This fall, Sewanee initiated a pilot First Year Program, sometimes called by its initials FYP, also dubbed Finding Your Place. About 100 first year students are involved. They’ve been on campus since mid-August, exploring the Domain, reading, and discussing what they are learning. The students are divided into groups of 15, each of which is led by a faculty member. Groups of four or five students complete a capstone project, the object if which is to learn more about Sewanee.
Several of these projects have covered aspects of the local flora, so the herbarium has been involved. Kimberly Williams is doing an inventory of the plants of Morgan’s Steep as part of a project on coming to Sewanee and taking on new challenges — like rappelling at Morgan’s Steep. Peter Davis is doing an herbal of a neglected gravesite in the University cemetery that his group is cleaning and refurbishing. And Ben Sadler is doing a flora of the Mountain Goat Trail as part of Forrest Pilkington’s Eagle Scout project. FYP culminates October 16, when the groups present their capstone projects. It’s been exciting meeting these first year students and helping them get acquainted with our diverse flora.