Student Farm Field House, ca 1979

The Student Farm began in 1977, when a small group of dedicated students planted their first crops on a 20-acre parcel on the west side of campus. Their goal was to explore and learn about alternative farming and gardening through shared physical work, experimentation, and problem solving.

Soon students initiated a number of projects which allowed them to gain practical skills, knowledge and experience in a number of areas related to organic farming, ecological horticulture and environmental education. These projects have grown over time and each quarter scores of students participate in them as volunteers and interns and through numerous formal courses which use the farm for field-based learning. Student Farm staff support student initiatives and provide long-term stability to the farm’s operations.


new farmhouse
Student Farm Field House Today

Today, our farm is guided by a team of staff and student employees. They work together to ensure that all UC Davis students continue to have diverse opportunities for learning about and experimenting with sustainable agriculture and food systems. The Student Farm has been a program of the Agricultural Sustainability Institute (ASI) since ASI’s founding in 2007.

Additional information about the Student Farm’s history is available. See:

1. Van Horn, Mark. Moving from the Margins toward the Center. In Sayre, L. and S. Clark. Fields of Learning: The Student Farm Movement in North America. University of Kentucky Press. Lexington. 2011. (Click Here)
2. Development of Organic and Sustainable Agricultural Education at the University of California, Davis: A Closer look at Practice and Theory. (Click Here)