Apprentice at Shakefork Community Farm

Every season we welcome apprentices to live, work, and learn with us on our farm.

We are currently seeking qualified applicants for a unique farm apprenticeship.  

Internship Starts: Sunday April 1st, 2018

Internship Ends: Sunday December 2nd, 2018

Number of Interns: 5

App Deadline: Ongoing, until we find the right team.

Minimum Length of Stay: Full season commitment (35 weeks) preferred; half season (20 week) possible.

To Apply: Please e-mail with a brief introduction to request an application. We require a completed application, resume, and at least one professional reference.

Picking peas in the spring. 

Apprenticeship Description: Our program is a hands-on, intensive training for future farmers, regenerative land stewards, and aspiring land-based entrepreneurs. We work closely with our oxen teams in every season and offer serious experience in draft power on a diversified farmstead. A full season commitment of 35 weeks will give you the most bang for your buck (so to speak; we'll be paying YOU!), but shorter commitments of 20 weeks are also possible. Applicants considering a shorter apprenticeship must be willing to camp for some of the mid-summer weeks. All apprentices can expect to work an average of 50 hours a week - less in April & November, more in the high summer months - and learn about every aspect of our diversified farm throughout the season. We are incredibly transparent about our farming journey and all aspects of our business and are eager to share what we’ve learned with you. Previous farm experience is helpful but not essential. You must be able to lift at least 50 lbs., if not more. Highlights of the early season include managing spring pastures with planned grazing rotations, crop planting, and broiler processing, equipment maintenace, and salvage logging with the oxen. Highlights of the fall season include storage crop harvesting, turkey and broiler processing, strawberry, garlic and cover crop planting. All apprentices will become skillful in a wide range of livestock care, learn basic teamster skills, gain meaningful skills and training in many garden tasks, and be exposed to the core business principles and practices that make for a successful farm.  

Educational Opportunities:  The work at Shakefork Community Farm is incredibly diverse, and you can expect daily tasks to vary considerably from day to day and week to week throughout the season. Lively lunchtime discussions cover a range of topics, from the philosophical to the practical. Opportunities for group readings and outings to other area farms are available and encouraged, depending on the groups’ interests.  

Work Experience / Skills Desired: Apprentices must enjoy good hard work, take initiative, be reliable and responsible, and follow directions. Our standards are high and an innate attention to detail and organizational talent are essential and appreciated. We are looking for committed individuals highly motivated to hustle and work efficiently, both by themselves and as part of a team. Come eager to learn and work, to stretch and be challenged. Be prepared to move through the workday with a sense of urgency, while also taking time to enjoy good food and be nourished by a life lived close to the land.  Apprentices must be clean and healthy, with no drugs, no pets, no ear buds, and most importantly, no attitudes. We do not allow smoking - tobacco or cannabis - on the farm.  We prioritize applicants who have already received some basic agricultural training and those who are able to visit the farm before committing to a full season with us. However, all applicants will be considered.  

Meals: We eat primarily from the foods that we grow on the farm and provide for almost all of our own meat, vegetable, dairy and fat needs. We encourage apprentices to do the same and truly embrace what it means to eat seasonally off the fat of the land. We share a hearty farm lunch Mondays through Fridays and apprentices participate in our communal lunch rotation, cooking for a group that often includes volunteers, employees, and visitors. Apprentices prepare their own breakfasts and dinners. Your enthusiasm for the kitchen arts and good food will serve you well here. The enjoyment of food is central to our vision of a sustainable farm life, so we make time to prepare good food, by hand, fresh from the farm, three meals a day. Apprentices are encouraged to use their cooking time to develop skills working with farm-based, nutrient-dense ingredients. We seasonally make kraut, pickles, stocks, sausage, jerky, bacon, butter and ghee, among other things. We are a Paleo friendly, mostly gluten-free farm, and cannot accommodate vegetarians or vegans.

Shakefork apprentices in the pasture.

Stipend: Apprentices receive a $100 weekly stipend to start, at the successful completion of the 2nd week. In addition, apprentices receive full room and board (use of laundry facilities, landline, etc). Increases to the stipend are possible for committed apprentices showing aptitude and ability. We purchase ingredients not grown on the farm at our local Co-op or from other local farmers. Non-staples and processed foods must be purchased independently. 

Housing: Apprentices each have their own 200 sq. ft. yome (a cross between a yurt and a dome – see or our website for details) for sleeping and personal space. Although aesthetically pleasing and quite structurally solid, the walls are tent-like and un-insulated. Solar power feeds one light and one car-charger type outlet per yome. We provide basic furnishings and a mattress or futon. We also recently added a tiny cabin that is a little smaller but fully insulated with a wood stove. An outdoor communal kitchen space is equipped with a commercial sink, gas range, and fridge & freezer, as well as all the basic kitchen stuff – cast iron pots, stainless steel pans, baking pans, food processor, plates, bowls, knives, etc.  Expect clean, simple, and rustic.  Other amenities include a composting toilet, nice outdoor shower, laundry facilities, and satellite Internet (no video, TV, or streaming). Cell phone reception is spotty, but we have a landline for daytime use. A personal vehicle is a definite plus, and we strongly encourage all apprentices to bring a vehicle of their own. Our highway is not safe for biking.

Preferred method Of Contact: Email

Shakefork apprentices learn essential slaughter skills.

Apprentices learn to work our oxen.