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EXPERIENCE

Ithaca College Permaculture Garden

 

What is possible with 50 square feet?

The moment I set foot on the Ithaca College campus, I knew I wanted to garden. I began the Ithaca College Permaculture Garden project during my freshman year, and continued it throughout my college experience. This garden was the perfect opportunity for me to share my love of good food and growing things with my community on campus, and has inspired me to pursue a career in ecological landscape design.

Ithaca College Natural Lands

 

Stewardship in my backyard

One of Ithaca College's not-so-secret treasures are its 500+ acres of natural areas surrounding the campus. As a student leader with the Ithaca College Natural Lands, I co-authored the Ithaca College Natural Lands Management Plan, which is now guiding the Natural Lands Committee in all current and future land management decisions. Through independent research, and working with the Natural Lands, I was able to study the commonalities between gardening and natural areas management.

ENVS 104:
Gardens:
Ecological Design and Practice
Growing and learning together

During my second year at Ithaca College, I wrote a course proposal for a 1-credit class that would immerse students in the philosophy and practice of organic gardening, based entirely in the student-run organic and permaculture gardens. The course was approved, and has now been offered for 3 semesters, with a peer-teaching component giving students an opportunity to teach sections of the course as a Course Assistant. I have been a Course Assistant for all 3 classes so far, and thoroughly enjoy teaching my peers about the joys and challenges of organic gardening.

Retirees in Service to the Environment
Nature for everyone

As an extension of my work with the Ithaca College Natural Lands, I served as the project coordinator for the very first offering of the Retirees in Service to the Environment Program. "RISE" is a collaboration between the Ithaca College Gerontology Institute and the Ithaca College Natural Lands, connecting retirees in the Ithaca area with learning and volunteer opportunities on the Natural Lands and beyond. Working with this program in its formative years has inspired me to work towards more accessibility as I seek to connect communities to the natural environment that surrounds them, and to bring often-marginalized communities to a more empowered and central position in the movement to care for the earth.

Biochar Research

 

Sustainable soil

While at Ithaca College I worked with a team of students on biochar research, studying its effect on root length and plant mass when incorporated at different depths in the soil. Biochar is pyrolized biomass, generally combined with compost and used as a soil amendment for agricultural production.

Cultural Immersion

 

That's not a cow, that's a heifer!

For my major at Ithaca College, I sought out a cultural immersion in rural Wisconsin, where I worked on a dairy farm for one month. I worked with calves primarily, feeding and watering them daily, but also got to experience a wide range of work on the farm, including shadowing a vet for a day. I learned the many complex processes that lead to dairy products, and as a result I now choose to buy high-quality products and know the producer before buying, so that I can ensure that my money goes to these small farmers who keep our dairy economy going and push the industry towards more sustainable innovations.

Let's Talk
Just a sample of my work. To see more or discuss possible work >>
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