Student Farmers elevate Student Farming in Ohio


Posted on Thursday 4th August 2022
Student Farming

Our GREENandSAVE Staff is pleased to inform our members and readers about organizations that are helping to promote sustainability. If you would like us to profile your organization please Contact Us.

Student Farmers is actively looking to recruit a student ambassador in Ohio, as well as farm mentors in Ohio that can help guide students. Overall, student farming is a great way to reduce the distance from farm to table and increase health for students as well as their parents.

Here is an overview on Student Farmers 

Student Farmers is a growing group of students who are committed to in-home and in-school sustainable farming as a means to promote physical fitness and environmental stewardship.

Our Mission: To improve health and nutrition education, combat the challenges of climate change, and support each other in generating some revenue to help pay for college.

Our Vision: To increase knowledge about the advantages of eating more heathy and locally grown vegetables across the range of high school and college age students. We also hope that many of the parents of the students will learn from their children’s engagement in our organization and adopt a diet with less processed foods to reduce the growing cost of healthcare. 

Here is an example of an agriculture education program in Ohio:

OU Student Farm gives sustainable food experience to all

What once started as a small garden, the Ohio University Student Farm, 338 W. State St., has blossomed into a giving tree for both students and the community.

Forty years ago, James Cavender, professor emeritus in plant biology, started building the space as a learning garden for OU students. Initially, the Learning Garden, known as the Circle Garden, was intended for plant biology students particularly interested in growing their own personal garden.

Art Trese, associate professor emeritus of sustainable agriculture and previous OU Student Farm coordinator, said the main appeal of the Circle Garden is the hands-on experience students can get from working there.

“I use the term often: it’s a ‘human scale,’” Trese said. “It’s meant to mean that a lot of it is done by hand. The biggest piece of equipment we have is this rototiller. And the rest of it — the weeding and the planting and harvesting, packaging — is all done by people with two hands.”

Roughly 30 years after the learning garden was built, Trese began thinking of expanding the garden for more student learning opportunities. 

“I started thinking about funding a more stable use of the space for student learning in particular,” Trese said. “We wanted to have a program where students could be interns on a farm — our farm or other farms. So, we started developing it as a small business. We could generate the funds to support the assignments and the farm.”

The process of expansion began by giving birth to new arrangements like the OU high tunnel and annex.

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