Pam McLeod - Staff

February 16, 2022

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How did you become interested in agriculture and sustainable food systems?

Although I was originally planning to go into academia, I began working as a student advisor and realized that my
passion was to work with people to “help them chart their own course.” Coupled with my love of food and farming,
the coordinator position seemed perfect for me.

What brought you to the Center for Agroecology?

“I’ve been interested in farming, food systems, and food justice for a number of years,” she says. Working at farmer’s markets during grad school prompted her interest. Subsequently, she attended Bi-Rite Farm School in Sonoma, pitched in on a friend’s farm near Pescadero, and became a UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardener. The coordinator position checks a lot of boxes for her: farming, education, outreach work, and an emphasis on food equity, access, and justice. “All of those things coming together in a single position seemed perfect!” she says.

Can you tell us a bit about your role at the Center?

In my new role, I facilitate the center’s Apprenticeship Program, which trains “seasoned beginners” in an immersive course that combines hands-on experience in the field with classroom instruction, community building, and mentored learning opportunities. I will work on logistics, curriculum, and other elements that I hope will create a “fulfilling, rich, educational experience” for the participants. The new Apprenticeship Program launches June 13 with a 10-week program that runs until August 19. The second session runs from September 12 to November 18. I will also facilitate the center’s Short Courses, which are part of the newly redesigned structure of the center. Short Courses offer multi-day intensive training in areas such as growing organic citrus, taught by Center for Agroecology staff and other experts.

 

What do you enjoy about your work? 

I am really excited for the energy the onsite apprentices will bring. I am thrilled to help bring the Apprenticeship Program back at the center.