Whilst my close friend and colleague Dan Stearns missing his battle with most cancers past thirty day period, his legacy and memory reside on in the lives of his family, good friends and countless pupils that he mentored and assisted above the yrs. In a lot of strategies Dan was a Renaissance male — an outstanding landscape architect, award-successful instructor, former administrator in U.S. Forest Service, musician, enthusiastic cyclist and a thriving business enterprise operator. I don’t forget Dan as a genuine experienced, great gentleman, with a true passion for biking and the outdoors and for his heat smile and welcoming demeanor.
Dan and I were being each retired and professor emeritus of the plant science department. Throughout his career at Penn Point out commencing in 1989 he labored on setting up a thriving and well-highly regarded Landscape Contracting plan in the division. Getting a really obtainable professor, students reached out to him for his information through their time in the system and very long just after they graduated. Dan and I the two shared a passion for training college students and Dan summed up his philosophy: “Teaching is a partnership, and the position of the instructor is to assistance the pupils take a look at and train them to learn, to get them enthusiastic about mastering.”
Craig Weidemann, a different good friend of Dan’s, wrote to me that he remembered Dan often went the extra mile in his teaching and mentoring his landscaping college students. The Point out College or university native also deeply beloved nature and performing outside about his home and farm.
As you walk all-around the Penn Condition campus and the Condition University community you might not be aware the a variety of initiatives (typically two a calendar year) that Dan and his learners undertook to help beautify and increase the two the campus and group. These initiatives enabled the learners to understand the whole process of Landscape Contracting from the style and design, components obtainable to the implementation. I usually appreciated heading up on the 3rd floor (home of the Landscape Contracting Application) and seeing the college students performing on the designs and then observing them implementing them all around campus beneath the watchful eye of Dan and his colleague Martin McGann or Mike Mahoney.
A person undertaking that I specifically liked viewing build was the university student garden found guiding the Horticulture Greenhouse advanced across the road from the Agricultural Administration making. Considering that Elsa Sanchez and I had started a extremely well-known Gardening for Entertaining and Income system we seriously have been enthusiastic when Dan stated they ended up likely tear out the aged, little Quonset-shaped greenhouses and place in raised garden beds that we could use for the course. Dan and the learners did a great job and the lifted back garden beds were being produced from massive Northern white cedar lumber, which is really tough and beautiful. The beds and the fence about the backyard are all aspect of Dan’s and the student’s legacy. Our pupils totally liked planting veggies and little fruits in the beds. Scott Diloreto, greenhouse supervisor, seconded what a wonderful addition the yard has been to the horticulture facility and our plans.
Tommy Wareham, a excellent musician in his have appropriate who grew up with Dan in Point out Faculty, pointed out to me when we had been each savoring breakfast at the counter at the North Atherton Waffle Store that Dan was a lifelong and gifted musician who played a wide range of devices. As I mentioned ahead of — Dan Stearns was in fact a Renaissance male.
So, when you stroll around the Penn Condition campus or are out and about in the local community you might watch some of the structures and backyard styles Dan was included with — the gardens/plantings about the Tyson Horticulture Building, Aged Key, Carnegie Making and Eisenhower Auditorium. Or you could see the pond, yard and walkways all over the Hintz Loved ones Alumni Heart, or go to the Household of Treatment on Beaver Avenue in which a new paver patio and stroll, custom made-designed gazebo, display fence, new plantings, and set up of a new handicap ramp from the property ended up put in. Or you could halt by the Youth Support Bureau where by a full landscape restoration, such as demolition of existing garage, paved patio and walks, installation of a split rail fence, new plantings, new retaining wall, and construction of a trash enclosure ended up finished. Or if you’re hiking up Mount Nittany wherever the development of a picket bridge served individuals mountaineering the trail to the top rated, take time think of Dan and his legacy of teaching learners and building the campus and local community a better place.
Monthly bill Lamont is a professor emeritus in the office of plant science at Penn Condition and can be attained by e-mail: [email protected].