Agroecology Internships

One Day in the Life of the Homeless Garden Project

    Beach Flats Community Garden

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    Garden Internship

    Contact Person: Michelle Glowa,

    In this internship students will work with the Beach Flats Community Garden in several capacities. The garden, which has flourished for over 21 years, is located in Santa Cruz in the historically Latino community of Beach Flats lying at the base of the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. It is a space of food production for local consumption contributing to food security and continuation of agroecological traditions and passing along of knowledges from gardeners who have immigrated from Mexico and El Salvador. In addition the garden provides .44 acres of green space in the most densely populated neighborhood of Santa Cruz. Currently the garden is under threat of having to move or complete eviction. Through interviews and participant observation, students will work with researchers to understand how the garden is perceived by the community, what gardeners and allies are doing to advocate for the garden, and how the city of Santa Cruz is trying to resolve this issue.

  • Bee Love Farm/Pacific Coast Apiaries

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    Bee Love Farm/Pacific Coast Apiaries


    Pacific Crest Apiaries/Bee Love Farm is a 60+ year-old family beekeeping business using natural, sustainable and chemical free agrarian practices located in Watsonville. Our beehives are located at our farm in Watsonville as well as at other 2 like-minded, certified organic, biodynamic farms and similarly stewarded private lands in Santa Cruz and Monterey County. Our family farm is a producer and purveyor of the finest local, raw, hand-pressed honey, bee pollen, artisan beeswax candles, pollination services, related wellness and lifestyle goods. Facilitating wellbeing for our honeybees, educational opportunities regarding sustainable environmental stewardship, community, loving-kindness and health are the pillars of our farm.

  • California Native Garden Foundation

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    Internship Opportunity

    The California Native Garden Foundation is a non-profit educational, research, and resource organization that promotes gardening with California native plants. Our goal is to increase the popularity and use of California’s native plants in the designed landscape. Our mission is to demonstrate the beauty, garden worthiness, and ecological appropriateness of California native gardens and to advance knowledge of native plants and increase their availability. We also emphasize on urban gardening, sustainable agriculture, sustainable land use, as well as social and food justice. Interns will assist in various tasks on site, which includes: 

    1. Nursery and garden tasks: Building native plant inventory through plant propagation, planting, and seed collecting. We may ask for some interns to help out with maintenance at gardens that we have designed or at projects that we are working on (which will include planting and seed collecting).

    2. Aquaponics: Maintaining the aquaponics system, planting crop plugs into the rafts, helping with growing produce for aquaponics, fish care.

    3. Grant writing: We are constantly writing grants to fund our non-profit and are always looking for students who are interested in the budgeting and funding aspects of environmental agencies.

  • Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS)

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    Listing also found in Campus tab

    Contact Person: Damian Parr 

    CASFS is offering a lower division production internship focused on field-scale harvesting and orchard care, as well as general market garden-scale cover cropping, bed tillage, composting, and propagation.  The internship will include a cohort of approximately 15 interns, working as a team. There is a possibility that interested students might be invited to continue interning in future quarters. We are most interested in students who can commit to two quarters of interning with us, during your time at UCSC, though the quarters interned do not need to be back-to-back. Each year, a number of paid student staff positions are available to graduates of our internship program.

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    Produce Pop-Up Internship

    Listing also found in Campus tab

    Contact Person(s): Margaret Bishop, or Nancy Yang,

    The Food Systems Working Group, anchored within the Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) is looking for two driven individuals to assist with our academic year organic Produce Pop-Up, which takes place once a week at the Quarry Plaza. In efforts to improve issues of food access and healthy food purchasing on campus, the Produce Pop-Up provides a space for students to purchase affordable produce sourced from the CASFS Farm and local Santa Cruz farmers’ markets.

    We are seeking applicants to work on outreach and collaboration efforts, budget and finance planning, and overall assistance in weekly preparation and operation of the Produce Pop-Up stand. Interns will gain valuable experience communicating with campus organizations, outreaching through social media and flyer design, and skills to maintain a reliable and functioning budget. 

