Q: Do you have internet connections?
A: We have wireless high-speed broadband…but our broadband width is limited…so we ask students not to suck up broadband by idle surfing, downloading, or Skype-ing your grandma in Tasmania. Doing your email is fine, as is farm related research. Local phone calls are free. A land line located in the Small Farm Training Center office is available for long distance calling.
Q: How much work will I be expected to do?
A: It depends on your stamina. We generally work in teams of 2 or 3 on a specific farming task, e.g. preparing and planting a ¼ acre of cabbages in a day. Once you get in-the-groove, your endurance will improve but we don’t push people beyond their physical limits. Generally, we meet as a team immediately after breakfast. Most apprentices can accomplish a 35-40 hour work week with ease. Some weeks we have more intense schedules due to weather and special projects but there’s plenty of down time to make up for the extra efforts.
Q: Can I just drop-in to look your place over?
A: Yes, you can drop by but better to let us know you’re coming first so we can plan our work day around your anticipated arrival. Because we are a demonstration site for sustainable farming and gardening, we welcome self-directed tours of our growing sites. We also honor requests for guide tours, generally well in advance.
Q: Can I bring my dog along?
A: No! Leave Fido at home or make arrangements for the dog to be cared for before coming. Under very special circumstances we make exceptions to this rule if the dog is especially well trained and good at chasing down varmints and other garden pests. Contact us first. We’ll discuss the possibility.
Q: As an apprentice, how much freedom do I have to for decision making?
A: As your level of competency increases, we’re especially inclined to assign you to a project that is mostly your responsibility. In the beginning, however, we expect to see a genuine mood of cooperation and team player attitude.
Q: Can I get college credit for participating in an apprenticeship/internship program?
A: Yes, several apprentices have received college credit. It depends on your college. We’ve enjoyed a long standing working relationship with several colleges in the region.