see that, and they need to be part of that," said Sommer.
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