News from the Farm, October 17th, 2011
Seeding the Future Conference, October 14th-15th at Dickinson College
Co-sponsored by the Farm and Center for Sustainability Education
A collective sigh of relief echoes throughout the farm today. We did it! Our dedicated group effort succeeded in hosting and executing “the-first-of-its-kind” College Farm conference this weekend! Seeding the Future was a smashing success; from the break in the weather on Friday to the amazing keynote address by Tony Geraci on Saturday afternoon! Nearly 240 conference participants showed up for our two-day conference, from over 60 colleges and universities. Over half of the attendees were students.
Sustainable agriculture gurus from North Carolina and Vermont to Montana and New Hampshire supplied conference attendees with invaluable information, insight and guidance. The networking, connections and exchanges made throughout the conference have us bubbling over with ideas that we hope to experiment with here on our farm. I suspect others took as much or more away from the experience.
It goes without saying that pulling off this conference required lots of help from many, many people. Thank you to every administrator, staff member and volunteer at Dickinson who contributed to the organization and execution of this important event: your efforts and support were indispensable to its success!
Our conference was a very first collaborative effort between the Farm and the Center for Sustainability Education. Students and interns played a significant role in our conference. On Friday afternoon, conference attendees spent their time at the College Farm engaged in hands-on learning workshops that were led by our student farm team. Topics like biodiversity, composting, livestock and worms were covered by our fabulous crew. The leadership skills of our team continued to shine throughout the conference, resulting in impressive feedback from those in attendance.
As we bid farewell to the last of the conference attendees on Sunday morning it almost seemed like a dream that over 200 people were with us over the weekend! Almost no evidence of their physical presence could be found. What we are left with, though, is a renewed vigor for endless possibilities to improve our program, production goals and interaction with our community. With the end of the farming season not too far off, we have the winter ahead of us to sketch out 2012 and how we might implement some of what others are doing here on the Dickinson College Farm. Stay tuned…