EarthDance Seeks Freshman Farmers For 2012 Apprenticeships
From the basics (you plant a seed, something grows) to selling your harvest at the market, EarthDance's apprenticeship program will ground you (ha!) in basic farming techniques.
Now, this is no small commitment. The apprenticeship runs 35 weeks from February to November and involves classes (plant biology, pest and disease problems, composting and more) as well as field trips. And, yes, you'll get your hands dirty, studying for ten hours each week at Mueller Organic Farm in Ferguson.
"We grow a variety of crops ranging from vegetables, herbs and fruit. We respond to the things that the markets request and/or what the chefs want," says Rachel Levi, the farm and community education coordinator at EarthDance.
Levi adds, "We work with ten other farmers and agricultural agents and they are pretty open with sharing their knowledge."
Since the apprenticeship program began in 2009,
72 students, ranging from high-school students to 60-somethings, have completed the program. And the benefits they've enjoyed aren't just edible.
"I have known people who have found jobs out of participating in the apprenticeship," Levi says. "A couple of our graduates have gone into employment with our organization."
The apprenticeship welcomes all who apply. Tuition for the program is $750, and participants gain a share in the EarthDance CSA.