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Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship 2017 Students

Brandon Brones

Brandon Brones
Community Area: Avondale

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to WCH to develop a skill set that would allow me to be self-sufficient and provide me the opportunity to benefit my family and community through healthy and sustainable living.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to positively affect my community and provide food and skills to those who lack that access.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Legends Farm

Ariel Cantrell

Ariel Cantrell
Community Area: South Shore

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
 To start my own farming business

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
Work in the food industry

Internship Placement: McCormick Place Rooftop

Giulianna Ciocca

Giulianna Ciocca
Community Area: Brighton Park

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the Windy City Harvest Program because I believe that sustainable urban agriculture is a way to address food and environmental justice. This program is an amazing opportunity to learn about sustainable food production in an urban environment.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to have a career that positively affects my community.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Arturo Velasquez Institute Farm

Sharon Clemons

Sharon Clemons
Community Area: Hyde Park

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship program to empower myself with knowledge and skills in sustainable urban agriculture and to grow food to feed communities and myself.  I have a real concern about food standards and processes needed to create high quality fruit and vegetables. Food is the core of health and wellness.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I will continue expanding my knowledge and skills in urban farming.  I hope to start working in the agriculture field in a growing and production environment where I am growing sustainable produce.

Internship Placement: Gary Comer Youth Center Farm

Natasha Coleman

Natasha Coleman
Community Area: Washington Park

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I was in the youth program and the grower at Washington Park encouraged me to join.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
To start my own business, become an edible landscape architect, and become a part of the Windy City Harvest staff.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest McCormick Place Rooftop Farm and Windy City Harvest Washington Park Youth Farm

Rebeca Davila

Rebeca Davila
Community Area: Uptown/Andersonville

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the apprenticeship program because I was ready to deepen my understanding and application of urban agricultural practices through hands-on experiences, to learn how to grow healthy vegetables and fruit in a profitable way, and to become a part of a community that aims to be sustainable.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I intend to powerfully integrate my passions in social work, traditional Chinese medicine (acupuncture and herbs), and urban agriculture to promote health, food access, and community development in a variety of contexts. Currently, I am chairing the garden committee to establish an herb and vegetable garden at St. Augustine College. Groundbreaking took place May 2017!

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Sales and Elawa Farm

Renee DeFour

Renee DeFour
Community Area: Logan Square

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I have always been interested in sustainability, the environment, food, and local economies.  I applied to the program to learn more about the effects of urban agriculture in these areas while gaining technical skills in organic farming.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to have a career in urban agriculture and eventually own my own business that will positively affect the environment and my community.

Internship Placement:  Rick Bayless Garden

Maggie Dohr

Maggie Dohr
Community Area: Pilsen

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I joined Windy City Harvest to learn technical skills for three-season growing in the Chicago area as well as small farm management.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to start my own farm as an individual or collective that brings low-cost produce and sustainable practices to local communities.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest North Lawndale Youth Farm

ReynaldoEngram

Reynaldo Engram
Community Area: North Lawndale

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
To find myself. I want to work with the youth of my community to help them find work in the garden instead of fighting in the streets.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
To be in touch with the universe and become the best organic farmer ever.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest McCormick Place Rooftop Farm

Daniel Farrell

Daniel Farrell
Community Area: Beverly

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the program because I have been interested in organic foods and healthy eating for some time now.  I wanted to become more involved in the growing process and this program presented a great opportunity.  I am hoping to learn and develop the necessary skills to become a successful grower.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to apply the knowledge and skills I obtained into a career in sustainable agriculture. I would like to own my own farm, using organic practices.

