By: Meghan Seery
For the summer before my senior year I wanted to do something that was unlike anything I had ever done before during my summers. I wanted to be away from a desk (whether in the classroom or at a job) and wanted to try find something where I could be outdoors and moving around. I also wanted to do something that was unique to Furman. With graduation quickly approaching I decided to participate in a summer May Experience course and to apply for a sustainability fellowship at the Furman Farm, both of which are opportunities that are unique to Furman.
Being a Health Science major and having knowledge in many areas such as nutrition and community and environmental health I thought that working on the Furman Farm would be a great way to get outdoors and to incorporate what I had learned in the classroom into my work. In my classes you learn about the impact of eating healthy, being physically active, and about sustainable and natural growing methods. Now, being a sustainability fellow for the Furman Farm I am able to experience the hard work that goes into the production of these nutritious foods that we are always discussing.
I came into the Furman Farm having no gardening background so every day I am learning something new about different techniques and practices. I have had the opportunity to harvest, compost, leaf compost, weed, compost tea, plant, and do multiple other things while learning the best methods of doing so. There so many little facts that I have learned such as the importance of planting onions with crops to keep insects away and why certain plants may need more compost then others. Working on the Furman Farm has made me appreciate how much time and effort goes into the production of produce, especially produce that is grown with sustainable, natural, and organic practices in mind. My favorite part of my fellowship is working at the Saturday farmers markets because you get to see all of your hard work from the week pay off and then you get to turn around and do it all again for the next week. It is so refreshing to see all of the people coming to the markets making healthy choices and buying locally grown produce.