© 2018 Food Dignity

Minors in sustainable food systems

​When we were proposing the Food Dignity project in spring of 2010, only a small handful of US higher education institutions offered degree programs related to sustainable food systems, other than specifically within sustainable agriculture. Thus, at the time, proposing to develop new undergraduate minors in that arena at Cornell University (Cornell) and University of Wyoming (UW) seemed comparatively innovative. Both UW and Cornell successfully launched their minor programs during the Food Dignity project.

 

UW secured administrative approval for a new sustainability minor, which has a food system track option, in 2013. The food system track was shaped by UW and Feeding Laramie Valley partners in Food Dignity. The first eight UW students enrolled in the 2013-14 academic year. UW’s Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources, houses and advises the Sustainability Minor with track options.

 

Cornell launched a Community Food Systems undergraduate minor that enrolled their first students in 2017. Many faculty members at Cornell were involved in developing the minor, with community leaders associated with the Whole Community Project also deeply involved during the first phase and other community food system partners, including East New York Farms!, involved later.   

Over the same time period, dozens of other institutions have launched sustainable food system certificate, minor, and degree programs as well (e.g., University of New Hampshire has even formed a multi-disciplinary department).

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