HCC Is Buzzing with Excitement with Installation of Honey Bee Hive
What’s the latest buzz at Howard Community College? It’s a new bee hive the college recently started as part of its culinary program.
This was made possible by the Honeybee Conservancy/Anthophilous, which awarded HCC a Sponsor-a-Hive grant. The grant includes: One beekeeping beginner kit, including bee supplies, tools and books; one queen bee and her court; one package of bees; and one beekeeping suit.
Chef David Milburn and Chef Michael Levins from the college’s culinary program took a beekeepers course through the Howard County Beekeepers Association (HCBA) and will care for the bees. The HCBA provided the chefs a mentor, David Schultz, to assist with the bees for the first year.
The bees were recently installed on the college campus. They are a collaborative initiative at the college and will eventually pollinate a community vegetable garden planned for HCC. The garden will benefit the culinary program and the HCC Food Pantry, which helps combat food insecurity to students. Once honey is available, it will be stocked in the pantry and will be used by students in the culinary program.
The honey will also be sold in the student learning restaurant slated to open in fall 2019, according to Milburn. The proceeds will stay in the culinary program and be used for scholarships, study abroad, books and supplies, and more.
“We have about ten thousand bees – they were overnighted to us from Georgia,” Milburn said. “Our goal with the honey bees is to pollinate the flowers, fruits, and vegetables in the area and also to be able to use the honey in my classroom and the culinary program. Hopefully we’ll have enough left over that we can give some to the food pantry here on campus.”
In addition to the hive installed in May, a “nuc” of bees, a small honey bee colony, was installed earlier this month.
“We now have two hives on campus,” Milburn said. “The first hive is doing great. We have signs of a healthy brood and honey production already.”