Agricultural Internship/Apprenticeship at Devon Point Farm, Woodstock, Connecticut, 2013
An Organic Vegetable & Flower CSA Farm Share Program & Grassfed Beef Cattle Farm
Our Internship Opportunity: Devon Point Farm offers an honest, accurate on-farm learning experience. For the right intern we provide a beautiful, clean, safe, healthy setting to work hard, play hard, and learn valuable real-life skills. You can get in great physical shape while learning all the basic components that you need to strategically plan, operate, promote and manage your own profitable, sustainable and rewarding farm business.
The work teaches about sustainable farming practices, economics of making a farm profitable, marketing, raising cattle, growing crops organically for profit, customer relations, and what it’s like to work hard for a healthy lifestyle and successful future.
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About Devon Point Farm: Devon Point Farm has a 200-member organic vegetable and flower share “CSA” share program, CSA stand for “Community Supported Agriculture” – a simple idea in which a CSA member buys a “share” of a farmer’s harvest at the beginning of growing season and then come to the farm on a weekly basis to pick it up. We also have a herd of rare heritage breed North Devon Cattle (commonly called American Milking Devons), which are sold for breeding stock and grassfed beef. The entire farm is farmed organically and we also raise heritage breed chickens for eggs and meat as well as pigs for pork.
Devon Point Farm is owned and Operated by Patty and Erick Taylor. The farm is located in Woodstock, Connecticut, an area is known for its rural countryside and classic New England setting. The farm is located 30 minutes from Worcester, 1 hour from Providence and Hartford, 1 1/2 hours from Boston and slightly over 3 hours from New York City.
The daily farm routine: The daily routine is Monday – Friday, up at 5:30 a.m. a hearty breakfast and then outside by 6:30 a.m. Saturdays are a lighter work day or possibly a farmers market day. On a daily basis, there’s routine chores like caring for chickens, moving cattle through rotational grazing pastures, and all the components of running the CSA like starting seeds, planting, weeding, harvesting, setting up produce displays for the share members, cutting flowers and making bouquets. We work 11-12 hour days, but if it’s hot and we’re caught up on our workload, we’re the first to suggest running off to a nearby pond for a swim, then finish up with any evening chores and a great meal.
Special learning components for apprentices: Apprentices get a special learning opportunity about all the “behind-the-scenes” aspects of farm business management – all aspects of running a profitable and sustainable farm business including but not limited to understanding the farm’s bookkeeping, financial planning and management, grant writing, and the holistic approach animal and crop production planning. Also cattle herd management, our breeding philosophy, grassfed beef production, marketing and processing, grazing rotation planning, as well as overall herd health management. Also all aspects of the business management of organic vegetable and flower farm operations will be shared including field crop planning, equipment and supply decisions, product marketing and promotion, customer relationship management, as well as day-to-day operations management.
Housing available: For the right apprentices, we have room and board available. We have a brand-new house with very nice accommodations – a big room upstairs with a great view of a pond frequented by ducks and geese and the cows grazing in the fields beyond. A private bathroom shared only with other interns. Your “off time” (typically Sundays) would be your own and we would encourage you to explore the area and can set up other farm visits to round out your experience. We also have a boat and like to go weekly to the ocean for fishing and beach time – interns would be welcome to join us on the boat or get dropped off on a beach or at a scenic coastal town like Mystic for a day of shopping and sightseeing.
Stipend: We do not pay interns for their work as this is a volunteer learning experience, but we do provide $200 per week for living expenses plus housing and all the food you can eat that we produce on the farm.
The right candidate: We are only looking for dedicated, honest, hard working, down-to-earth, positive, teachable, fun-loving, clean-cut appearance, non-smoking and English-speaking, applicants. Like any experience, you will get out of it what you put into it. Our season runs from April to October. Apprentice positions are for most or all of the season (April – October) and Intern positions are shorter in duration typically from 1 – 3 month positions (June-August). Limited transportation may be arranged. Length of stay is negotiable depending on the circumstances. Interviews are conducted in January, February and March.
To Apply: Interested applicants may e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief description of yourself, a resume, a photo of yourself, what interests you about our farm business, what you would like to get out of your stay, how long you would like to stay with us, your related experience/background/education.