Beech Hill Farm Crew


About the farm

College of the Atlantic Beech Hill Farm is a working farm growing certified organic vegetables for COA and the wider community. The farm serves as a living laboratory where College of the Atlantic students and faculty engage with agriculture as a central concern of human ecology.

Collaborative work and planning between Beech Hill Farm and the kitchen is helping COA  form a more sustainable system of food production and consumption. In addition to providing locally and sustainably raised meat and produce to COA, Beech Hill Farm operates a seasonal farm stand, offers a CSA program, sells to local markets and restaurants and provides access to food insecure residents of Mount Desert Island through our student-run Share the Harvest program.

Beech Hill Farm provides educational opportunities to COA students and community members through our work-study program, independent projects, summer work program, class visits, events, and workshops. 

Our history

In 1989 COA alumni Barbarina Heyerdahl ’88 and her husband, Aaron Heyerdahl ’87, founded Beech Hill Farm. Barbarina designed the original farm plan for her senior project while at COA. She and Aaron successfully ran and operated the farm for 10 years until donating it to College of the Atlantic in 1999. Since then, COA has been developing this unparalleled opportunity to preserve working local farmland and create a hands-on educational resource for students, farmers, and community members.