As concerns grow about what to eat and where our food comes from, we need to be more informed about what our food choices are and how we can ensure the safety of our food.
This program will inform students about the political and economic considerations about our local and global food systems,as well as the scientific principles of the sustainable agricultural practice of growing food according to ecological principles and therefore protecting the environment while providing food, and how the diversity and stability of anagro ecosystem are superior to conventional agricultural systems.
Students will be ready for careers in sustainable farming, participation in setting agricultural policy, food system planning, food related enterprises and food science, as well as transfer to area four year colleges' agriculture programs.
Upon completion of this program the student will be able to:
A.A. in Arts and Science
Contact: Kate Maiolatesi, (413) 552-2462, firstname.lastname@example.org
This course is the first half of the college composition sequence and focuses on expository writing, critical thinking, and research, with emphases on the following: critical reading and interpretation of nonfiction texts; engaging with and analyzing texts; using summary, paraphrase, and quotation; finding, evaluating and documenting sources; and writing with purpose. Students will produce approximately 3000 words of formal written work, including a documented research paper of at least 1250 words. 4 class hours Prerequisite: Appropriate scores on English placement tests or C- or better in ENG 095 or C- or better in ENG 097 and ENG 098, or C- or better in ENG 096 or ENG 099.
This course is the second half of the first-year composition sequence and focuses on comprehending literary works, thinking critically, and writing analytically. The emphasis is on writing critically about fiction, poetry, and drama. Frequent short essays are assigned, amounting to a total of approximately 3000 words. Prerequisite: ENG 101 with a grade of C- or better
Introduction to the study and principles of behavior. Topics include general principles of scientific investigation; physiological bases of behavior including sensation, perception, learning, emotion, and motivation; development; individual differences; attitudes; and group dynamics. Prerequisite: Eligibility for ENG 101.
This is a survey of the emerging field of ecopsychology, an integration of ecology and psychology. By drawing upon the science of ecology to re-examine the human psyche as an integral part of nature, ecopsychology attempts to inspire lifestyles that are both ecologically sustainable and psychologically healthy. This course provides an overview of the psychological principles and practices relevant to environmental education and action, while exploring the contributions of ecological thinking and values of the natural world to psychotherapy and personal growth. Prerequisite: PSY 110
A college-level course including more advanced topics in algebra, functions, graphs, and problem solving. Prerequisite: MTH 082 or MTH 095 or MTH 097 or MTH 099 with a grade of C- or better or SM18, or adequate score on the Mathematics Placement Examination
Graphical description of data, measures of central tendency and variability, probability and probability distributions, central limit theorem, estimation of parameters, testing hypotheses, regression and correlation, analysis of variance, and other topics in statistical inference. Prerequisite: MTH 097, MTH 082 or MTH 095 or MTH 099 with a grade of C- or better or SM18, or adequate score on the Mathematics Placement Examination
Environmental history examines how humans and nature have interacted through time and with what results. The natural environment (water, land, climate, geological changes, disease, plant and animal ecology, etc.) and human factors (population, capitalism, technology, social relations, cultural attitudes, etc.) from an interrelated system. However, the environmental history of a period and place is a matter of interpretation, and this course actively explores the many facets of this new field of study. As an introduction to interpreting America's environmental past, students will explore such themes as Native American ecology, hunting, the impact of agriculture, mining, industrialization, as well as the emergence of ecology and the modern environmental movement. Prerequisite: Eligibility for English 101
Today and throughout history, some of the greatest works of literature, culture, politics, and spirituality have been rooted in the earth (to use an earthly metaphor). This class will explore various forms of literature to seek a deeper appreciation of how the world's most engaging thinkers human and non-human have embraced the beauty of the world around us and pondered the awe-inspiring power of our environment. Prerequisite: ENG 102
The choices we make in our every day eating habits, whether we choose to eat fast food, or healthy meals, has an impact on the sustainability of our environment. Choosing to eat locally grown, organic produce can help to preserve our soil, water and biodiveristy resources while reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. This course will examine the history of agriculture, how contemporary food culture is defined, and current agricultural practices, including the use of fertilizers and pesticides. Scientific analysis of soil and water will be included. Students will explore a variety of farming practices while working in community-based field labs at a local farm and at the HCC organic garden.
