Paul Haag and Rusty Thompson are the newest interns at White Violet Center for Eco-Justice at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, a ministry of the Sisters of Providence.
Paul began his six month internship on Jan. 15. He is originally from West Terre Haute, but most recently comes from Battleboro, Vermont, where he is a student at the School for International Training and working on his master’s degree in sustainable development.
He has a political science degree from Indiana State University, served in the Marine Corps for four years during the Gulf War and spent two years in the Peace Corps participating in an animal husbandry program in Guatemala. He is married to Rosa and has a 3-year-old daughter, Xiomara.
Rusty began his one year internship on March 5. He has recently moved to where his parents grew up in Sullivan County, about 30 minutes from White Violet Center. His parents are new owners of about 40 acres of land there.
“We’d like to develop that land in a sustainable way and use the resources on the land; so I came here to continue my education,” Rusty said. “I’m learning the practical side of taking care of gardens and what it takes to keep things going.”
Most recently Rusty lived in Houston, but he has also lived in Scotland, Turkey and was born in the United Arab Emirates.
Rusty has an associates degree in Biblical studies from the College of Biblical Studies in Houston. Prior to coming to White Violet Center, he spent three months in an internship with Midwest Permaculture in Stelle, Ill.