Courses Integral to the Student Sustainable Farm

Summer Course Offering: The Principles and Practices of Small-scale Organic Agriculture

This three credit, 300-level course is intended to offer an introduction to the principles and practices of small-scale organic agriculture. 

The Student Sustainable Farm at Rutgers Gardens is focused on organic production and community involvement.  As an outdoor classroom, the Farm provides place-based and hands-on learning.  In a broader context, the Farm provides the foundation for a wide spectrum of community outreach and programs, research opportunities and entrepreneurial pursuits.  Students enrolled in The Principles and Practice of Small-Scale Organic Farming will gain experience with all aspects of basic organic vegetable, fruit and herb production, from field preparation to harvest.  Through weekly readings and responses, lectures – with guests from other operating farms, Cooperative Extension, Bloustein and Nutritional Sciences, farm visits and field work, students will examine the history and philosophy of organic agriculture, as well as build a core understanding of local food systems.  Topics of nutrition and food justice will have a key role, and the course will provide students with the opportunity to engage community members through outreach and education with local non-profit partners such as Elijah’s Promise.

Through experience-based learning in the field, students will gain an understanding of organic food production and will improve their ability to work collaboratively with peers and community members.  Through lectures, readings and discussions, students will increase their agricultural literacy with particular attention to sustainability and local food systems, and will demonstrate an ability discuss the principles and practices of small-scale organic farming.

Please contact Arianna Lindberg at a.lindberg@rutgers.edu for more information.

 

Department of Landscape Architecture Design/Build Farm Studio, Spring 2016

In advance of its first growing season, the farm will be the site for a design/build studio course in the Department of Landscape Architecture during spring semester 2016 and will be comprised of junior and senior undergraduate and second year graduate students.

The studio aims to foster an understanding of how landscape architecture and agriculture can come together to form a partnership that seeks out opportunities for stewardship, sustainability, engaged learning, community and outreach.  As students actively participate in the establishment phase of a new organic student farm and plan for a future four-acre site, the studio will be a forum in which students gain a basic knowledge of the fundamentals of small-scale organic farming and deepen their agricultural literacy. 

The Farm Studio will research and explore opportunities for re-use and re-purposing of materials, green infrastructure, rain harvesting and composting systems.  In addition to this, students will investigate ways in which the farm and garden site can be programmed for a variety of users.  We will work collaboratively with the Office of Agriculture and Urban Programs (OAUP) and Rutgers Gardens to design and build various elements of the first phase of the Farm that will help to define the future of the space, both physically and programmatically.  The Studio will also explore design options for the long-term vision of the farm in conjunction with the master plan for Rutgers Gardens. 

A public presentation of student work is planned for April.

Please contact Arianna Lindberg at a.lindberg@rutgers.edu for more information.