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Help: What should I put on Farming Apprenticeship Resume and Cover Letter

Jared Gardener


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 40
Hello,
As a recent graduate, I am now hoping to apprentice on an organic farm in Southeastern Pennsylvania. I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations as to what to put on my résumé and cover letter when applying for these positions.

My degree from Penn State University is in Secondary Education Social Studies and so I plan to highlight my education experience, environmental education work, environmental activism, community organizing, skill-sharing, as well as my volunteer work with kids and special needs individuals. Despite my passion for environmental issues and activism, at this point in time I do not have much experience with growing food (only a year of organic polyculture gardening and a few hours volunteering on a local farm) so I was wondering if I should even mention this limited experience. What would a farmer look for when hiring an apprentice?

Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
zym.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
This is just from reading about farmers and how much trouble they have with hired help: More than anything else, a farmer wants someone who will stick with the job and not leave. Someone who is reliable and won't flake or lose interest. So anything you have to prove you can stick with a project to completion would be of value, in my opinion.


Idle dreamer

Josh T-Hansen


Joined: Jul 14, 2010
Posts: 143
Location: Zone 5 Brimfield, MA
    
    1
Don't worry about it. Keep it simple because farmers may not want to spend a lot of time around someone who is obsessive over unnecessary details. If anything you're overqualified. But this depends on the job; show you can go with the flow. This is different than a normal workplace, therefore send a picture of yourself. goodluck, and analyze the farm's resume at least as much as your own.


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Gord Welch


Joined: Sep 25, 2010
Posts: 64
Location: Oregon
I agree.... with the above posts.... and add... be honest!
Fred Morgan
steward

Joined: Sep 29, 2009
Posts: 972
Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
    
  12
As a person who has seen a lot of Interns come in (not at our place, but an indigenous community) and have had a few interns, this would be what would appeal to me.

1. Early riser who is eager to get started.

2. No vices. What you do on your own time is your business, when you can't work well because of what you did on your own time, is now my business.

3. Do you realize that though you are a volunteer you will be expected to work just as hard as anyone else? Otherwise, it effects the moral of the people. As an intern, you are paying to learn, still. Your production won't be much, but your effort needs to be up there.

4. What kind of condition are you in? Do you need to start off slow? If so, say that. If you are a cyclist, or hike every weekend, or work all day on cleanups, etc, this is important.

All of this is more important to me than education if you are volunteering to work on a farm, unless of course your training is specific to the farm itself.


Sustainable Plantations and Agroforestry in Costa Rica
Jared Gardener


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 40
Fred Morgan wrote:
4. What kind of condition are you in? Do you need to start off slow? If so, say that. If you are a cyclist, or hike every weekend, or work all day on cleanups, etc, this is important.


Well I do have chronic lyme disease although I do not believe it will affect my performance, as I have been able to complete both physically and mentally stressful tasks over the past years. Is this something I should include, and if so, how?
Ken Peavey
steward

Joined: Dec 21, 2009
Posts: 2202
Location: FL
    
  58
What are you looking for? It is far better to be overlooked for a placement you would not like than to accept one that is not what you want. Be clear about what you expect and bring to the table.

Seed the Mind, Harvest Ideas.
http://farmwhisperer.com
Fred Morgan
steward

Joined: Sep 29, 2009
Posts: 972
Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
    
  12
Fermenter Zym wrote:
Fred Morgan wrote:
4. What kind of condition are you in? Do you need to start off slow? If so, say that. If you are a cyclist, or hike every weekend, or work all day on cleanups, etc, this is important.


Well I do have chronic lyme disease although I do not believe it will affect my performance, as I have been able to complete both physically and mentally stressful tasks over the past years. Is this something I should include, and if so, how?


How is your recovery time? I know myself I can do almost anything for two days, but for six days? Well, I have to admit I am not as young as I once was - and too much time in offices. I am very fit, but I need more time to rest.

If the chronic lyme disease requires certain concessions by others, you should note it, if not, it isn't an issue.

The issue is, make sure that you say what you want to do and can do, or when you show up, both of you might be disappointed.

I agree as well with Ken, know what you are aiming at - it is always more appealing to have someone who comes saying "I can do the following, and want to learn the following".
Pete Adams


Joined: Mar 04, 2012
Posts: 4
Namaste Jared

Did you secure a position?

If not, perhaps we can help each other. i and my partner Dr. Pedro Puhma Rios have knowledge & experience in healing chronic disease. We are also looking for volunteers at our Healing & Organic Farming Community in Mexico. More details here: http://www.moving-overseas-guide.com/make-me-heal.html

Peace & Love
pete
http://a-plan-for-peace.com
Jared Gardener


Joined: Dec 06, 2010
Posts: 40
Pete Adams wrote:Namaste Jared

Did you secure a position?

If not, perhaps we can help each other. i and my partner Dr. Pedro Puhma Rios have knowledge & experience in healing chronic disease. We are also looking for volunteers at our Healing & Organic Farming Community in Mexico. More details here: http://www.moving-overseas-guide.com/make-me-heal.html

Peace & Love
pete
http://a-plan-for-peace.com


Hi Pete,
Thank you for your offer. I actually do have another position that begins in April. Perhaps I could volunteer in the future. I will certainly explore your web site.

Best wishes,
jared
 
 
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