Just about 6 months ago, I was sitting at my dining room table, staring at a bunch of glossy college brochures, wondering exactly how I was going to make one of the biggest decisions of my life in just one month, given so many amazing choices. But, by the end of the month, my feelings had changed, and one college became the clear answer: I chose to attend Pomona College.
I bring this up because one of the primary reasons I chose to come to Pomona is the main subject of my blog post today: the Pomona College Organic Farm. The Farm definitely played a big role in my decision – how many colleges have a sustainable organic farm right on campus? But when I factored that in to my decision, I didn’t do so with the idea that I could ever work there – that seemed too much of a fantasy. I just assumed I’d get to volunteer and eat some fresh produce every now and again. But, as it turns out, about 1/2 a year later I’m lucky enough to be an employee at the Farm.
The Farm, in my humble opinion, is one of the most under-appreciated aspects of Pomona College. A lot of students (and faculty) will have been here for a couple years without having even been to the Farm. But once you pay a visit to the farm, I can nearly guarantee that you’ll be coming back. Something about the Farm is almost magical. It’s an easy way to escape from campus and the hectic college lifestyle without being so far removed from everything. The farm is open daily from 4-7 if you want to stop by and meet Adam, the farm manager, and get a tour from him, but it’s also open to be explored basically from dawn til dusk. You can come walk around, see the chickens (did I mention they produce fresh eggs?), pick a fresh zapote (a funny fruit that tastes like a cross between an apple and a pear) from the tree, and just enjoy the beauty of the farm. Or, you can come during volunteer hours (10 am-12 pm on Saturdays) if you want to see what it’s like to work on a Farm.
As a Farm employee, my duties pretty much include any farm-related task, including weeding, pruning, composting, preparing beds, etc. Pretty much anything you can think of. And during my 4-hour shift (if you ever want to come see me, I work from 2-6 on Thursdays) I love every minute of it. There’s something incredibly satisfying about getting your hands dirty and putting in a good few hours of mindless manual labor.
There are countless other reasons that I love the farm (did I mention that we’re in the process of building a greenhouse?!) but I won’t go into them here – there’s just too many. There are also other ways to be connected to the Farm besides working or volunteering, and you can check them out by (warning: shameless plug) liking the Farm’s Facebook page. The Farm is definitely one of my favorite places on campus, and yet another reason that I’m falling in love with Pomona College.
*All photos courtesy of Adam Long (Farm Manager) and the Facebook page