Meet Lizzie Grabowski ‘17, an education and outreach extraordinaire! Lizzie first volunteered on the farm during Weed n’ Feed her freshman year. She then joined the farm crew as a student farmer her junior year thanks to former second year apprentice Cindy Baur who convinced her to apply. After graduating in 2017, Lizzie was the Education and Outreach Coordinator for the farm, planning farm events and coordinating the farm’s two education programs: Sustainable Earth Education (SEED) and Farm, Cook, Eat. She says that most of her formative experiences happened on the farm or with the farm crew and she wholly credits the farm with helping her grow into the person she is today.
After leaving the farm, Lizzie cycled through a few seasonal educator positions on farms up and down the East Coast. She landed in Boston last winter with the rest of the Dickinson College Farm exodus and worked as an educator on a farm and reservation on the South Shore managed by the Trustees of Reservations. Lizzie sees teaching as a multifaceted discipline and enjoyed teaching kids and adults about the ecology of the northeast but saw bigger opportunities to teach major stakeholders best practices and the impact of their decisions on the environment, their employees, and their consumers. Looking to achieve this career goal of assisting institutions of higher education with setting and meeting sustainability goals, Lizzie started working at Johns Hopkins University this past November as their Sustainability Leadership Council (SLC) Coordinator for their Office of Sustainability. The SLC unites faculty, staff, and students across the multiple JHU campuses to “provide a forum for discussion of environmental sustainability, planetary health, and climate and sustainability goals.” The charge of the SLC is to turn these collaborations into recommendations and actions–from policy to programs in everything from building and construction standards to research initiatives to student engagement. Lizzie’s role is to be the oil for this machine. In a given day, she might curate content for our SLC web presence, attend a Baltimore City Sustainability Commission Meeting, and facilitate discussion between architects and academics around the topic of “High Performing” and “Healthy” buildings. Lizzie says that the best part about her job is, without hesitation, the countless opportunities to learn. Lizzie also began a master’s program in Environmental Science and Policy this year through Johns Hopkins University.