This course will cover the fundamentals of system- level ecological interactions, such as populationecology and stability, as applied to sustainable agricultural systems. In addition, we will explore ways to make the transition to a more sustainable lifestyle through participation in a local food system. Topics covered will include GMO's, species interactions in agricultural systems and landscape diversity. The laboratory will include composting, worm castings, green manures and cover crops.
This course is an introduction to the study of the different approaches to how one should treat the natural environment. Beginning with a historical overview of various indigenous technical and cultural knowledges, and then progressing to assess literature on environmental concerns, the course will proceed to interrogate such philosophical concepts as ecology, alienation, web of relations, dominant hierarchies, stewardship, survival, among others. Finally, more recent developments in contemporary philosophy such as ecofeminism, naturalist ethics, and ecological postmodernism will be explored.
Conventional (neoclassical) economics assumes that the economy can continue to grow forever, that well-being is determined only by market goods, and that people always act selfishly. Ecological economics in contrast, starts from the understanding that the economy is a sub-system of the global environment, and subject to its bio-physical limits. In addition, human well-being is determined by many other factors besides market goods: friendship, love, status, rights, freedom, etc. and that human behavior is far more complex than simple self-interest.The primary insight of ecological economics is that the human economy is part of the global environmental system. Ecological economics situates human activity within the environment, and the study of the natural environment includes human interests and activities. Ecological economics is a systems approach with a global perspective on human resource use, economic development, and the environment. Ecological economics is concerned not only, like other economists, with efficiency and equity, but also with environmental and social sustainability.This course provides a historical overview of various schools of economic thought, presents the major principles required to fuse ecology with economics, and helps students to analyze economic policies under the lens of ecological reality. Particular attention is paid to economic growth theory and policy as it pertains to the sustainability of human society and management of natural resources. This is a transdisciplinary course, incorporating relevant principles and practices from political science, economics, psychology, philosophy, the natural sciences and physics.Prerequisite: Any ECN course with a passing grade of C- or eligibility for MTH 095, or by permission of instructor.
This course is an overview of the major principles and techniques required for the detailed investigation and documentation of soil conditions. Consideration is given to the physical and chemical properties of soil development. Topics to be covered include soil forming factors, soil profile genesis, layer and horizon nomenclature, soil texture and the applications of soil science to scientific studies. Lecture and field/laboratory exercises are designed to introduce the student to the qualitative and quantitative methods of the soil assessment process. A major component of this course will be a student project that emphasizes field investigation integrated with internet research.
We are faced with many critical problems in the 21st century-species extinction, diminishing energy resources, increasing population, and human civilizations' limited vision of alternatives. Whether humans can learn to manage their life styles in a sustainable manner will impact the long-term survival of all the species on this planet. Students will explore relevant environmental issues, their possible solutions, and the interconnectedness of all lives on Earth. Issues such as energy use, sustaining resource levels, preservation of biodiversity, and community sustainability will be discussed from a scientific perspective. Seminars, laboratory experiments, community-based learning and field trips are all integral components of the course.
Clean energy is becoming a priority as our global community faces the challenge of climate change. At the same time agriculture is changing to meet the needs of a more environmentally aware consuming public. In this intercollegiate and collaborative course students will learn how to apply clean energy technologies to sustainable agriculture practices. This class brings together students at Holyoke Community College, Hampshire College, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst to learn a variety of emerging technologies. Topics will include solar, wind, and geothermal technologies, ecological farming, greenhouse management, rainwater collections, root zone heating and considerations of social justice. This course is intended for second year students.Prerequisite: Permission of instructor is required. Field trips will involve physical activity and appropriate dress.