  • Chadwick Garden

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    Chadwick Garden

    Contact Person: Damian Parr 

    The focus of this internship is learning ecological farming and gardening practices and principles.  Participants work side by side with Center staff and apprentices in hands on activities, and engage with curriculum from the apprenticeship in ecological horticulture. For more information please visit the website.

  • Christiansen Associates Garden and Design

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    Christiansen Associates Garden and Design Internship

    Contact: Kurt Christiansen (831)458-2005

    Christiansen Associates Gardens and Design is an organic landscape company located in the Swift St. Courtyard by Kelly's Bakery on the west side of Santa Cruz. We design, install and maintain gardens organically for people to live in and enjoy. We specialize in edible landscapes, Mediterranean-native plants, ponds and waterfalls, organic soil preparation and organic pest management. Check out the website

  • Epicenter Nursery and Fruit

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    Epicenter Nursery and Fruit Tree Internship

    Epicenter is an organic orchard that specializes in growing apples, pears, plums, and cherries.  The fruit varieties have been selected over a period of years for their ability to fruit well in our microclimate (very cold, high chill winters and a long warm summer and fall).  When harvested, the fruit is sold primarily to restaurants that appreciate highly flavored unusual fruit.  

    Interns working at Epicenter will work closely with the owner (Freddy) in the following projects:

    1. Weed and pest management – We will use tools and sheet mulches to control weed growth.  We will be hand pulling weeds also.

    2. Fertility management – We will apply composted manure to tree rows to improve fertility.

    3. Pruning – Interns will gain experience using shears to achieve improved tree shape and increase production of better quality fruit.

    4. Grafting – Most of this work will be done during the winter quarter. Interns will help re-graft fruit trees from one variety over to a more desirable type.

    5. Thinning – Interns will learn to limit a tree’s fruit production to  achieve more optimal balance between vegetative growth, fruit production, and fruit quality

  • Everett Family Farm

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    Everett Family Farm

    Contact Person: Emily Parsons   (802)-338-2034

    Welcome to Everett Family Farm! We appreciate your hard work and want to have clear policies so that everyone can understand each other and mutually benefit.

    Everett Family Farm is a 45 acre organic farm with approximately 5 acres in cultivation of  vegetables and the rest in apple and persimmon orchards.  Jobs that the interns will be doing are diverse, ranging from greenhouse production, field crop planting, weeding and harvesting, to building and repairing farm infrastructure, working with chickens and goats and marketing. Interns are often called upon to do different and sometimes tedious jobs in all kinds of weather. Be prepared for hard physical labor. Efficient production is critical to the success of the farm. Job training will be done by Emily Parsons. There is no formal curriculum and interns will be expected to take control of their own education, using David and anyone else on the farm as a resource. We are cooperatively minded and strive for a harmonious workplace. For more information, please check out Everett Family Farm's website

  • Fairytale Farm

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    Fairytale Farm Internship

    Contact: Debora Wade, 


    Fairytale Farm has been a small urban “farm” in the Lower Ocean area of Santa Cruz for 15 years. The two 50 X 50 square foot backyard plots have 13 fruit trees, a greenhouse, 1 bee hive, 4 chickens, and many perennial and annual vegetables. Fairytale Farm has taught classes on urban farming, such as food preservation, cooking, gardening, chicken rearing, and seed saving, as well as pop-up cafes, farm to table dinners, and art classes and garden tours. For the last 3 years, we have worked with UCSC students to maximize food crops, grow medicinal plants, and focus on low-water techniques.

  • Farm Discovery at Live Earth Farms

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    Contact: Hayley Reitman,

    Farm Discovery at Live Earth is a nonprofit organization working in the Pajaro Valley community to empower youth and families to build and sustain healthy food, farming, social and natural systems. Our home, Live Earth Farm, is a 150 acre patchwork of working organic farm, riparian corridor, oak and redwood forest in the Pajaro Valley of Santa Cruz County. Farm Discovery offers educational programs that inspire youth and families to transform their relationship to food, farming and nature. We are looking for interns that can help engage school aged children and lead them in our curriculum during farm experiences. During the Spring and Fall, we host a variety of educational programs approximately 3 times a week, with grades kindergarten-5th. Interns must be available in the morning. If interested in agroecology, field work is available in addition to becoming an educational farm docent.

