Sharon Perrone ’11 – Dickinson Faculty Natural Farm



Meet Sharon! She graduated Dickinson with a double main in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and Italian Research in 2011. Sharon was first uncovered to the farm via her first-year seminar referred to as “Meals: Consuming, Rising, and Globalization” – her final selection – and was at first, dissatisfied. Nonetheless, a one-day journey to the farm remodeled her attitudes in direction of meals, the land, and sparked fervor within the class. Come Spring semester, Sharon started volunteering on the farm each week. Interned full-time over summer season 2008, and continued as a scholar farmer her Sophomore and Senior years.

Although she had deliberate to develop into a biomedical researcher following commencement, the decision to proceed within the discipline of agriculture was sturdy. She determined to comply with this calling, working as a analysis affiliate for a meals and agriculture legislation and coverage non-profit in Washington D.C. for 3 and a half years. After, she pursued a grasp’s diploma on the College of Minnesota – Twin Cities, finding out nitrogen fixation of legume cowl crops in horticultural techniques.

Sharon is now a PhD candidate on the identical college. She’s one month away from defending her dissertation (Good luck, Sharon!!!). Having mustered a love for soil, her work revolves closely round it, researching the methods agricultural practices have an effect on soil well being in Minnesota and searching for progressive methods to research soil well being. Upon her commencement, Sharon was awarded a Presidential Administration Fellowship. As a part of this two-year fellowship, she is going to be a part of the Dynamic Soil Properties Program (the topic of her dissertation work!!!) with the Pure Assets Conservation Service (NRCS) in Washington D.C. the place she may have the chance to do particular particulars and assignments. In the end, she hopes to proceed a lifelong profession of public service.


She recounts her experiences on the farm from a spot of affection and gratitude. For one, it instilled a lifelong love of meals, fiber manufacturing, and land administration which has develop into her devoted profession. She additionally credit her expertise on the farm for constructing a newfound love and appreciation for herself and her physique, and honor the wonderful work it may carry out. The farm additionally taught her the true worth of teamwork and collaboration and gave her mates that can final a lifetime.

Her favourite recollections on the farm, in her phrases – “Principally emotions. The solar on my pores and skin. The sound of the trains going by at 2pm. Figuring out the time by the solar. The annual cleansing of Kids’s Lake. Setting up the yurts and the excessive tunnels. Swimming within the Yellow Breeches in all my work garments. Potlucks. Printing farm t-shirts at 2am within the print store two weeks earlier than commencement as a substitute of engaged on my Italian thesis paper. The Native Meals Dinner, the place I lastly received to pour my coronary heart out to everybody my senior 12 months about how the farm modified my life. Portray the mural within the decrease barn. Portray the indicators for Harvest Fest. The dry, sticky feeling and odor of arms turned black after working within the tomatoes for five hours.  The perennial filth below my nails, and in between the cracks of my pores and skin in my arms and toes. Being rained on.  Lighting the burn pile. Watching the clouds roll throughout the hills. Seeding flats within the excessive tunnels listening to 97.3, The River, on the outdated Milwaukee radio. Planting garlic in smooth, freshly-tilled soil. Saying goodbye, and leaving a chunk of my coronary heart there, without end.”