We’re moving to Goddard College!

Posted February 24th, 2020 by Larken Bunce

Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism (VCIH) recently signed a contract with Goddard College to move our school and clinic from Montpelier to the historic Greatwood campus in Plainfield this June.

VCIH will join EarthWalk Vermont, also located on the campus, for a mission-based partnership in Goddard College’s new Village for Learning Initiative.

VCIH’s sliding-scale herbal clinics and apothecary serve hundreds of clients in the Central Vermont and Chittenden County communities, while our nationally-recognized programs enroll 60-70 students annually. As the popularity of herbal medicine continues to grow, a need for additional classroom spaces and outdoor teaching and cultivation areas sparked the search for a new location in 2019.

the entrance to the dorm village at Goddard

Founded in 2007 by herbalists Betzy Bancroft, Larken Bunce and Guido Masé, VCIH is currently stewarded by Operations Director Laura Litchfield and Bunce, who assumed the role of Executive Director in 2019. Bunce is an alum of Goddard and former faculty member in the College’s Health Arts and Sciences program. “Goddard is a perfect match for us,” she said.”We can expand our gardens, renovate the greenhouse, access outdoor teaching areas, and make use of Goddard’s extensive woodlands.”

the greenhouse, surrounded by future garden space

Minor renovation will be needed for a former dormitory to serve the purposes of our small school and clinic–including lab and apothecary space. Goddard College’s founder Royce Pitkin first envisioned the Village for Learning as a concept in 1964 when the multi-colored, cubical dormitories were constructed.

the former King dorm, VCIH’s future 3000 sq. ft. home

Goddard President Bernard Bull envisions the Village for Learning Initiative as a partnership of interconnected organizations that support each other, collaborate on projects, and share common values. “Combined with our $4 million Together for Goddard Campaign, the Village for Learning Initiative embodies our commitment to imagining new ways of living out our longstanding practice of educational innovation, experimentation, and learner-centered progressive education. We look forward to growing alongside VCIH, EarthWalk, while actively seeking other like-minded partners.”

EarthWalk Vermont has provided nature-based mentoring since 2005 and is similarly enthusiastic about the potential of the new Village for Learning Initiative. “All of us at EarthWalk are overjoyed with the news that VCIH will be our neighbors,” said Elaine Toohey, EarthWalk’s Executive Director. “EarthWalk is about reconnecting with and caring for ourselves, one another and the Earth. Growing personal resilience, conscientious nature stewardship, leadership, and powerful awareness of resource and interdependence are at the heart of regenerative communities so needed in the world. We look forward to nourishing the work of nature connection alongside VCIH!”

the land at Goddard is full of hawthorn!

With the new location, VCIH plans to extend its offerings as well. “We’re thrilled to get to work creating a selection of short, intensive courses to serve folks wanting to connect with herbal medicine, but who aren’t able to relocate for our existing long-term, residential programs,” said Bunce.

At our roots, all three organizations are dedicated to building personal, cultural, and ecological resilience,” said Bunce. “We’re eager to see the unique opportunities that emerge through our work together.”


We’ll have lots more to share over the coming months, but to start we’ll be running a fundraising campaign later this Spring in preparation for our move and we’d be so grateful for your support! Watch your email for more information in the next few months.

Goddard’s historic main campus gardens