  • Food Chain Radio

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    Listing also found in Public Policy tab

    Contact person: Michael Olson, email:, 831.566.4209

    Food Chain Radio, for those who are interested in environmental journalism, is a nationally-syndicated newstalk program that brings the issues of agriculture, food and environment to the table for discussion.  Having broadcast over 750 shows, the Food Chain has established a dedicated audience of interested listeners throughout the world. For more information please visit the website.

  • FoodWhat?!

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    Farm Based Youth Empowerment Program

    Contact Person: Irene O'Connell,

    "Food, What?!"- a youth empowerment and food justice program based at the UCSC Farm is seeking interns to document our Spring Teen Programs. As an intern you will have the opportunity to practice your documentation skills while observing farm-based education, organic farming and gardening, and youth empowerment practices. For more information check out the Food,What? website!

  • Global Student Embassy Santa Cruz

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    GSE Internship

    Listing also found in Environmental Education tab

    Contact person: Nick Coonrod, email: (831) 346-8044

    Global Student Embassy works in three global communities engaging local students in year-round environmental action and cultural exchange programs. Reciprocal exchanges connect our students’ sustainable garden and reforestation projects run in Nicaragua, Ecuador and Northern California, while organic school gardens serve as our outdoor classrooms to develop students’ environmental project management skills.

  • Groundswell Farm

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    Groundswell Farm

    Contact: James Cook (415)613-6975 or Andy,

    Groundswell Farm cultivates 5 organic acres a stones throw from UCSC and sells produce at the Wednesday Santa Cruz Farmers Market as well as other markets throughout the Bay Area. Groundswell Farm is a tiny production focused farm specializing in amazing tomatoes as well as a multitude of peppers and other seasonal produce. Interns will be expected to help grow food. The assignments include planting, weeding, fertilizing, as well as toher various maintenance tasks around the farm. Our systems are established and efficient, this a great opportunity to experience and learn how a small farm can succeed. Learn more about Groundswell Farm

  • Homeless Garden Project

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    Homeless Garden Project

    Contact Person: Keren Reichler              

    The Homeless Garden Project provides job training on a 2.5 acre organic farm and its enterprises, to homeless individuals in the Santa Cruz area.  We run a 60 member CSA (May through October) and have a retail store near downtown.  Interns are encouraged to set their own goals and create a project that will leave a lasting impression on the organization, with unlimited access to the knowledge of the farm workers and agency staff as well as other agencies we work closely with.  Tasks can include, but are not limited to: everyday farm maintenance activities – bed clearing, planting out, greenhouse propagation, irrigation, etc.; planning and teaching a workshop to crew and public participants; fundraising/grant writing; administrative assistance; cooking. For more information, please visit the Homeless Garden Project website

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    CSA Store Internship

    Contact: Keren Reichler

    We are seeking an enthusiastic and hard-working intern who will coordinate our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program in the Spring and Summer and support the operation of our value-added enterprise in the Fall and Winter seasons. This is a unique internship position that offers in-depth experience in a wide range of HGP’s programs and activities, providing an opportunity to strengthen diverse set of professional skills while developing meaningful relationships with staff, program participants and volunteers. 

    CSA members provide crucial support to HGP by committing to buying produce from HGP each week during the harvest season and paying in advance for the produce. Their commitment to sustainable agriculture and transitional jobs enhances HGP's planning and financial stability and creates a community of people who are deeply committed to HGP's success. In return, we seek to provide CSA members with quality and diverse organic produce, tips and recipes for using the produce and news and stories about the
    farm, trainees and our programs that enhance their community experience. This intern will act as the primary contact and form relationships with CSA members. The intern will also collaborate with staff to ensure the CSA is being considered in all aspects of the organization’s outreach, programming, etc.

  • Jacobs Farm

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    Integrated Pest Management Internship

    Contact Person: Saul Alba,

    The candidate does not need to be a college student or graduate.  A college student with an agriculture, environmental studies or ecology major is attractive because we could help him/her turn this project into an internship for college credit.  The experience could also be used to satisfy educational requirements for a PCA license should this person be interested in pursuing a career in crop protection. This project goes from February to October.  Hours are very flexible and we would need to discuss the candidate’s goals and availability before setting a schedule.  Most of the work would take place mid-morning to early afternoon.  Weekend work is an option.

