This week I have spent much of my time as a party planner for various events happening this month.  I was wondering how and why I find myself in this role so frequently, and I think it has much to do with my background as a geoscientist.  I know that might not sound very intuitive, geosciences and party planning, but when you think of the skill set (spatial thinkers that love spreadsheets) it kind of makes sense.  Couple my love for data sets and organization and my background in restaurants and bartending and you have yourself the ideal planner.

One event that I am currently working on is closely linked with my thesis research and personal passion for urban agriculture in Atlanta:

This event is an important stepping stone to sustain a vibrant garden in southwest Atlanta and grow awareness around the value and possibilities these types of sites can have around the city.  Additionally, this group, along with others, will be coming to GSU once a month for a Farmer’s Market.  GSU’s Office of Sustainability and I are working in concert with many passionate student groups and departments to hopefully create a monthly (eventually weekly) market on campus that will connect GSU with the surrounding communities, while also providing local, nutritious food options for a urban campus that is surrounded primarily by less than healthy restaurant options.  This market shows the power of collaboration on campus and the determination of many invested folks to insist on more from their school towards sustainability on campus.

I saw this passion at the CURVE opening and throughout my past few weeks here, with students and faculty alike engaging with one another towards something innovative for the school and their own research.  Although CURVE could not obviously house a farmers market, it provides a space for collaboration, which is a first step in any large project, especially one trying to tackle the bureaucracy of a large institution like GSU.  It invites ideas and networking and provides the technology to make those ideas come to life and become visual for those wanting to understand or engage.

My time in CURVE has provided invaluable networking, both for a diverse contact list and a diverse skill set to utilize for vital projects like the market.  I know more revolutionary projects will come out of this space over the coming months, and I am excited that I get a front row seat.

Nicole Ryerson