Acorn Hill Farm Internship
*** We are currently putting a stronger emphasis on the creamery and cheesemaking in our internship***
Acorn Hill Farm is a small dairy goat farm with an on-site micro-creamery. The farm is located on the eastern slope of the Shawangunk Ridge in Ulster County, New York. Our Nubian goats browse the oak, wild roses, poison ivy, and golden rod that grow on the slope. The few wild blueberries never had a chance with the goats and they will test the fences in the hope of reaching some on the other side. We manage the herd using organic methods and treat the goats with love and respect. Each doe knows her name and enjoys her job and they all love a good neck scratch from available humans.
The area has an enthusiastic locavore community along with numerous small farms, orchards, micro-breweries and wineries. Hiking, rock climbing, and skydiving, are popular activities in the Shawangunk Ridge area. We are located down slope from state forest land and a unique nature reserve with hiking, waterfalls, and alpine plants and dwarf pine growth along with abundant wild blueberries to forage. We are not isolated but are also not in walking distance to much and there is no mass transit. A college town is about 30 minutes away and we are 90 minutes northwest of NYC.
This year is our fourteenth year working with our herd of goats. Prior to owning goats the farm owner had an additional ten years of experience with dairy goats. Building the creamery and becoming a licensed cheese producer was a huge learning experience and accomplishment and we are happy to share how we made that journey with those with a genuine interest.
There are 2 Internships currently open which typically last six months so that interns can experience the full spectrum of activities from kidding to breeding season and the ups and downs of the milking season as well as how milk changes over the course of the season. We milk a portion of the herd year round so we are able to produce products continuously.
Interns – 2 Positions
Location: Walker Valley, New York
Time Commitment: Six months commitment is preferred but we are flexible if we feel a candidate fits the season’s situation. Start dates from February through early June for the summer season and August through Mid- November for winter season , 40+ hours/week in concert with farm family, employees, and other interns is required. The internship can lead to permanent position for the right candidate.
Compensation: Based on individual consideration
Housing: Apartment in our home (shared when multiple interns are here)
Application Deadline: Positions are open until filled.
- At least one full season farming experience necessary or experience with livestock in a family/4H setting.
- At least 18 years of age
- Strong, proven work ethic
- Clean driver’s license required and own vehicle preferred
- Strong Commitment to internship and learning experience
- Flexibility, patience, persistence, and a positive attitude
- Strong ability to understand detailed procedures and follow specific instructions
- Ability to work in all weather conditions with equal enthusiasm
- Interest in organic livestock management and gardening
The farm/creamery interns will help the farmer in all aspects of the creamery including learning pasteurization of milk and cheesemaking along with proper sanitation in both milking and cheese production, packaging cheese and preparing wholesale and CSA orders, preparing for and attending farmers markets , keeping updated records, help with making fudge and jams in our licensed kitchen. Interns are expected to learn quickly and perform work in a thorough and efficient manner. The work can be hard and some days will be long, interns will need to be team players in accomplishing daily tasks.
How to Apply
Application is by email. Please attach a copy of your current resume which includes your education and employment history, as well as three current references – two that can confirm your positive attitude, work ethic, and prior farming/livestock experience, and one that can confirm you are a respectful and clean housemate.
In your application email include:
- Why are you applying for this position?
- Please describe your personal and/or professional goals, and how this position is helpful or relevant. Please include some things about your relationship with large animals and your interest in organic farming.
- Is there any time during the internship period you would need to be away from the farm?
- What has prepared you for the hard work and attention to detail required for this internship?
Please apply as instructed by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have followed application instructions thoroughly and seem a good fit for the farm/creamery we will schedule a skype or phone interview with you to discuss further details.