Bring Pierce back to its roots

Bring Pierce back to its roots

Founded originally with the intent to focus on crop cultivation and animal husbandry, Pierce College, which was then known as the Clarence W. Pierce School of Agriculture, opened in September 1947. 

The campus sits on 426 acres with 226 acres dedicated specifically to farming and agriculture. Yet for some reason, there is no sustainable community garden on campus. 

Why is that? 

Pierce has an ideal location, and this is the great opportunity to incorporate hands-on learning, strengthen community bonds and provide fresh and organic food options to not only students and staff on a daily basis, but to the outside community as well. 

It would also be an excellent way to showcase the campus and highlight all the hard work of agricultural students.  

According to the Pierce College website, agriculture is still California’s number one industry. 

“With 88,000 farms and ranches, California agriculture is nearly a $36.6 billion dollar industry that generates $100 billion in related economic activity,” according to the website. 

According to Pierce College’s Agriculture Department, they are still achieving all three of the school’s original goals for the program:

  1.     Educate future farmers and ranchers, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, florists, equestrians, horticulturists and others involved with our vast industry.
  2.     Educate “city folk” on where their food and fiber come from.
  3.     Prepare students to transfer to a four-year institution or graduate school.

 According to a Los Angeles Times article from 2014, the college once leased land to a Farm Center that employed more than 200 Pierce students a year and provided the agricultural program on campus with feed and other materials through this partnership. 

 Pierce could start this again. They could create a Farmer’s Market and sell produce grown on its land, by its students, and host special events such as the Harvest Festival throughout the year to continue to bring awareness to the campus. 

 The college has the opportunity to create jobs, build community and help feed Angelenos. 

 Now is the time to rebuild this program into something that would make the founders of this college proud.