Cal Poly San Luis Obispo -- September 19, 2003

Corona del Mar's Sherman Gardens Selects Two Cal Poly Students for Full Scholarships

Two Cal Poly students majoring in environmental horticultural science were chosen by Sherman Library and Gardens of Corona del Mar to receive a new scholarship that will pay all their costs -- from fees and books to board and personal expenses -- for the 2003-2004 school year.

Matthew Maggio of Van Nuys and Amanda Clanton of Valley Center were chosen for Arnold D. Haskell Scholarships on the basis of academic achievement, community involvement, personal interviews and an essay on their educational and career goals.

The scholarships, named in honor of the Sherman Library and Gardens' founder, were funded by the M.H. Sherman Co. on the Gardens' behalf and were initiated this year specifically for Cal Poly horticulture students.

"Cal Poly has an excellent reputation, and the College of Agriculture is one of the premier undergraduate agriculture programs in the nation," according to a statement from the Sherman Co. "Nurturing future talent to support the development and management of public gardens was a key factor in our decision to provide these scholarships."

“I was overwhelmed with the generosity and vision of the Sherman Co. in making this commitment," said Jennifer Ryder Fox, head of Cal Poly's Horticulture and Crop Science Department. "This investment in the future of horticulture is significant, and the Haskell Scholarships will truly make a difference in the lives of these students, enabling them to continue their education without financial worry.”

Maggio cultivated plants in his parents' back yard as a young boy and began marketing home-grown plants seven years ago. The former Eagle Scout hopes to work at a public garden and eventually open his own nursery, with a specialty in cactus and succulents. Maggio is active with the American Society for Horticulture Science, the university's Leaning Pine Arboretum, the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and the National Ornamental Horticulture Honor Society.

Clanton developed a love for horticulture as a little girl planting marigold seeds at her apartment complex. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in landscape design, focusing on small-scale designs for public gardens. Clanton is active in the student chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects and the American Society for Horticulture Science and is a student liaison between the Environmental Horticultural Science Club and other clubs in the College of Agriculture. She also does volunteer work developing gardens for the homeless day center Beyond Shelter.

Maggio and Clanton will have the opportunity to work in a paid, six-week internship program at Sherman Library and Gardens next summer, gaining experience with propagation, planting, maintenance, feeding, grooming and the gardens' computerized inventory.

"Cal Poly’s philosophy is 'learn by doing,' and these internships definitely support that premise, preparing students for their future,” said Sherman Gardens' Director Wade Roberts, himself a 1966 Cal Poly horticulture graduate.

Sherman Library and Gardens, an educational and cultural center filling a city block in Corona del Mar, is open to the public daily. The library houses a research center devoted to the study of the Pacific Southwest, containing a specialized collection of rare books, photos, maps and papers from the past 100 years. The horticultural display gardens present 2,000 species of plants from all over the world. Education and public programs in history, horticulture and the arts include group tours for children and adults, classes and seminars, lectures, book clubs, local garden tours, facilities for wedding rentals, special events, national and international travel opportunities, and public visits.

More information on Sherman Library and Gardens is available on the Internet at www.slgardens.org.

Media Contacts: Jennifer Ryder Fox (805) 756-1237 or Stacy Ellison (805) 756-2993


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