University of Vermont

Horticulture Research and Education Center

Catamount Educational Farm

Catamount Educational Farm, or Cat Farm, is embedded within the Hort Farm. The mission of Cat Farm is to model sustainable farming practices through a working vegetable and fruit farm that provides educational and research opportunities for the UVM community. Students are integral in carrying out all activities of the farm, and this experiential learning environment provides them with real and diverse sustainable farm management skills. The farm also contributes to the local food system of the university by marketing the student-grown produce back to the UVM community through a campus farm stand, CSA shares, and wholesale accounts with University Dining Services.

The Catamount Farm initiative was launched in 2014 to facilitate improved teaching, research, and outreach activities in specialty crops through establishment of a model educational farm. All edible produce on the farm is produced under Catamount Educational Farm direction to provide for long-term soil fertility, crop planning, and integration with teaching and research activities. Produce grown on the farm is sold to the UVM community to fund the program, through: summer and fall community-supported agriculture (CSA) shares delivered to campus and picked up on-farm; weekly farm stands on campus (Tuesdays) and at the farm (Fridays); and institutional sales to UVM’s Sodexo food service. Students in associated programs provide the majority of farm labor in an experiential learning setting.

Educational Programs

Farmer Training Program

The Farmer Training Program is a 6-month, full-time intensive program for aspiring farmers and food systems advocates that provides a hands-on, skill-based education in sustainable agriculture. Established in 2011, this full-time program offers participants the unique opportunity to manage their own growing site, take classes from professors and expert farmers, and rotate as workers and learners on successful, diverse farms in the Burlington area.

Catamount Farm Summer Experience

This suite of integrated undergraduate PSS courses include study on: sustainable, diversified vegetable production; orchard and vineyard management; and compost ecology and management. In 2016, coursework will include the sustainable vegetable farm practicum; advanced agroecology; soil fertility; and compost ecology and management.

Last modified January 31 2017 11:53 AM