by Sarah Bowers
Two years ago, I was preparing for my senior year at Lander University. I always felt that I would have time to decide what my next steps would be after school, but that fourth and final year of my college career snuck up on me - and I did not feel like I was prepared to graduate. Many students around me talked about what paths they were taking and the jobs they had in place once they had their degree in hand, future employers just waiting for their arrival. Many of my peers were ready to move on, but I did not feel the same. What did I want to do with my degree? Where did I want to go? I wasn’t sure and I felt pressured. So I decided to take some time to re-evaluate what I was doing and to figure out exactly what I wanted to do once I graduated. That’s when I applied to be the Farm and Kitchen Intern here at Gravatt.
As the Farm and Kitchen Intern, I have a lot of different jobs. My main duties are to help plan, plant, and tend to our acre farm, help coordinate kitchen menus around our fresh produce, and preserve what we cannot immediately use. What I like most about this internship though, is that every day is completely different. My time here at Gravatt has taught me so many fun and valuable skills: I have learned how to drive and maintain a tractor, how use a chainsaw (safely!), how to plant and maintain a garden, how to manage a kitchen staff, about different wildlife and native species, how to be a responsible steward of the land and the environment around me, how to take care of honey bees, how to best utilize a greenhouse, new cooking techniques and recipes, how to raise baby goats and chicks, how to think creatively when having to solve different problems that come up day to day - even how to change the brake pads on my car! I really could go on and on. But the most valuable thing I have learned in my time here is how to be confident in myself and my ideas. I have a wonderful supervisor (Thomas) who is super knowledgeable, extremely supportive, and fun as all get out. I can tell that he really wants me to succeed and make the most of my time here. My favorite part of this experience has been being with the people around me. Everyone here has something different to offer and I have learned so much from each of them. I also have really loved living with the other interns - it is like getting to live with four of your best friends.
I have been the Farm and Kitchen Intern at Gravatt for two years and I have loved nearly every minute of it. I feel incredibly lucky to have been able to spend this time here and I feel like I have a fresh perspective on life after school. I now know my strengths, what I am capable of, and I feel ready to go back to school. It’ so nice to work with people who are dedicated and absolutely love what they do. I really would recommend this internship to anyone - who wouldn’t love to live on such a beautiful piece of property with some of the best people I’ve ever known?
Each year, Gravatt hires 9-month interns and summer interns. To learn more, click here.