Birch Swart ’22 is first-year student with a double major in Renewable Energy & Ecological Design (REED) and Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems and a minor in music performance from Scituate, MA.
“I was drawn to Green Mountain College for all that the school stands for. Not only could I be with like-minded individuals, but I would be going to a place where sustainability comes first,” notes Birch.
He chose both of these majors because they spoke to his interests the most and he feels that these majors can be really well utilized in society in the current day and age, allowing him to create positive change in the world. He decided to minor in music because music has played a major role throughout his entire life and it is his biggest passion.
He is a member of the GMC Choir, a cappella group, cross country team, and the ultimate frisbee team.
“The men’s cross country program was very fortunate to be able to add a talented individual such as Birch,” said Head Coach Ben Davis. “He had an outstanding season and was a major contributor to the program in his first year — he will no doubt continue his success in years to come.”
Birch has interned at Holy Hill Farm in Cohasset, Massachusetts. On campus, he works with the Sustainability Office a few hours a week and has regular compost and recycling shifts using the GMC student designed bike and trailer transportation system.
In his everyday life, Birch constantly thinks about his carbon footprint on planet and desires to have as little negative impact as possible on the environment. At the same time, he strives to make the largest positive impact on the global community through music and positive change.
Birch believes that GMC was named the 2018 #1 Sierra Magazine Cool School due to the combination of inspiring professors, a diverse student population, and a passionate overarching mission in sustainability. He believes that GMC is the perfect fit for students to embrace their passions through their studies and get the most immersive environmental education possible at a sustainable and artistic school.
Upon graduation from GMC, Birch is interested in becoming a city planner or sustainable architect who starts a sustainable city revolution. He also dreams of owning a farm- to-table restaurant on a farm — something that his Sustainable Agriculture major will help him to achieve.
“Ideally, I would love to tour the world playing music with my friends in a band that creates happiness for its listeners.”