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History of the Program

Spring 2010 | Fall 2010 | Fall 2011Spring 2012Spring 2013 | Summer 2013 | Spring 2014 | Fall 2014 | Spring 2015 | Summer 2015

Spring 2010

  • Principal construction begins on the Urban Garden at the Political Science Department in March and is completed at the end of May. 
  • The first planting is exclusively Heirloom tomatos sourced from Legare Family Farms, but due to a lack of local pollinators, fails to fruit. This is followed with a diverse planting of fast-growing, high-yield herbs and plants, including: various types of basil, lemongrass, carrots, thyme, rosemary, and flowering plants to attract pollinating insects and repel pests. 

Fall 2010

  • Under consultation from Dr. Tracy Burkett of the Sociology and Anthropology Department, the members of CofC Urban Agriculture begin experimenting with implementing a permaculture system in the garden. 

Fall 2011

  • Collaboration begins with Elizabeth Beak of CropUp to develop a plan for rejuvenating the garden, during which it is learned that the garden soil is among the most fertile on the Charleston peninsula, thanks to the early incorporation of vermiculture techniques. 

Spring 2012

  • CofC Urban Agriculture is absorbed into the newly formed Green CofC club, along with the responsibility of maintaining the garden. 

Spring 2013

  • The Urban Agriculture student club comes to an end, leaving the Political Science Urban Garden without any caretakers. The now neglected garden soon becomes overgrown with weeds and infested with pests, entering a dilapidated state.
  • Seeing that the garden can be improved, Ashlyn Hochschild, a graduate assistant with the Office, acquires permission from the Political Science department to have the Office of Sustainability become its caretaker. 
  • This is the official start of the Urban Garden Apprenticeship program.

Summer 2013

  • The first rendition of the new program begins and is headed by former Office Intern, and political science major, Lexa Keane. 
  • During this time the program focuses on Native American agricultural practices, such as: lunar gardening, companion planting, and fertility and restoritive based farming. 

Spring 2014

  • The Garden Apprenticeship program officially starts, featuring a class of four interns.
  • The program begins as a means of compensating for the lack of agricultural courses at the College of Charleston. Students now officially had a means by which they could get out of the classroom and learn applicable life skills. 

Fall 2014

  • Lexa graduates from the College of Charleston and is hired by the College's Grounds Department in a position where she can apply the skills she learned as the Garden Coordinator and head of the Garden Apprenticeship Program.
  • Kelsey Sears, a biology major at the College, takes up the position as head of the program.

Spring 2015

  • Kelsea Sears' tenure as Garden Coordinator comes to an end after she graduates from the College of Charleston. 
  • Katie Kerbel, an arts management major, takes up the position in her place.
  • At this point the Garden Apprentice program has expanded to include twenty apprentices. 

Summer 2015

  • The Garden Apprenticeship program is officially rebranded as the Urban Garden Apprenticeship program. 
  • The newly renamed program features a class of five apprentices. 
  • The focus of the program becomes centered on education about different gardening practices as well as on facillitating interactions with community parners.