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Students volunteer at organic farm on alternative fall break

For several Randolph students, fall break meant rising early in the morning to harvest potatoes, pull weeds, and plant seeds.

It was an extraordinary experience, said Meron Demeke ’15. “It could not be any further from my day to day life and it was refreshing. Most importantly, it was such an honor to help.”_IGP7791

This was the second year that Randolph offered an alternative fall break program, which gives students the opportunity to volunteer during the short break from school. For a few days beginning last weekend, students helped out on a A Berry Patch Farm, a USDA-certified organic farm in West Jefferson, N.C., owned by Wayne “Boots” and Jeanne Berry.

_IGP7639Amanda Denny, Randolph’s director of leadership and engagement, organized the trip along with student leaders Annaleise McKenzie ‘17 and Demeke. Seven students participated. Like other alternative fall and spring break trips, the experience was a memorable break for the participants.

“The trip felt like going back to Korea and working on my aunt’s farm,” said Jaeha Cho ‘18. “I also learned new things such as using lime-based fertilizer, and I got to know more friends whom I had never talked to before.”

Cho’s favorite memories of the trip were driving the tractor around the farm and taking photos of his friends as they worked on the farm. “This is definitely a different way to spend your break, but it’s worth it!” he said.

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