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Permaculture Student Testimonials and Reviews

Chris received his Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Villanova University and then his PhD in Biochemistry from Yale University. He then was a Staff Scientist for the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research at the FDA where he studied virus entry and vaccine design. Following his lab work he became a Program Manager at the Institute of Medicine for the Forum on Drug Discovery, Development, and Translation before transitioning into science teaching. For the past four years he has taught Environment Science, Chemistry, Biology and Engineering Design at Georgetown Preparatory School. He is also the father of an amazing daughter Julia who loves to sing and dance. While not in the classroom, he volunteers on organic farms and hopes to advance permaculture values through his newly obtained Certification in Permaculture Design from the Center for Biological Living. -  Chris Defeo


The online course is 100% worth it! I just completed the online 2020 permaculture certification course and was blown away by the amount of information I gained. The information itself is a healthy mix of bass-tacks-know-how (geared towards the Northeast), theoretical, analytical, biological, philosophical, cosmic, and spiritual. Because of this, the class is suited for anyone who is interested in learning or DOING permaculture. Andrew's knowledge is vast, informative, and sobering. You can't fake that. It becomes very clear within the first few minutes.


If you are living in the North East and want to create a green job for yourself, this is the next step you should take.


P.S. If you have any reservations because it's online, it's not an issue at all. It's not worth waiting for the pandemic to be done with. - Ben Feistmann

Andrew's class opened my eyes to new ways of seeing, as well as provided tools for approaching the challenges of our present day society in a positive and impactful way. His focus on "turning the problem into the solution" is something so needed right now in our society, and has inspired me to approach my art and artistry in a whole new way, as well as my everyday life. 


This class goes far beyond gardening and agriculture, and addresses how we can apply the principles of permaculture to all aspects of life, be it big or small, personal or professional. Taking this class was the greatest gift I gave to myself this year, and I know that I will be living my life in a more meaningful and intentional way because of it. 


This class is for everyone- the activist, the artist, the empath, the curious, the farmer, the urbanite, the teacher, the student -- whether you have a 30 acre piece of land or a small windowsill, you will get such immense value and deep knowledge from this class, and will leave a whole lot wiser.


Thank you so much, Andrew and Adriana, for your dedication to the principles and practice of permaculture, and for being so generous and thoughtful with your knowledge. I am deeply grateful to you both, and for this class - Celia Rowlson-Hall



Feeling trapped in a corporate job and seeking a new path, I discovered this thing called permaculture that seemed to resonate with my deepest yearnings for myself and the world. That is, a lifestyle that is ecologically and ethically sound and fulfilling. Thankfully, I answered the call and participated in Andrew Faust’s Urban Permaculture Design Certification in 2009. Those permaculture goggles Andrew gave us expanded my view, allowing me to see a bigger picture of how to approach just about everything. It launched me in the direction of my current and ongoing path as an herbalist, healer, earth lover, dreamer, and spirit-being-in-human-form. Thank you, Andrew and Adriana for your openness, kindness, and wisdom. You are a living, thriving model of a truly fulfilling, beneficial, and regenerative culture. Liz Neves


While taking this class, I found myself describing it to people as Sustainability 101. Before getting into permaculture / taking this class, I knew about various eco friendly practices - organic/local food, composting, gardening, less driving - but this course united all these practices under one broad coherent philosophy underpinned by a set of ethics. One way to frame the ethics, in the words of Bill McDonough, is "how can we love all of the children of all species for all time?" Yes, this may feel ambitious, but it is also hopeful and inspirational. Can we truly respect and protect the land which gives us so much while happily satisfying our various needs? Can we leave the land in better shape after having engaged with it? To both these questions this course answers a resounding 'yes', then quickly proceeds to the practicalities of how to do so, delving into the growing of food, energy systems, water management, the concept of appropriate technology, and more. This course is the real deal and it is refreshing. - Boris Kerzner

-- He is an important messenger for the new beginning and I will consider him a mentor.


-- Legend! A highly educational, empowering, earthy experience. One in which the main focus was learning how it is possible to live a simpler and more harmonious lifestyle. Thanks for being legends.


-- Explore your area of interest . . . in a highly supportive and informed environment.


-- While learning about these concepts you get to live with folks who are designing their lives founded in these values. Great role models!


-- The connection between the humans and the land. Andrew very plainly and clearly represented some very basic concepts that made a major impact on me because I never looked at the human species as anything other than the dominant species rather than one of many.


-- Hike, swim and meet all the wonderful people in the area.


-- I got the pleasure of visiting other homesteads and communities to compare different styles and approaches one might take.

This class drastically changed the way I think about and observe the world and its problems and has made me think about positive things I can do to improve its condition.


-- I really liked the fact that we could start a class talking about super fund toxic waste sites and somehow end up talking about what we think god is.


-- I really appreciated the focus on this bioregion Other permaculture courses tend to use too many foreign examples. I loved the melding of biodynamics and permaculture.


-- I feel I explored and was introduced to many areas and issues I previously didnt realize existed.

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