Ask Questions

by Jim Sluyter & Jo Meller
Some questions farmers ask prospective interns to find those who will work out best:
  • Why do you want to work on a horse-powered farm?
  • Have you had any previous experience of physical work?
  • Why do you want to be a farmer?
  • What horsemanship experience have you had?
  • What crop or gardening experience have you had?
  • Do you have any trade skills such as woodworking or metalworking?
  • What are your plans for when you finish the internship?
  • How will you incorporate your experience at our farm into your future plans?
  • What are your future goals in relation to the use of horse power?
  • Can you handle repetitive mundane chores and are you willing to
    work hard?
Some questions interns might ask a farmer before accepting an apprenticeship:
  • What kind of training do you offer?
  • What is your philosophy of teaching?
  • Describe the farm work schedule and how an intern fits in; what exactly is expected on a day-to-day basis?
  • Have past interns gone on to become farmers or farm managers?
  • May I contact some interns from previous years?
  • Ask about time off, if it is important to you.

rh horse logo
Jim Sluyter and Jo Meller wrote a 9-page report on internships from which the
above was adapted with permission in the Autumn 2000 issue of Rural Heritage.
The report is based on a survey conducted by the couple and funded by the Michigan Organic Food and Farm Alliance. The entire report is available free as an email attachment to visitors.

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