Summer Internship Evaluation.

Internship Learning Contract Evaluation

Student Last and First Name: Hardy, Orin
Program, Course or Contract Title: The Business of Sustainability
Quarter and Academic Year: Summer, 2009
Beginning Date: 22 June, 2009        Completion Date: 10 September, 2009

Faculty: Joe Tougas, Ph.D.

During Summer Quarter, 2009, Orin successfully completed all aspects of an Internship Learning Contract, entitled The Business of Sustainability: Watching Philosophy Turn into Action, with the learning objectives of: a) develop skills needed to effectively organize events that move our society closer to sustainability,  b) develop marketing and outreach skills, c) deepen his understanding of what it means to be a ‘sustainable’ human being, d) learn the basics of how to create and maintain a permaculture training farm, and e) research the current environmental movement.

Orin undertook an intensive ten week internship at the Regenerative Design Institute in Northern California. His internship activities included: a) permaculture gardening in the Institute’s large garden, b) water management, c) care of farm animals, d) building projects, using sustainable materials, e) attending the “Ecology of Leadership” training program, and f) assisting with conference event coordination and meal preparation. In total, Orin spent over 400 hours doing internship work.

In addition, Orin read and wrote analytical and reflective reports on the following books: Diamond’s, Guns, Germs and Steel, Quinn’s, Ishmael, Hawken’s Blessed Unrest and Natural Capitalism, and McKibben’s Deep Economy.  He met weekly with the internship field supervisor to get feedback on his work and to discuss his thoughts and what he was learning.

Written by: Joe Tougas, Ph.D.

Orin’s success in this internship is best expressed in the words of his field supervisor, James Stark, co-director of the Regenerative Design Institute:

Orin Hardy … fully participated in almost every aspect of our educational center and performed his tasked at a high level of competency. During his placement he worked a minimum of 35 hours a week and was always open to rising to the occasion when additional center needs arose even if it took him beyond his hourly commitment. He was an excellent team player.
Orin is a critical thinker and not only brought his skills forward for his own development but was constantly raising the bar of curiosity for all those on our staff. His out-going personality welcomed and warmed participants who attended programs this summer. His bright eyes and smile where a constant delight on the farm.
During the Ecology of Leadership program he was able to go toe to toe with all the other participants in sharing his insights and bringing his commitment to doing inner work forward. He was consistently sharing authentically what was present for him and that generosity was an inspiration to others to go beyond their own old comfort levels of intimately connecting with a group to create a healing environment.
In conclusion, I can say that Orin completely fulfilled the commitments in his plan of study for the RDI internship and we would have no hesitation in inviting him back as an intern or upon graduation as a potential staff member.

It was clear in Orin’s reflective and analytical writing during the internship that he was able to apply the theoretical ideas he was reading about to the practical and interpersonal challenges he was encountering at RDI. He took particular care with the editing of his final papers, so that his original ideas were communicated clearly and in a way that would be accessible to a non-specialist audience.

Leadership Training            4  Credits
Sustainable Entrepreneurship         4  Credits
Ecological Agriculture            4  Credits
Environmental Philosophy        4  Credits


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