In with the Interns: A Full First Two Weeks

by fairchildchallengeatphipps

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In with the Interns is our new segment featuring the 2013 high school interns; this segment will explore what they do, learn and experience this summer. Written by Kate Borger, this segment will also feature original words and artwork from the interns.

If you ever feel worried about the fate of the world, take heart. The Phipps high school interns, given their capacity for hard work, open-mindedness and true concern for others and for the environment, are living, teenage examples of hope for the future. As they enthusiastically learn about plant science and sustainable solutions to the daunting environmental issues we face, we can breathe a sigh of relief, knowing there are youth like them to help take on these problems with commitment and intelligence.

Since their first day in the job on June 24th, these eight high school students have been working with Phipps horticulture staff to help beautify the Conservatory. In addition, they planned and planted their own vegetable beds, learned cooking techniques with members of Slow Food Pittsburgh, and studied basic botany with Pitt biology post-doc, Alison Hale.

This second week was focused on food systems and how our food choices affect our bodies and the environment.  The documentary film, Food Inc. and Michael Pollan’s book, Food Rules, spurred on thoughtful and lively discussions in which we were joined by Chatham food studies student, Hanna Mosca (who is also our department’s amazing intern).  Additionally, we were all inspired by a visit to a local urban vegetable garden, created and maintained by Pitt students in Oakland. The bottom line: individuals have the power to make choices daily that can improve our relationship with the environment. Talk about inspiring!

Photo by Kiehl Jackson.

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