2017 Residential Course

The course is set over two beautiful weeks in early June 2017 at the A.I. campus near Marshall, Indiana.

cropped-IMG_0016-e1470760021311.jpgPermaculture Design is an fluid, flexible, and very practical system for reintegrating human systems with the natural world. This course lays the foundations for permaculture design and prepares you to apprentice in design, education, or site implementation OR incorporate permaculture perspectives into your current career path and home system.

This course is recognized by and adheres to the standards of the Permaculture Institute of North America which uphold the internationally-recognized 72-hour curriculum. In addition, the course introduces allied concepts such as nature connection, non-violent communication, and more.

Course materials are shared through discussion, lecture, reading, hands-on activities, 2008 Caden at Paoli pdcdesign practice and review of case studies:  all coming together to give you a solid foundation in Earth Care, People Care, and Future Care. In addition, you will have the opportunity to participate in permablitzes, tours of local sites, and community-based activities and designs outside of our classroom time.

Who should take this course? Home-owners, farmers, planners, teachers, architects, county and municipal staff and officials, students, anyone concerned about the state of our world–in short, everyone! With two weeks to get away and refocus, the course is a wonderful experience for professionals and anyone looking for a fresh perspective.

About the teachers: 

tree planting in indyRhonda Baird is the lead instructor for the course. She combines her experience in social and environmental issues and academic training in history and the study of cultural transmission (through religious studies) with practical homesteading skills learned from her working-class family of origin and nature connection skills learned in part from her children.

Rhonda began her work with permaculture design in 2005 after taking a course from Peter Bane and Keith Johnson. She immediately began apprenticing as a teacher of permaculture design and has loved being able to travel throughout the United States to teach, present, and design. In 2006 she co-founded the Bloomington Permaculture Guild. She founded Sheltering Hills Design, LLC as a design practice and educational firm in 2008. In that year, she also joined the editorial board of Permaculture Design magazine (formerly Permaculture Activist). She served from 2010-2012 as director of the Indiana Forest Alliance. Currently, she serves on the board of the Center for Sustainable Living, the Great Rivers and Lakes Permaculture Institute, and the Association for Regenerative Culture; as a diploma committee member for the Permaculture Institute of North America; and a core organizer for the North American Permaculture Convergence (which just held its second event in September 2016 at Hopland, California’s Solar Living Institute).

Jason Gerhardt has professionally applied ecological design for well over a decade from hyper-arid deserts to lush temperate forests to dense urban centers.  He holds a BA in Sustainable Design as well as Diplomas in Permaculture Design, Education, and Research.  He is known for extensive knowledge of plant ecology, green infrastructure, regenerative agriculture, and urban design.  Jason’s portfolio includes higher education campus planning, farm and ranch site development, ecological curriculum consultation with K-12 schools and conservation organizations, and developing a bioregional vegetable seed business.  He has taught for notable organizations including the US EPA, University of Colorado, Utah State University, Permaculture Institute, and Naropa University, among dozens of others. Jason’s passion is at the intersection of the natural world and human culture.  He applies his keen study of ecosystems and society to his work through Real Earth Design in Saint Louis and around the globe.

We also plan to be joined by Gabriel Hahn and Chris Smyth. (bio’s coming soon)


The course will be hosted by the A.I. campus this year and will be an amazing location in which to engage with nature and do some practical design work.



June 4-18, 2017


Registration requires a $300, non-refundable deposit. The cost of the course is $900 for non-residential; $1,200 for residential students. If you are using the Paypal option below, the fees have been figured into the payment.

Payment arrangements are available, as is a limited amount of work-trade and scholarship money. Please use the contact form below and we will do our best to accommodate you. Please note: There is no full scholarship or work-trade option.

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