UC Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology accepting applications for 10-week Apprenticeship Program

February 24, 2022

Aspiring organic farmers and gardeners are invited to apply for the 2022 Apprenticeship Program run by the Center for Agroecology at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC). The 10-week program will be offered in summer (June 13 to August 19) and fall (September 12 to November 18) of 2022. Application deadlines are March 28, 2022 for the summer program and May 9, 2022 for the fall program. Scholarship support at different levels is available.

Following a two-year Apprenticeship hiatus, UCSC will welcome apprentices back to campus this summer and fall for an immersive educational experience. The full-time residential programs take place at the 30-acre organic farm and 3-acre Alan Chadwick Garden on the UCSC campus. The Apprenticeship blends experiential learning with classroom studies to explore soil health and cultivation, plant physiology, and crop production and distribution, while considering the social and political contexts in which food is grown.

The Apprenticeship is open to participants 18 years or older of all educational backgrounds. Each cohort of 20 apprentices will live, eat, work, and learn together on-site, creating a community of practice connected with on-the-ground learning. Historically, the apprentices accepted into the program each year come from all regions of the U.S. and abroad, and represent a wide spectrum of ages, backgrounds and interests. (Please note for 2022 only U.S. residents will be eligible.) ​​Program graduates have established their own commercial farms and market gardens, developed farm- and garden-based educational programs, run urban garden programs, and more.

Significant scholarship funding opportunities that expand program access are made possible through grants and gifts. In 2022, candidates can apply for a General Scholarship, Simply Organic Scholarship, Matthew Raiford Scholarship for Veterans, and Food Equity and Justice Scholarship. Program fees cover housing in on-site tent cabins and shared group meals.

For examples of the Apprenticeship curriculum, see Teaching Organic Farming and Gardening: Resources for Instructors, and Teaching Direct Marketing and Small Farm Viability: Resources for Instructors. Both manuals are produced by the Center for Agroecology, and are available free online at agroecology.ucsc.edu/resources/publications.

Program information, application materials, and details on scholarship support are available online at agroecology.ucsc.edu/education/apprenticeship. For more information about the Apprenticeship, please contact the Center for Agroecology at agroecology@ucsc.edu. Learn more about the Center for Agroecology at agroecology.ucsc.edu.