An Update from the Edible Campus Steering Committee

The Edible Campus Steering Committee, formed in September 2011, is charged with utilizing the expertise of campus and community stakeholders, to develop academic and community outreach opportunities and volunteer programming in support of edible gardening spaces that enhance the historical character of the IU Bloomington campus.

The committee, made up of 35 faculty, staff, and students and co-chaired by Campus View Childcare staff member, Amy Roche and Anthropology faculty member, Catherine Tucker, has decided to divide themselves into three sub-committees to adequately address their objectives this growing season: Food Production and Use, Academic Initiatives, and Volunteer Engagement.

The sub-committees intend to work with the entire university community to meet the following objectives:

Food Production

  • Create edible gardening spaces that focus on the sustainable cultivation of local and heirloom varieties of vegetables and herbs.
  • Promote dining options for students, staff, and faculty that utilize food produced on campus. 

Academic Initiatives

  • Create academic research, coursework, service learning, and community outreach opportunities at all edible gardening spaces.

Volunteer Engagement

  • Create a volunteer infrastructure capable of sustaining edible gardening spaces and engaging individuals in a non-curricular manner.
While the Steering Committee has only met four times since its inception, the dedicated members have already made significant progress towards their objectives.

The Academic Initiatives sub-comittee has compiled a list of food related courses offered this Spring and coming Fall and begun to develop a strategy for encouraging more departments to offer  food related courses.

The Volunteer Engagement sub-committee has been working on publicity and marketing strategies for garden events and workdays. The sub-committee has also been developing a plan for  creating an ‘adopt a day’ program at the Hilltop Garden and connecting gardening experts with new volunteers.

The Food Production and Use sub-committee has developed a planting plan and a garden layout for the Hilltop Garden, facilitated the testing of the garden’s soil and begun to build a connection between the garden initiative and on campus food vendors.

Stay tuned for more updates from the Edible Campus Steering Committee and its work to make IU more beautiful, edible, and sustainable!


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