Growing Ground School
How on earth should we live?
Ground School is a 10-week summer program for 18-27 year olds with an interest in environmental stewardship and sustainable agriculture. Our students seek an opportunity to explore their curiosities through hands-on learning, in a community of peers with the guidance of teachers and practitioners.
A Need For Connection and Inspiration
Young people are seeking hands-on, meaningful ways to connect the planet. Born into the climate crisis, they feel an urgent need to experience a positive relationship with the earth. On a practical level, young people, especially environmental studies students, are seeking summer programs that give them hands-on experiences and a better understanding of career opportunities. In our six years of operating our internship, Ground School has cultivated a curriculum that gives them an opportunity to fulfill their need for practical learning while also cultivating a sense of awe and reciprocity with the environment.
Gathering Ground has re-ignited my passion for the Earth. This internship was just what I needed at this point in my college career.
Poised for Growth
Investing in Student Housing
To continue providing students with a full-spectrum of learning opportunities and the support they need during their summer on Washington Island we have two main areas of need: facilities and staffing. In the past years, we’ve relied on community members to provide donated or discounted housing options. While we are deeply grateful for the generosity of our community members, we’ve outgrown these options.
We need to invest in long-term housing solutions. Working with the County and planning experts, we are planning a simple five-yurt community living space at Gathering Ground with a common kitchen and bathroom facility to bolster the community experience as well as connection to the Gathering Ground.
It raised my confidence in growing food an exceptional amount. It also just raised my confidence towards working in general… I now understand that I can do things that seem really hard, and have a great time doing it also!
Investing in Teaching Staff
In the past, we’ve relied on the generosity and passion of our teachers and practicitioners to support our students learning and hands-on experiences. To provide a more holistic and supportive experience to our students we need a staff person who is dedicated to the summer program.