Food and farming systems have a tremendous impact on our social, economic, environmental and spiritual well-being, and play a central role in climate change mitigation and adaptation actions. Given the large disparities in access to fresh, healthy, and culturally appropriate food, many opportunities exist to create meaningful work while addressing food justice, public health, and community well-being through the application of regenerative agriculture and sustainable entrepreneurship principles in the design and management of farms and community gardens. Creating successful models and solutions to these complex community problems is more certain when working in collaborative teams that put ideas in to practice. To develop team-based competencies in communication, project management, and organizational behavior and management, plus the business fundamentals needed to evolve community food systems, our program will integrate into the Changemaker Lab (CML) at Evergreen. The CML is an inter-disciplinary hands-on opportunity for students interested in learning how to start or develop sustainable non-profit and social purpose businesses and cooperatives. The CML facilitates learning about many business concepts and the development of strategic business plans around actual sustainable businesses, social enterprises and projects.
For more details on the Change Maker Lab, please read the Program Description for Change Maker Lab: Business Fundamentals.
Using the extensive Evergreen campus and organic farm as our design and practice laboratory, we will learn how to use a permaculture design process to identify campus community food system and farming education goals, analyze current and potential on-campus food production capacity, then design and start managing farm and community garden systems to meet community food and educational farming goals. Management goals will also address agroecology metrics including soil quality, nutrient cycling, seed saving, and reducing fossil fuel use; while sustainable business fundamentals of data analysis, statistics, accounting, market assessment and enterprise budgeting will be applied to create food production, added value, and distribution/marketing plans. Within our team, students will decide what they are most interested in and work in smaller project groups to take on specific aspects of our team goals, while sharing and connecting all projects within our team coaching sessions. Continuous emphasis will be placed on how this collaborative design and implementation process could be applied to any community setting. Successful completion of this 2-quarter (fall-winter) program will grant students the internationally recognized permaculture design certificate.
The Change Maker Lab is a large team-based collaboration across three catalog descriptions: Business Fundamentals, Farm/Garden, and Ocean Business/Science. Those registered for this Farm and Garden Design and Management program are expected to participate in farm-related projects. Students seeking intensive farm management experience can apply to continue this work in the allied Practice of Organic Farming program (spring-summer-fall). Those interested in Ocean Business/Science project work should register for the Ocean Business/Science program specifically. Those wishing to pursue businesses in any other market sector, or focus mainly on the business aspects of the Farm/Garden or Ocean Business/Science projects, should register for the Business Fundamentals program.
Course Reference Numbers
Student must meet with faculty to understand the learning environment.
Course Reference Numbers
leadership development, entrepreneurship, small business management, cooperative leadershipFood systems and sustainable agriculture, project design and management
$50 per quarter for lab fees