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Chatham Richland campus to offer college credit program: 'Food, Farm and Field'

| Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 9:13 p.m.
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Sheila Applegate and Caitlin Lundquist, who took part in the canning and preservation class, work in the kitchen.
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Student prepared farm vegetables at Eden Hall kitchen.
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Pea shoot salad.

Chatham University wants to nourish young people's interest in food.

That's a goal of “Food, Farm and Field,” a two-week, college-level program set for July 7 through 20 on Chatham's Eden Hall campus in Richland.

High school juniors and seniors can sign up for the course. Tuition is $3,000 — or $2,250 for those who register by Friday — which covers chef-prepared meals, housing, instruction and three college credits.

Chatham scheduled the course as way of “reaching out to high school students to get them thinking about the food system and food issues,” said Kelsey Sheridan, coordinator of “Food, Farm and Field.”

Up to 20 students can enroll. Participants will stay in the rambling lodge on the Eden Hall campus.

“We've had people calling from as far as Florida. They're coming from all over the place,” Sheridan said.

Students will explore topics ranging from composting and soil analysis to vegetable canning and honey production, plus, the challenges of feeding people around the world.

“We will cover most aspects of how food comes to us from seed to plate,” said Beth Taylor, chief instructor for “Food, Farm and Field” and a Chatham University graduate student pursuing a master's degree in food studies.

“We will look at agriculture that incorporates sustainable practices,” Taylor said.

The garden's crops include garlic, carrots, beans, squash, oregano, tomatoes, kale and endive.

“The students will also explore food distribution ... and our local food system,” Taylor said. “Field trips include visits to farmer's markets, tours of local organic or sustainable farms, and interaction with local teens involved in the food world.”

Students also will make artful use of beeswax, and keep journals.

“Every day will be different,” said course coordinator Sheridan. “The program is incredibly interdisciplinary.”

High school students who enroll in the course can expect to participate in classes, outings and discussions from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

For more information on “Food, Farm and Field” call 412-365-2705, or visit the online site: www.chatham.edu/sse/programs/hsfff.

Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or ddeasy@tribweb.com.

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