Earn by Doing The fresh, earthy smell of a just-planted field is not something that can be emulated in a textbook.
It’s about working the field as the sun rises and getting dirt under your fingernails long before the first class of the day begins.
The College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences knows that the best way to teach students is to immerse them in hands-on learning.
Each of the college’s departments strive to provide students with Learn by Doing opportunities both in and out of the classroom. Student interns are able to take full advantage
of these opportunities by receiving both valuable hands-on
experience and additional income to support their academic studies: Earn by Doing. These interns have worked at
Cal Poly’s organic farm, greenhouses, orchards, Farm Shop, and Beef and Equine units, among many more.
One supporter of the college’s Earn by Doing program is
the California Cotton Alliance, a nonprofit foundation with a primary mission to provide funding for cotton research.
The alliance is also a proponent of supporting academic and scholarship initiatives throughout the state of California.
The Earn by Doing opportunities provided by the California
Cotton Alliance allow Cal Poly’s Horticulture and Crop Science Department to hire up to five student assistants to work directly in the fields each year.
“It is probably the greatest example of Learn by Doing on
campus — to grow a crop from a seed and follow it to the
market,” said Scott Steinmaus, head of the Horticulture and Crop Science Department. “There are not a lot of programs
that offer students the chance to be involved in full production. Here, they do it all, including crop management, irrigation, pest control, maintenance and diagnosis.”
These student positions are essential to the daily maintenance of
lands and agricultural operations across all of the college’s units. Donors who contribute to the Earn by Doing program further the shared mission of preparing leaders to contribute to the diverse needs of society while allowing students to finance their education. 04
“There are not a lot of programs that offer students the chance to be involved in full production. Here, they do it all, including crop management, irrigation, pest control, maintenance and diagnosis.” — Scott Steinmaus