CofC Students partner with MUSC urban farm to build connections with Gullah culture

November 21, 2022

Nearly two dozen College of Charleston students immersed themselves in Gullah history, culture, agriculture and culinary traditions as part of a hands-on “Service Saturday” project coordinated by CofC sophomore Alani Boyd. The event took place on  Saturday, November 19 and blended in-depth learning about social justice issues with direct service to support community partners involved in mitigating these issues.

Boyd, a CofC Honors College student and CofC Bonner Leader studying International Studies and Political Science, developed and organized the Gullah learning project throughout the Fall 2022 semester as part of her Bonner responsibilities.

The day-long learning experience will focus on three key components:

  • Cultural and historical Gullah education, with a focus on the land, food and agriculture.
  • Service at MUSC Urban Farm, including planting and harvesting crops that are vital to Gullah culinary customs. Some herbs and vegetables from the site will be used to prepare a meal for the group and the majority of portions will be donated to Destiny Community Café in North Charleston, South Carolina’s first and only pay-what-you-can cafe. The planting and seeding will support the Farm’s spring harvest.
  • Interactive Gullah-inspired meal preparation, cooking, and reflection with Takeya Meggett, an area chef with Gullah roots.

Boyd is one of 22 Bonner Leaders at the College. As part of the four-year civic leadership and development program, Bonner Leaders partner with local community partners and non-profits to serve approximately 300 hours per academic year. In addition, Bonner Leaders meet weekly to discuss important social justice issues with a focus on how they can personally impact the community. CofC is one of just 65 colleges and universities in the United States to offer the Bonner Leader Program. The national program is an initiative of the CofC Center for Civic Engagement.