Hi everyone! My name is Christine Dawson-Haines, I am currently a rising senior (wow first time saying…well typing that haha) studying Community, Environment, and Development. I was born and raised in the city of Philadelphia, PA and had only gone hiking once in my life. After exploring the landscapes of Centre County, I realized my passion for the natural world and began to develop this passion. After changing my major from Engineering to CED I began searching for internships that would allow me to expand my knowledge of the world around me while connecting with others along the way.
This will be my first and last time working with the Student Farm as a student intern. I hope to absorb all the knowledge I can about the basics of running a sustainable farm. With this information I can apply it back home, by implementing my own small garden and expanding throughout my community. In Philly, there are not many fresh produce markets that serve our communities, instead corner stores and fast-food restaurants line the streets poisoning our communities. I believe that if the people of my community had the opportunity to purchase and consume fresh produce they would. By creating small gardens in urban communities, this will empower people because they do not have the opportunity to live healthier lifestyles.
In my eyes community is the backbone to growth and progress. When people come together to achieve a goal or overcome a battle, working side by side with your community always makes challenges seem a little less tough. During my time with the farm I hope I am able to build relationships with my peers and combat any challenges that may come our way. With each other to count on I anticipate our impact to go beyond Penn State, and continue to impact the surrounding communities as well.
Although I am fairly new to farming, I hope that with the right leadership I can become a leader in my own community. As a leader, you face many situations that require many skills. An important skill to have as a leader is the ability to stay calm no matter what the issue is. When you are calm you have the power to make smart and practical decisions, while keeping everyone else on your team calm as well. Staying calm through difficult times is a skill that is learned through patience and dedication (two other important skills a leader should embody).