Superintendent John Lavoie
57 River Rd, Andover,
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Greater Lawrence Tech Introduces Sustainable Horticulture and Landscape Program to Students
ANDOVER — Students with an interest in sustainability or landscape design/construction now have a place to hone their interests and talents, as Greater Lawrence Technical School launched a new program this year that further expands its career and college pathways.
The Horticulture and Landscape Program, the first of its kind at GLTS, will focus on creating environmental stewards who are well versed in the ecological, organic and responsible approaches to the design, construction and care of all types of landscapes. Students who opt to proceed with this technical pathway will leave prepared to attend a two or four year college, or gain employment in the field.
The program is led by instructor Peter Hinrichs, who has worked in all facets of the field — from landscape management, design and development to garden curation, and most recently as a horticulture teacher — and will use his knowledge and experience to guide students through lectures, discussions and hands-on training.
“The focus of this program is to not only connect students to the environment, but to do it in such a way that turns into a career for them,” Hinrichs said. “This could mean building landscapes, working in masonry, growing food, or even creating rain gardens that could minimize storm water waste and cool buildings. While we do focus on plants, there are many more aspects to this field and we want students to get the full picture of all horticulture has to offer.”
All freshmen will spend four days in horticulture as part of GLTS’ exploratory program, where they will learn the basics of the green (sustainability) industry, analyze different plant types and their purpose, and get a look into landscape construction technique, materials, site analysis and design.
The first group of students to designate this as their vocation will be decided later this month. They’ll also be the inaugural class to use GLTS’ new state-of-the-art greenhouse, which is currently being constructed on the school’s campus and is slated to be completed in the spring. A groundbreaking event for the project is tentatively planned for April.
As they delve deeper into the vocation, students will also learn basic machine operation and maintenance on tractors, backhoes and mowers and will gain small business (entrepreneurial) skills.
At the end of their senior year, horticulture students will leave with a deep understanding of the field and, if they choose, an area of focus that they can further develop in their post-secondary education or career.
“The industry surrounding sustainability is trending upward and the job market is extremely favorable for students entering this field,” Superintendent John Lavoie said. “Our Horticulture and Landscape program will prepare students to immediately go into the green industry workforce or into a two or four-year college program for horticulture or design.”