FEASt group logo, with FEASt written at the top in brown, and Food, Environement, and Agricultural Studies written underneath in organge lettering

FEASt is an interdisciplinary initiative started by members of the Grossman Lab in 2014 to bring together students from across the University of Minnesota to learn about and discuss the intersections of natural and social science perspectives on agricultural research, politics, and social movements. The group seeks to facilitate dialogue to critically navigate the broad social, economic, and political concerns influencing the food and agricultural sciences. In 2020, FEASt was the honored recipient of the UMN Borealis Exemplary Graduate Student Organization Award. FEASt encourages participation from a wide array of people interested in these issues.

FEASt has gone through many iterations, but exists now as a meeting place for ideas around responsible science and how to leverage our knowledge to work in partnership with communities to address complex, multifaceted problems. We recognize that in order for our work to be impactful and lasting, it needs to be created, designed, and pursued in concert with communities. We value many forms of knowledge that contribute to a rich picture of societal challenges that may not be seen from a singular discipline or perspective. In order to better equip graduate students to pursue this type of work, FEASters initiated a class in Fall 2019 called “Critical Approached to Agroecology” that seeks to help students gain the knowledge, skills, and habits of mind to plan, implement, and evaluate sustained action in collaboration with others both within and beyond the University.

To be clear, FEASt has grown, and is no longer in the hands of the Grossman Lab, although many lab members still participate. We welcome students and partners from all walks of life to join us.  No prior knowledge of the subject is assumed or required. Most importantly, we are interested in curiosity, critical thinking, challenging assumptions, and being sustained by the energy of each others’ company.

To get involved, contact FEASt at [email protected].