January 12, 2011
Alumni, 2009 Public Policy Internship Program
My connection to the outdoors and to farming began with my upbringing in a rural, agricultural town in South Carolina. In college, I combined my passions for art and nature with a fine arts degree in Scientific Illustration from the University of Georgia. As a graphic artist and illustrator, my work aimed to raise awareness of biological conservation. I then returned to school where I received a master’s degree in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. My graduate research involved assessing the biodiversity of bird communities in non-crop areas in Wisconsin agroecosystems. This work helped me to better understand the environmental, economic, and human health impacts of agriculture.
I am now pursuing a career promoting more ecologically and socially sound farming practices, and see policy work as key to accomplishing this goal. The MFAI Public Policy Internship has been an incredible opportunity that has provided me with the tools to engage environmental and social justice initiatives through sustainable agriculture policy change. The internship has taught me about current policies, effective policy organizing and strategizing, and helped me network with organizations, agencies, and individuals contributing to the advancement of sustainable agriculture. I will be forever indebted to the MFAI policy team for an extremely rewarding and eye-opening experience, and look forward to staying connected in the future through our work.
I will continue with my current job as the Partner Shares Coordinator for the Madison Area Community Supported Agriculture Coalition (MACSAC). Partner Shares is an initiative that works to improve the nutrition of low-income communities by providing financial and educational assistance for purchasing CSA vegetable shares from local farms.
I also will work as a 2nd Year Intern at Troy Community Farm, an organic, urban CSA farm in Madison.