Kennedy Primus ’24


African American Studies

Project Title

Farm Project Field Assistant

Certificate(s): Environmental Studies

Our project aimed to understand the mutualisms present in the Native American agricultural tradition of the “three sisters,” corn, beans and squash. My team and I maintained our study site and monitored plant growth using Arable sensors. We used sensors to track changes in vegetation cover, temperature, precipitation and other variables. We also measured soil moisture and identified populations of insects. I learned how to analyze data and apply it to crop development. We found that factors such as weed pressure inflated the estimated vegetation cover. I was fascinated by the concept of growing degree days, which links temperature to plant growth. By using Arable software, I learned how corn plants develop new leaves after experiencing daily temperatures within a certain range over time. In the future, I hope to engage with sustainability and food systems within the environmental policy field. After participating in this internship program, I would like to research how using agricultural methods like the three sisters could impact food systems across different communities.

Internship Year


Project Category

Food Systems and Health


Rubenstein Lab, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University - Princeton, New Jersey


Daniel Rubenstein, Class of 1877 Professor of Zoology, Emeritus, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Emeritus; Gina Talt, Project Manager, Food Systems, Office of Sustainability