After just five years in existence, the Organic Crop Unit at the University of Tennessee has been ranked among the six best programs in the nation for teaching students how to grow crops that meet U.S. Department of Agriculture organic standards, according to the Organic Farming Research Foundation in Santa Cruz, Calif.
UT’s program was the newest one to be named the best by the foundation’s first-ever Organic Land Grant Assessment.
“There’s no money with that, just fame,” said Annette Wszelaki, an assistant professor and UT extension specialist. “We got a perfect score on their eight criteria.”
The criteria included elements such as having organic crop production classes and dedicated faculty members, a farm where students do hands-on learning and an internship program, among other things.