Internship Placement: Hoot Blossom Farm

Ken Gordon

Ken Gordon
Community Area: Oak Park

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I needed to know all I could about farming and this program become available.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
Try and help educate everyone I know about this kind of farming, as well as stay on top of what the future of farming has for me.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest PCC Wellness Farm

Kevin Kearns

Kevin Kearns
Community Area: Pilsen

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
After volunteering on a couple farms out west, I found myself in Chicago with the passion to pursue farming.  This program was the perfect next step in my farming career.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to take what I have learned and manage my own farm, whether it is an urban setting or further out.  I want to spread knowledge and help feed the community.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Rodeo Farm

Angela Klipp

Angela Klipp
Community Area: Humboldt Park

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I am excited by all of the new urban farms and the ways communities are being brought together by agriculture.  I wanted to be a part of that movement.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to get involved with a farm or community organization that brings together and empowers its members around food and agriculture.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest North Lawndale Youth Farm

Nia Marchetti

Nia Marchetti
Community Area: Roscoe Village/North Center

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I wanted a new career in a completely different field that had goals that I believed in and I felt that the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program would be a good stepping stone from a medical background. I also wanted to learn how to be self-sustainable. I believe in eating clean food and growing food to help hungry, underprivileged people and I have always wanted to work in a field with like-minded positive people.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
A number of opportunities have opened because of this program. I would like to get a job in this field or start a business of my own. I am undecided now, but I have a strong interest in growing plants for producing essential oils locally.

Internship Placement: Big Delicious Planet

Carolina Medina

Carolina Medina
Community Area: Pilsen

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the WCH Apprenticeship program because I needed a skill to re-enter the labor force after being a stay-at-home mom for 20 years. I also wanted to learn how to grow vegetables after cooking, eating, and enjoying them for so many years.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to spread the invaluable knowledge and enthusiasm that the Windy City Harvest Program has given me to my family, friends, and community. My Windy City Harvest education has given me the confidence and skills to grow food, which is a most rewarding ability that I intend to promote and share with others.

Internship Placement: Growing Solutions

Chaz Morales-Williams

Chazarhae Morales-Williams
Community Area: Bronzeville/Old Town

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship program?
Before I found Windy City Harvest, I spent a lot of time, energy, effort, and money navigating through academic and professional careers. I knew I wanted to invest myself in social work and I tried doing so through arts activism and community development. It was during my time as a teaching artist in the Chicago Public Schools that I realized nutrition and access to food play a major role in the wellness and success of children and their communities. 

I applied to Windy City Harvest as a means of communal, familial, and self-care. I felt that immersing myself in a world of flora would promote personal growth and exploration and I saw this program as an opportunity to learn more about the language of nature and agriculture as a means of cultural, personal, and professional empowerment that I will carry on and pay forward for the rest of my life. I also applied to this program to show my daughter what the results of hard work can look like; how vast our influence can soar, and how far our impact can reach when we move and work from a place of universal love, accord, and compassion for nature and all of its inhabitants.

What do you hope to do with your WCH Education in the future?
I hope to empower people. I hope to meet enough people, teach enough people, and continue learning how to cultivate our environments in ways that benefit and evolve our global village. I hope to use food as a means to bridge gaps between communities, cultures, and nations; to deepen our reliance and alliance with each other while lessening our collective dependence on government assistance for basic needs such as food, education, healthcare, economic stability, etc. I hope to open and run a wellness center and a grocery store and take part in creating nature-based education and economic systems that promote a holistic re-education of humanity. I hope to see food as the common language every creature speaks. I hope to continue using the plethora of networks, resources, relationships, and friendships I gain through Windy City Harvest as a gateway to fulfilling my dreams and aspirations for our collective futures. 

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Sales

Yvette Nicholson

Yvette Nicholson
Community Area: Uptown

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I needed employment. I learned how to acquire the skills to help myself, and continue to work with people in the community. The community should be aware that sustainable agriculture is the way to grow.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
Implement sustainable agriculture in the communities that greatly need awareness.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Rodeo Farm

Sean Ruane

Sean Ruane
Community Area: Bridgeport

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
I applied to the program because I am interested in sustainable urban development.  I also want to help people get more connected to their food and to the environment.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
I hope to collaborate with a friend to start a nonprofit eco-justice center that focuses on community development, education, advocacy, farming, and composting.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Legends Farm

Dennis Womack

Dennis Womack
Community Area: North Lawndale

Why did you apply to the Windy City Harvest Apprenticeship Program?
To further my knowledge of farming and improve the marketing of my own produce to the public and private business.

What do you hope to do with your Windy City Harvest education in the future?
Grow produce on my own farm in my hometown and maybe make some money as well.

Internship Placement: Windy City Harvest Arturo Velasquez Institute Farm