University Terrace

University United Methodist Church has an over 27 year history with University Terrace. The church officially “adopted” the school in 1983. Since then we have taken part in numerous community projects to help the school, through fund raising, beautification, and just general emotional and physical support.

Our largest support to the UT community is through our Kids Hope partnership, but many other programs are ongoing. The church also supports the UT Edible Garden, Weekly Book Clubs, Art Club, and provides uniforms and school supplies to the students.

If you would be interested in helping us further our commitment to University Terrace please contact the church office or our Kids Hope Director, Shirley Flake, at


The University Terrace Gardens

UT teacher and Coach Tom Talley started the garden over 10 years ago with a vision for beautifying the school and donated plants from local nurseries. With the help of Master Gardeners, 4-H students, and faithful Kids Hope USA volunteers from University United Methodist Church, the garden has grown to include an International Children’s Garden with plants native to the 35 countries represented by the student body.
Introducing the new Edible Garden
The new UT “Edible Garden” is the product of many individuals:
•    Dr. K. Mark Weaver – Thomas H. Daigre Endowed Professor of Business at LSU.
•    Dr. Marybeth Lima – Biological Engineering Professor, is coordinating the playground project and will work with Dr.
Weaver to fully integrate the Edible Garden into the building of the wellness/playground project. 

The Garden was created to promote wellness and healthy eating which can be integrated into educational programs. Crops from the edible garden will be distributed to the students that work in the garden as “crop rewards” to take home to their families. The school was selected for an outdoor classroom/playground improvement project by the Gulf-South Summit on Service Learning and Civic Engagement in Higher Education.

Measures of Success
The most important success measures are how students involve themselves in the Edible Garden project and are provided an opportunity to learn to eat healthier. Some outcomes that can be expected from student involvement in the project
•    reduced disciplinary problems,
•    reduced absenteeism, and
•    increased wellness and fitness.
While many factors affect these outcomes, current research shows that healthy eating with active play during the school day positively affects these success criteria. 

The Edible Garden has:
•    32/52 foot bed areas being defined,
•    A raised bed planting design
•    An “Outdoor Classroom” to integrate the garden experiences into lessons
•    Benches for students in the Outdoor Classroom
•    Potting Benches implemented by the Eagle Scouts
•    Composting beds implemented by the Eagle Scouts
•    A tool shed implemented by the Eagle Scouts
•    16 Cubic Yards of NEW garden soil (donated)
•    Mulching
•    A Watering system
•    A weather station so KIDS can beat the weatherman!
•    WHIMSEY items for a fun element to the garden
•    Notice Boards for daily work “to do” lists in the garden
•    And lots of sweat and love to do whatever else needs to be done