Skip to content

Media Contact: Maddy Elledge
(706) 379-5319,
[email protected]

Young Harris College Hosts 25th Annual Beekeeping Institute

YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – Young Harris College and the University of Georgia recently co-hosted the 25th annual Beekeeping Institute, May 18-21. Held on the YHC campus, the Institute is a four-day event consisting of lectures and workshops covering a range of beekeeping topics.

The Beekeeping Institute was founded in 1992 and represents the single most comprehensive opportunity in the Southeast for concentrated training in all aspects of practical beekeeping.  With over 250 participants, this year was the largest group the Institute has seen in its 25-year history.

“I believe we had many, many satisfied folks that got a bit of the taste of the Young Harris spirit that permeates this wonderful corner of the mountains,” said YHC Professor of Biology and Chair of the Department of Biology Paul Arnold, Ph.D., who co-founded the event along with Robert Brewer, Towns County extension director, and Keith Delaplane, Ph.D., professor of entomology at UGA.

During the conference, participants had the opportunity to learn from internationally known apicultural biologists, enjoy the annual Honey Show, and even become Certified Beekeepers through the Georgia Master Beekeeping Program.

Nine YHC students had the chance to become Certified Beekeepers at the Institute, including Sheldon Clark, a junior interdisciplinary studies major from Johns Creek, Ga., and Trina Duncan, a freshman interdisciplinary studies major from Monroe, Ga.

“When I attended the Institute, I had no idea that there were so many beekeepers and people interested in keeping bees. People came from all across the world to attend this conference at Young Harris,” said Duncan.

Both Clark and Duncan look at their experience at the Institute as the start of a new hobby. “I wanted to take YHC’s ‘Introduction to Beekeeping’ course offered in the Spring to overcome my fear of bees,” said Duncan. “After working with the hives on campus, I knew that I wanted to get certified.”

In addition to Clark and Duncan, newly certified YHC beekeepers include sophomore  Cesar Bustamante, of Young Harris, Ga., sophomore English major Natalee Diehl, of Rome, Ga., sophomore communications studies major Kyle Johnson, of Columbus, Ga., junior biology major Jordan Nix, of Gainesville, Ga. , recent creative writing and outdoor leadership major graduate Joshua Schrader, of Young Harris, Ga., sophomore creative writing major Alexis Scoggins, of Social Circle, Ga., sophomore communications studies major Maggie Sproston, of Athens, Ga., and recent biology major graduate Darby Stanford, of Alpharetta, Ga.

“The whole experience was both fun and challenging,” said Clark. “Thanks to Dr. Arnold and the Institute, I am now a Certified Beekeeper. I never thought I would have said that!”

For more information about the Beekeeping Institute, contact (706) 379-5131.

About Young Harris College
Young Harris College is a private, baccalaureate degree-granting college located in the beautiful mountains of North Georgia. Founded in 1886 and historically affiliated with The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College educates, inspires and empowers students through the highest quality liberal arts education. The College currently has more than 1,200 students across five divisions—Education, Fine Arts, Humanities, Mathematics and Science, and Social and Behavioral Sciences. The historic campus in Young Harris, Ga., is currently undergoing major campus improvements to accommodate the College’s growth. Recent LEED-certified campus improvements include the 121,000-square-foot Rollins Campus Center, new residence facilities, and a 57,000-square-foot recreation and fitness center. In 2014, the College was granted active membership in NCAA Division II and remains a fierce competitor in the prestigious Peach Belt Conference. YHC is among fewer than 300 colleges and universities nationwide named to the 2015-2016 list of Colleges of Distinction. For more information, visit

Students holding awards