Aspiring farmers, find a job in agriculture! To learn about farming, the best thing is to get to work! Spring and summer are ideal for apprenticeships when farmers need hands to help with the long, hard hustle of the growing season. The Greenhorns jobs list is a good place to start searching. And be sure to look up your local regional sustainable food network! (links below) If you are unable to quit your current job, put your gear in storage, and move to a farm internship or job, consider volunteering on a farm to get a sense of the pace of commercial agriculture. Organic Volunteers and WWOOF USA are great resources to find a farm in the U.S. Also, farmers don’t need just field work support. They also need accounting, babysitting, graphic design, web design, carpentry, plumbing, pep talks, social connections, and ice cream. You can learn a lot about farming by just befriending and supporting a farmer, young or old. Scroll for links to important resources!  

 

+++ The Grange School of Adaptive Agriculture

How do you practice Adaptive Agriculture? You start by educating yourself on the cutting edge practices, by questioning conventions, by equipping yourself with the skills to flex, adapt, adjust to changing conditions and contexts.

At the Grange School of Adaptive Agriculture, students are immersed in a residential training program and are exposed to a broad spectrum of scales, styles, strategies, and skills.  This 14 week program combines experiential learning on a 5,000 acre diverse ranch with classroom based learning in order to send students off with a comprehensive vocabulary and understanding of the foundations of small scale agriculture. Over 25 field trip hosts and 12 guest instructors participate in the learning experience, giving students a well rounded education that will help to launch them into a career in the food system.
Are you looking for your entry point into sustainable agriculture?  Having a strong understanding of crop production, animal husbandry, business management, industrial arts, and community dynamics is integral to launching you into the food system.  Join us at the GSAA for an inspirational and transformational 14 weeks. April and July 2017 start dates, applications are now open!

