Former Lakeland College student Roy Kubica has donated half a million dollars in support of expanding Lakeland’s Student-Managed Farm. The 2,100-acre land allows students to further their studies on the ins and outs of agricultural. The farm, which is offered at the Vermilion campus, features livestock such as cattle and sheep.
Kubica, who studied agriculture at Lakeland College, retired from farming in the Thorhild area with his brother Rick in 2017. The class of 1966 alumnus says the funds being used to increase the colleges land base is important in furthering student-led agricultural opportunities.
“I see everything at the college growing and doing well, and I am happy to do my part to help it continue.”
The support from Kubica along with other donors have helped Lakeland buy 309 additional acres of quality cropland. President and CEO of Lakeland College Dr. Alice Wainwright-Stewart says the generosity of the community will help alleviate the challenges that come with growth.
“It really helps us so that we don’t have to put a break on our student innovation, because our students are always looking at what they can do better and the best practices.”
Dr. Wainwright-Stewart says the Crop technology and animal science technology enrolment has grown from 90 students in 2011 to 266 in 2019. She says the quick growth could cause a shortage of land for students, the donations away some of that pressure.
“The community is very important if you think about how they support and step up and help the college. The college can’t make it without the community and the community, in my opinion, the college really ingrates and helps especially the smaller communities.”
The school purchased the new land after donors supporting the Leading. Learning. The Lakeland Campaign. The new land is close to other college land, which is 6 kilometres away from the Vermilion campus. Donors who made the expansion land possible including Kubica will be recognized in a dedication ceremony by the school in the near future.