    The intern’s time will be spent working under the supervision of the IPM Manager assisting with:

    -invertebrate and fungal pest monitoring

    -performing the necessary pest management activities

    -collecting, mapping, graphing and organizing all monitoring data and treatments

    -training other scouts in the monitoring program

    -assist with farmscaping projects

    -propagating companion plants

  • Santa Cruz Farmer's Market

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    SCCFM Internship

    Contact Person: Nesh Dhillon

    The SCCFM Internship positions require 6 – 10 hours of work per week. Interns will check in with market staff weekly while working at the farmers’ market and provide a brief, weekly, check in report via email regarding independent work. The focus of the internships is to learn the basic mechanics of running farmers’ markets and to support SCCFM’s educational and community outreach projects.  Interns will:

    1. Work with management to set-up, run and breakdown farmers’ markets with a focus on the Downtown Market (Wednesdays) and the possibility of supporting weekend markets on occasion.
    2. Learn about food access issues and run the CalFresh Program (EBT) at markets.
    3. Work on the website to alter and maintain up to date content, images and events.
    4. Assist with the organization and production of The Foodshed Project (FSP) educational event series.
    5. Work with teen staff from youth empowerment program “Food What?!”. This is specific to interns who work between June and September.
    6. Help with additional event planning and production including the Pop-Up Breakfast Series at the Westside and Scotts Valley markets.
    7. Contribute to the development and collection of evaluation measures and data.

  • Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard

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    Contact: Cole Thomas,

    Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard has been making hand-crafted wines since 1975. We source grapes from our estate vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountains and a few other locations around the central coast and central valley. Many of our grapes are grown organically with minimal offsite inputs and minimal water usage. We are looking for 1 intern for the fall quarter who would be able to start the internship prior to beginning of the fall quarter (i.e. asap). This is because grape season also titled “Vintage,” or “Harvest Season,” is upon us and a vast majority of experiential learning/ work will begin mid-August.

    As a fall intern at Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard, you will learn how grapes are crushed, destemmed and then fermented. You will learn how to inoculate grape ferments and learn how to manage the ferment as to produce the highest quality and quantity of wine. You will learn the chemical reactions occurring with yeast fermentation and why we utilize certain yeast and not others. You will learn how we manage barrel aging and Malolactic fermentation. You will learn how wine is moved from tanks to barrels and how we get it into its final bottled form. You will learn all of this by working side by side with the proprietor and winemaker, Jeff Emery and the assistant winemaker, Cole Thomas.

  • Stevenson Garden

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    Stevenson Garden Internship

    Contact Person: Blake Redding,, 831-459-2730

    The Stevenson Garden aims to create a safe space for all people to explore, grow, and learn as well as to educate our community about the role food systems play into sustainability, food justice, and nutrition. 

    The role of the intern will have two parts: 1. to assist the garden crew in general maintenance of the garden on a weekly basis: attend weekly workday hours, do independent garden shifts. 2. to independently facilitate a garden project that a) enhances the garden and b) educates community members on social justice and sustainability concepts: plant a strawberry bed & do a workshop on environmental justice issues in the strawberry industry.

  • Summer Meadows Farm

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    Summer Meadows Farm

    Contact Person: Lynn Selness  (831) 786-8966     Website: click for link to website

    We are hand milking and are looking for someone to help with morning milking.  We have great respect for the goats and try to preserve the herd’s integrity whenever reasonably possible.  We sacrifice our earning ability by keeping the kids with their moms for the first 5 weeks and then, only separate at night and milk mornings and return the kids to their moms for each day.  We keep barns clean and in good repair.  We spread manure on orchards and gardens. 

    We are fencing wooded sections and working on installing irrigation in the pastures for rotating pastures.  We’re trying to incorporate some gray water dispersal in some of these.

    As soon as we have enough milk, we are starting the spring goat shares with customers, organizing the deliveries, some are through Live Earth Farm’s CSA.  Then we will be making the cheeses, yogurt and kefir, bottling milk and packing orders.