Fall 2012 Course: The Pleasure, Politics and Production of Food

Jenn Halpin and Matt Steiman will co-teach “The Pleasure, Politics and Production of Food”, a 300-level course in the Environmental Studies Department at Dickinson College.

Course description:

The “Pleasures, Politics and Production of Food” aims to provide students with a full-spectrum experience in what it means to be a farmer in the 21st century. Matthew SteimanStudents will explore theories and practices of sustainable food production plus learn about issues facing farmers and consumers, from field to farmers’ market. Woven into the course will be hands-on learning opportunities in food preparation and preservation, providing a well-rounded immersion into food, from “seed to plate”. Students can expect to spend time learning on campus, in the fields at the College Farm and other local venues.


A painting student with her canvas at Dickinson Farm.The College Farm supports students from all disciplines in their pursuit to incorporate its resources into their academic interests. From art majors to biology majors, the farm has worked with students and faculty to develop relevant research topics that address sustainability, from food production to public art.

Faculty use the farm as a venue for research, labs, class visits and as a resource for course development. Students make use of the farm for internships and independent research projects.

Students and faculty have utilized the land and resources of the farm for course projects such as art installations, documenting the interactions between farm wildlife and farm ecology, the effects of vermicompost extracts on plant health plus stream health data collection, integrated pest Flock of Geese at Dickinson Farm. Photo courtesy of Melinda Schlitt.management strategies and developing educational curricula for K-12 visitors.

Academic Internships 

Farm-based internships are a great way to gain first-hand experience in an area of interest! The College Farm regularly supports students interested in discovering a unique aspect of the farm and food systems; from diversifying the livestock operation to developing an educational curriculum that is farm-based.

The farm staff is dedicated to empowering students through meaningful work that can both enhance the farm program and provide students with skills that can be applied in the classroom or later in life. Students interested in pursuing academically-focused projects at the farm are encouraged to contact the College Farm, in addition to recruiting the appropriate faculty to support their project.

Faculty and Courses

List of Fall 2012 Sustainability Courses – Dickinson College Center for Sustainability Education

The farm continues to collaborate with and support faculty from all departments in their courses, labs and research. While course offerings may change from semester to semester, a growing number of Dickinson College faculty have developed ways to integrate issues relating to food sustainability and the farm into their courses:

Professor Tom Arnold, Biology

Professor Scott Boback, Biology

Professor Tony Pires, Biology

Professor Gene Wingert, Biology

Professor John Henson, Biology

Professor Karen Weinstein, Anthropology

Professor Nicky Tynan, Economics

Professor Siobhan Phillips, English

Professor Emily Pawley, History

Professor Helen Takacs, International Business & Management

Professor Michael Fratantouno, International Business & Management

Professor Todd Arsenault, Art

Professor Anthony Cervino, Sculpture

Professor Anthony Wolking, Ceramics

Professor Mike Beevers, Environmental Science

Professor Greg Howard, Environmental Studies

Professor Jeff Niemitz, Geology

Professor Ben Edwards, Geology

Professor Tim Wahls, Computer Science

An art installation at Dickinson Farm: Chair with a view of the Lower Barn.