http://www.school-of-adaptive-agriculture.org/

+++Apprenticeships in Regenerative Ranching and Farming

Offered through The Quivira Coalition’s New Agrarian Program on partner ranches and farms in New Mexico, Colorado, Montana, and California
The Quivira Coalition’s New Agrarian Program (NAP) partners with skilled ranchers and farmers to offer annual apprenticeships in regenerative agriculture. Together, we create opportunities for comprehensive, full-immersion experiential learning from expert practitioners in professional settings. This program is designed to support the next generation of food producers and specifically targets first-career professionals with a sincere commitment to life at the intersection of conservation and regenerative agriculture. NAP mentors are dedicated stewards of the land; they practice intentional, regenerative methods of food or fiber production, provide excellent animal care, and are skilled and enthusiastic teachers.
In 2017, we are offering seven paid apprenticeship opportunities including:
  • San Juan Ranch (Saguache, CO): San Juan Ranch is a certified organic, grass-fed beef ranch operated by George Whitten and Julie Sullivan. The apprenticeship curriculum includes Holistic Management, low-stress animal husbandry, range health monitoring, planned grazing, herding, ranch infrastructure maintenance, soil health, and grass-fed finishing.
  • James Ranch Artisan Cheese (Durango, CO): James Ranch Artisan Cheese manages a small herd of Jersey cows for the production of raw milk and small-batch cheeses. Operated by Dan and Becca James, JRAC is one of several family-run enterprises on the larger James Ranch.
  • Brett Gray Ranch (Rush, CO): Round River Resource Management LLC is a land resource and livestock management company dedicated to restoring and improving agricultural operations through the principles of Holistic Management in a sustainable manner and consistent with the goals of the resource owner.
  • Ranney Ranch (Corona, NM): The Ranney Ranch is a family owned cow-calf ranching operation that sits at 6200′ in the high mesa country of central New Mexico. The ranch sells young, range-finished beef direct to consumers who value how their food choices impact the environment.
  • Tooley’s Trees (Truchas, NM): Tooley's Trees is a family-run, ten-acre tree nursery owned and operated by Gordon Tooley and Margaret Yancey. They grow drought tolerant fruit and conifer trees and shrubs in fabric root bags, on drip irrigation, using holistic growing practices for healthier plants and soils, higher water quality, and increased beneficial insects. 
  • Cobblestone Ranch (Los Molinos, CA): The Cobblestone Ranch is a sheep operation based on private property and on federal wildlife refuge lands. Breanna Owens uses rotational grazing with the overall goal of maintaining and enhancing wildlife habitat and specific goals of reducing thatch, shrub and weed control, and stimulating new herbaceous growth.
  • Vilicus Farms (Havre, MT): Vilicus Farms is a first generation, nationally recognized organic, dryland crop farm. Anna and Doug grow a diverse array of heirloom and specialty grains, pulse, oilseed and broadleaf crops with advanced land stewardship at a scale that matters.
APPRENTICESHIPS
New Agrarian Program apprentices do not always come from an agricultural background, but they are all committed to regenerative land stewardship and sustainable practices. Our rancher and farmer mentors expect a lot of themselves and thus a lot out of their apprentices. Entering agriculture is not easy and developing a vision for yourself and your operation is imperative to success.
These apprenticeships are full-time, intensive education & professional training opportunities, 50-60 hours a week, sometimes more and sometimes less. One of the joys as well as the challenges of agriculture is living and working with the rhythm of the seasons, and the work schedule follows the demands of season, weather, plant and animal needs. The New Agrarian Program seeks applicants with a sincere commitment to lives and careers in regenerative agriculture, enough experience to know what it takes to work on the land, and an excellent work ethic. Applicants must be highly motivated self-starters, and have the ability to work independently; be prepared to work long days outside in variable conditions; be solid problem solvers; and embrace diversity and teamwork. The selected applicants will be mature individuals, excited to engage in their own learning process.
COMPENSATION
Compensation includes a monthly stipend, housing, partial board, enrollment in a Holistic Management International beginning rancher/farmer webinar ($1000 value), and participation in various Quivira Coalition events.
TO APPLY Each opportunity offered through the New Agrarian Program is unique. To learn more about each apprenticeship and to apply online, visit the New Agrarian Program at www.quiviracoalition.org.  Applications require a resume, professional references, and responses to a series of questions. Application deadlines as early as November 20, 2016.
CONTACT Please find detailed information for each opportunity listed above on the Quivira Coalition website: www.quiviracoalition.org. If you have further questions, email Virginie@quiviracoalition.org.  
+++ Landowners, find a farmer to cultivate your place!  We are often approached by farmland owners looking for farmers to manage their land, start a farm, work as staff, or run an independent business on leased land. This is a key are for beginning farmers to find opportunity, especially at the start of their careers as they build skills and the capital and experience needed to gain long-term, sustainable access to land. For farmland owners who do not farm, but seek to partner with farmers as:

  • Paid farm managers (usually on an annual basis, including housing)
  • Leasees to run their own business (usually on a multi-year lease, sometimes with housing, usually with barns and a certain amount of infrastructure already in place)

we have created a list of places for farmland owners to post their opportunities, as wel as some useful resources for becoming a ‘literate, proactive, and benign’ landowner (which we hope is your goal as well!). Agriculture takes time. It is based on relationships; on observation and interventions; on instinct and care. It is a delicate and lovely and worthy or consideration and respect. It is also full of drama, heartbreak, and financial stress. To succeed, we suggest you spend the time ahead of the game to fully define your holistic goals.   Here’s a list of important places and regional networks to get you started: NATIONAL The Greenhorns jobs list Good Food Jobs National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service Organic Volunteers WWOOF USA Orion Grassroots jobs listing Biodynamic Farming and Gardening Association National American Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program Small Farmers Journal (a quarterly publication with a classifieds section) Holistic Management International COMFOOD listserv, Tufts University Land Stewardship Project EAST NEW ENGLAND Land for Good NEW YORK NOFA-NY Columbia County Land Conservancy Landowner Matching Program PENNSYLVANIA PASA MAINE MOFGA Midwest MOSES WEST High Country News jobs board Ranch World Ads OREGON iFarm (a project of Friends of Family Farmers) Ten Rivers Food Web Oregon Tilth Rogue Farm Corps CALIFORNIA CASFS (Santa Cruz apprenticeship program) California Farmlink NEW MEXICO Quivira Coalition New Agrarian apprenticeship programApprentice Link WEST NORTH CAROLINA (also a great resource for aspiring farmers to find apprenticeships!) +++