The Future Farmer Internship Program is designed to provide opportunities to veterans who desire to explore agricultural careers. Details of the program are found below.
HOUSING: Program participants who require housing will be provided a tiny home for the duration of their internship, when available.
TRANSPORTATION: Depending on available funds and/or partners, FARM can assist participants with their initial transportation to the FARM Internship Program. Once enrolled and on-site, participants are responsible for their own personal transportation needs.
ELIGIBILITY: Must be a Veteran. Participants with a history of dependency must have formal wellness letter from their health care provider or treatment facility. If in need of assistance in this area, we can assist you with finding the appropriate facility and confidential resources.
The Student Trainee is engaged in a cooperative educational hands on training program. The primary purpose of this program is to provide agricultural trainees with exposure to a variety of functions and responsibilities at the FARM location. In addition, this on-the-job training program is designed to provide the incumbent with an overall understanding of a for-profit farm's functions, policies, regulations, and procedures.
The intern will receive intense instruction in the following duties:
- Assisting with trial preparation activities including seed counting, sorting, placement of sample envelopes into planting order and order verification.
- Assisting with effective planting and plot maintenance activities.
- Following policies and procedures to ensure personal safety, the safety of others and the safe operation of motorized farm equipment.
- Participate in composting operations for farm use and sale.
- Operating and maintaining plot equipment and vehicles including trucks and trailers.
- Supervising and working with temporary and casual field laborers.
- Assisting in the feeding, maintenance and care of livestock, and poultry on site.
- Farmer's Market Operations from field to market.
- Assisting with tours of field sites and facilities.
- Be open to the opportunity to heal and be a willing participant in the case studies being performed at the FARM.
- Appropriate drivers license
- Highly motivated with the ability to work independently or as part of a team
- Able to receive positive direction and constructive criticism
- Organization and time management skills
- Interest in learning agronomic practices
- Basic mechanical skills
- Ability to work long hours if needed (8 hour days)
ENVIRONMENT/PHYSICAL CONDITIONS: Even though we are an organic farm, outdoor working environment may have exposure to dust, animal manures and environmental allergens. The internship program is mostly active in nature and will involve walking, standing, lifting, pulling, pushing, kneeling, stooping and bending. Some tasks require fine motor skills and coordination, as well as safely lifting and carrying items weighing up to approximately 50 lbs.
- Provide a full and realistic view of the work involved in a career in agriculture.
- Program integrates academic preparation with practical application and skill development in the workplace.
- Provided with opportunities in self leadership training and entrepreneurial workshops.
- Classes in how to seek grant opportunities for beginner farmers, how to navigate the USDA, FSA and Farm Bureau agencies.
- Opportunities for outdoor recreational trips monthly.
- Educational opportunities in how to develop their own business, including business plan development, marketing strategies, and financing strategies.
- Weekly Yoga Nidra Meditation instruction
- Weekly Mindful Mediation instruction
- Weekly Bowen Therapy
- Weekly Massage Therapy
- Opportunities with other veteran providers/partnerships such as Equine therapy.
PROGRAM COMPLETION DELIVERABLES: At the end of each program, participants who have successfully completed all requirements will receive a certificate of completion to apply as farm experience requirements (2 yrs total needed for veterans) in order to apply for most federal farm loans.
In addition each participant will be eligible to apply for a full time position as a trainer at our downtown urban farm or can apply at any of our partnering farms for continuing education/experience. Each participant will also receive a copies of The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook: A complete Guide to Managing Finances, Crops and Staff and also Making A Profit by Richard Wiswall (2009).