An intensive course designed to prepare students for professional studies in the culinary arts. Focus will be on understanding characteristics of the ingredients used in food preparation as well as developing an appreciation of food as a sensory, cultural, and esthetic experience.Prerequisite: Eligibility for MTH 085 and ENG 095 Prerequisite or Corequisite: CUL 115 Additional Course Fee: $425.00 Uniforms and Tools (The fee is subject to change.)
The exploration of environmental geology, an applied science, will include the fundamentals of geologic processes and the Earth's natural resources, with an emphasis on the human interaction within the geologic environment. Lecture topics included in this course: general overview of rocks and minerals, geologic hazards (e.g., earthquakes, volcanoes, mass wasting, flooding), soil formation and documentation, geological landscapes (e.g., glacial deposits, lava flows, and floodplains), groundwater, waste management, land-use planning and current events in geology. Laboratory exercises, which are intended to reinforce the lecture topics, will include: field visits to local geologic points of interest, computer simulations, and hands-on investigations.
This course is designed to explore contemporary topics in environmental studies. Social, cultural, and scientific issues as related to the environment will be examined. Example subject matter covered in the course may include: endangered species, biodiversity, environmental health, environmental law, forest and wild life management, conservation biology, global environmental change, ecosystem restoration, renewable energy, and green business.
An introduction to the science of nutrition as it applies to everyday life. Students will learn how to apply the logic of science to their own nutritional concerns. Topics include the six major nutrients: carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and water. The course also will examine energy balance, weight control, the digestive process, nutrition fads, supplements, fiber, and disease as it relates to nutrition and fitness. A dietary computer application is used throughout the semester to track personal dietary, energy, and fitness. Prerequisite: Eligibility for ENG 101.
This course will explore in depth a current and/or historical topic in environmental sustainability. The focus of the course will vary and will include topics in agriculture, energy, and green building among others. This topics course will possibly explore concepts such as permaculture and the differences between genetically modified, hybrid and heirloom varieties of plants, including experiments with growth patterns, variability, yield and taste. Field studies may be conducted in the HCC organic garden. Research on topics of interest may include primary source materials. Prerequisite: None
Recent emphasis on making buildings "greener" has led to considerable confusion. Just what is meant by the term? This class will explore that multi-level problem and take a hands-on approach to implementing tested strategies for designing and building structures that are highly energy efficient, environmentally friendly, healthy, and durable. The course will cover the connections between occupant health and the choice of structural and finish materials, the careful control of air exchange and thermal transfer, the use of renewable energy sources, and industry standards for system efficiencies.
This course provides an overview of renewable energy resources including solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, tidal, wave, hydropower, and hydrogen. Students will learn basic principles of each technology and its application for both new and existing buildings, and for transportation. Students will investigate the potential of each technology to help solve current and future energy demands the society faces. Topics covered will include governmental regulations, analysis of renewable energy systems, calculation of savings, and financing options available.
This course provides a comprehensive training in the application of solar thermal technology. Students will gain an understanding of the solar energy resource and its adaptive application in a variety of strategies including passive solar and active solar thermal. In addition, students will practice designing systems on site for a given location and explore the potential of a solar-based economy. The laboratory will train students to conduct solar energy site assessments, install solar thermal systems and promote the use of solar energy in residential, commercial and municipal facilities.
This course provides a comprehensive training in the application of solar technology. Students will gain an understanding of the solar energy resource and its adaptive application in the use of photovoltaics. In addition, students will practice designing systems on site for a given location and explore the potential of a solar-based economy. The laboratory will train students to conduct solar energy site assessments, install solar photovoltaic systems and promote the use of solar energy in residential, commercial and municipal facilities.
This supervised field training program will further the hands-on skills students have acquired in previous Sustainable Agriculture courses. Students will work with an appropriate agricultural industry partner to gain field experience in sustainable farming practices. Students will be expected to work 225 hours in this internship. Prerequisites: SUS 116, SUS 216 and SUS 220
This program qualifies for MassTransfer, which guarantees credit transfer to Massachusetts state colleges and universities. MassTransfer also will grant students automatic acceptance to certain state colleges and universities by achieving the minimum grade point average and the HCC degree.