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Art Trese, who helps run the student farm teaches a workshop on how to grow microgreens, Jan 29, 2024, Athens, Ohio. Provided by the Student Farmers Club

Farming club attracts agricultural students

Whether it's learning how to sustain microgreens or spending time helping out at the student farm, the Ohio University Student Farmers Club, which was started this semester, focuses on creating hands-on experiences for students interested in the environment. 

The Ohio Student Farm, located at 338 W. State St., features gardens and field plots all student-made. The farm has donated thousands of pounds of food and creates volunteer opportunities for students wanting to chip in.

The Farmers Club provides workshops for students to learn about different environmental and agricultural specialties with different members of the faculty. In addition, the club gives opportunities for students to work at the OU student farm and learn more about the process of growing crops. 

The club's purpose is not to provide weekly meetings in a classroom, but rather act as an experiential learning opportunity for students whose passions revolve around agriculture and farming. 

Kate Harmon, a senior studying environmental studies, serves as club president. She originally started the club as a way for students to be more involved with local farms. 


“The goal of the group is to connect students to the student farm and local agriculture,” she said. “So I wanted to create a group where we could get engaged in the community and all of the opportunities that Athens has to offer with local food, nonprofits, farmers markets and just build a base of volunteers for the student farm.” 

Some of the activities the club has participated in so far included how to grow microgreens, how to can beans and how to make jam. She hopes to be able to continue different workshops in the future and also find opportunities for students to volunteer around the community, such as at the local farmers market and on the student farm. 

She said the events have had a good turnout and that she hopes they will continue to in the future. 

“I hope that in future years exec will be able to do more events outside of OU and also just build a bigger base of students,” Harmon said.

Joey Haas, a junior studying plant biology, is the club's current treasurer. He originally helped found the club while taking sustainable agriculture last semester. He said as a part of the course, he was required to do volunteer work at the student farm. Harmon later told Haas that she wanted to make the club official so students could help out agriculturally around the community. 

Considering all the workshops the club has already done, he hopes to continue more soon and also spend time at the farm. 

“I’m hoping that we’ll be able to do more stuff actually at the farm once it starts to warm up and things like that,” he said. 

Laila Talley, a sophomore studying wildlife biology and conservation science, is the club’s secretary. She originally became involved in the club because she needed volunteer hours at the student farm for her scholarship and knew students who had worked at the farm and later sold the produce at the farmers market. 

She really hopes students will consider joining the club and that it will continue to flourish, despite the president graduating this year. 

“I really hope we continue and we also gain more student outreach,“ Talley said. “(I hope) we also get to do more fun workshops like we did before and also do some more community service and volunteering. I found that not many people actually know that we have a farm almost entirely run by students.”


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