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Applications open for new farmers, ranchers internship program

On the left, Isabella Schultz, 2023 intern. (University of Wyoming Extension)

LARAMIE, Wyo. — The GrowinG Internship Program is now accepting applications for 2024.

“The goal of this program is to provide interns with a hands-on internship at a working farm or ranch in Wyoming, in cooperation with state producer organizations and educational institutions,” said Kendra Faucett, program coordinator.

The program provides a $5,000 stipend for a 10-week work experience, which is made possible by funding through the USDA Beginning Farmers and Ranchers grant, a news release states. Eligible applicants are 18 years or older, identify as ready to begin farming or ranching and have been involved in managing their own farm or ranch enterprise for less than 10 years.

Selected interns will spend 10 weeks on a host farm or ranch, learning and assisting with daily activities. Accepted candidates will work with the site host to establish start and end dates. During their internship, interns will also take part in at least one agricultural educational event, such as a Wyoming Agricultural Experiment Station field day.

Selected hosts provide room and board while working with the intern to provide safe and educational learning experiences, keeping in mind their learning objectives where possible.

“Short work summaries submitted weekly help the intern reflect on day-to-day work and educational experiences throughout the internship,” said Ben Rashford, one of the project co-directors.

GrowinG interns who are also degree-seeking students are encouraged to seek academic credit for participating in the GrowinG Internship Program. Academic credit must be arranged in advance between the student and an academic advisor with the student’s educational institution.

Olivia Halter, a 2023 intern, has spoken about the value of her own experience in the GrowinG program: “It wasn’t just talking to so many people, people I never would have seen, but it gave me a jumpstart into what I knew I wanted to do.”

“We encourage interested interns and potential hosts to apply by February 2, 2024,” said John Hewlett, project co-director. “A state committee will help select candidates and match interns with host sites, beginning in mid-February.”

Online application forms for 2024 hosts and interns are available at GrowinG-WY.org. For more information, contact the GrowinG Internship Program at coordinator@growing-wy.org or by visiting GrowinG-WY.org.