Donielle Nolan (Doni for short) has been at Mason for almost 10 years. She started out as a student in 2010, studying biology and volunteering as the president of the GMU Organic Gardening Association (GOGA). She joined the Office of Sustainability in 2013 as the summer intern for the Potomac Heights Organic Vegetable Garden (PHVG) and later as the assistant coordinator for the Permaculture Design Certification Course (PDCC).
After working all summer in the garden, she knew that growing food was her passion. In 2014, she was hired part time to start the hydroponic greenhouse program at the President’s Park Greenhouse. The facility is still going strong today, hosting hundreds of volunteers every semester, and growing lettuce, microgreens, and culinary herbs year round, which are served in the dining halls on campus. She became full time staff in 2016, and began managing GOGA, the PHVG and the Innovation Food Forest (IFF), in addition to the hydroponic greenhouse.
Once she received her Masters of Science in plant science and pest management in 2018, Doni began teaching sustainability courses as adjunct faculty for the School of Integrative Studies. Her passion and joy is contagious as she engages and educates the community about sustainable food production, composting, herbal medicine and so much more. If you would like to get involved with the Greenhouse & Gardens Program, or have a landscaping related project idea, please contact Doni at firstname.lastname@example.org, or find her in the campus gardens during the weekly volunteer shifts.