Collegiate Program Updates

Small things, great love

For 21 days, students in Merry Lea’s Master of Arts in Environmental Education learn about a subtropical ecosystem and then work with six elementary schools to get kids outside and connect them to their environment. Every year, I am amazed by how much they absorb.

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Sustainability students confront complexity

It’s been nearly two months since the seventh cohort of undergraduates completed Merry Lea’s Sustainability Leadership Semester (SLS). Between mid-August and mid-December, they shared classes, meals, field trips, hikes, social activities and a weeklong canoeing adventure.

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Immigration lawyer brings new lens to policy course

Laura Pontius, Albion, Ind., has found her legal career moving increasingly toward public education. This fall, her speaking gigs will include teaching Environmental Policy and Politics in Merry Lea’s Sustainability Leadership Semester (SLS).

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Olivia Downey, ‘22

Imagine you were kept in the same room 24 hours a day with nothing in particular to do except eat. Human beings would experience a rapid decline in both physical and mental health under these circumstances. Most farm animals live limited lives like this. 

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Stephen Lowe, ‘21

Stephen Lowe approaches agriculture with an appreciation for the complexity of the profession and an educator’s eye. 

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Cailin Smith, ‘21

What’s a molecular biology and biochemistry major doing in Merry Lea’s Agroecology Summer Intensive (ASI)? Cailin Smith, a rising junior from Knightstown, Ind., says she joined the group because a lot of biochemical research is agricultural.

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Heather Gabel, ’21

One of the gifts a liberal arts school like Goshen College offers its students is the freedom to explore and connect multiple disciplines. Heather Gabel, a rising junior from Orange City, Iowa, has taken full advantage of this opportunity.

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Lily Kauffman, ’21

Lily Kauffman, a rising junior from Mountain Lake, Minn., has a wide range of hands-on interests. The Agroecology Summer Intensive helped her think further about justice issues, her love of plants and a sustainability major.

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Georgia Ringle, ’20

Georgia’s goal is to become a sustainability consultant for large industrial agriculture operations. While sustainable practices are usually associated with small family farms, she sees ways that industrial agriculture can make choices that are healthier for people and the planet as well.

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Andros Island Clinches Career Direction

For some students, the prospect of a course in the Bahamas clinches the decision to attend Merry Lea’s Master of Arts in Environmental Education program. For Ali Sanders, the course also settled her career direction.

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