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UM Biological Station Community Garden Steward

We are looking for a student to manage the UMBS community garden for the 2015 season. This is a great opportunity for a student who wishes to take one summer-term 5-credit course at UMBS and serve as the manager the garden project from the beginning of May until the end of the summer term (Aug. 22).  The goal will be to educate the UMBS community about organic farming practices and to provide supplemental produce for the dining hall.  We are planning for three garden sections:

1) food production

2) ethnobotanical (led by the spring term Ethnobotany courses)

3) experimental

The Garden Steward will work directly with Karie Slavik, UMBS Associate Director, to develop a plan for the garden, order supplies, prepare the site, plant, maintain, and harvest the garden. The Garden Steward will also lead and coordinate the work with volunteers as well as help to organize educational activities for the UMBS community throughout the season. Compensation includes room and board at the station and $9/hour for a 20 hour work week during the summer term (40/week in May and early June). In addition, as a student you will be eligible to apply for merit and need-based scholarships and financial aid to help cover your tuition through the UMBS course application process. Candidates should have experience with farming or large gardens and a strong interest in organic and sustainable agriculture. To apply, send a resume and letter of interest to Karie Slavik at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by March 21st.

Seeley Farm, Ann Arbor - Crew Members

Seeley Farm
2015 Crew Positions Available
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
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Seeley Farm is hiring full time crew members for the 2015 growing season. The farm is located 4 miles north of downtown Ann Arbor, MI. It is a 5 acre certified organic vegetable and cut flower farm in its 5th year of operation. The farm sells its produce at two local farmers markets twice weekly, area grocery and natural foods stores, and local restaurant chefs. 

Seeley Farm is run by owners Mark and Alex, husband and wife, as well as a crew of 3 full time workers are 3-4 part time workers. The weekly schedule is Mon-Fri 7 a.m to 4 p.m with a one-hour, unpaid lunch. Crew members may also do the occasional Saturday market shift from 6 a.m to 11 a.m, on a rotating basis. Employment is from early April through November. We have a strong preference for candidates who can commit to the whole season, however we are willing to consider applicants who can only commit to a partial season.

Crew members perform most tasks on the farm from seeding, transplanting, weeding/hoeing, harvesting, washing, packing, and marketing. Previous farming experience is preferable but not required. All candidate must be comfortable working outdoors in all kinds of weather. The farm does not offer on-site housing or shared meals. However, the farm owners are willing to help potential candidates secure affordable housing in the area. 

Hourly wage is $9-$13/hour, depending on experience. Crew members are also welcome to take excess produce home for their own use. Seeley Farm is well connected to other organic farms in the region. Those wishing to broaden their farm knowledge horizons will have ample opportunity to explore what other local growers are doing. 

Tropical Agriculture & Socio-Environmental Research Assistant - Ann Arbor, MI

A position is open to assist in a socio-environmental research project. The position involves aerial image interpretation using Google Earth ® and ArcGIS software (Esri). The project is part of a larger Ph. D. thesis that combines qualitative and quantitative research methods to understand farmer's perceptions on tree management. You will gain experience in socio-environmental research and interact with a larger research group led by Professor John Vandermeer in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department. 

If you are a student interested in this assistant position, or have any questions regarding the position, please contact Mariana Valencia at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Farmhand - 9 Bean Rows Farm, Suttons Bay, MI

9 Bean Rows ­Farm

9000 E. Duck Lake Road

Suttons Bay, MI 49682

Contact(s): Charles Defever (Farm Manager); Nic Welty (Owner)

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone: 231­271­6658

Website: and on Facebook

General Description: 9 Bean Rows is a diverse food business located in Suttons Bay, Michigan. A farm, bakery and restaurant help accomplish the company’s mission of increasing the availability of locally grown and handcrafted artisan foods year round. The farm produces a wide variety of seasonal vegetable crops for distribution to CSA members, farmers’ markets, farm­to­school, and the restaurant. The farm is in the process of becoming certified organic and has always used sustainable practices, emphasizing no­till management of the soil and season extension techniques.

Position: Farmhand

Brief Position Description: A small team of Farmhands are guided by the Farm Manager to execute daily tasks and achieve weekly goals related to vegetable production. Farmhands assist in preparing seedbeds, planting and seeding, managing weeds, making minor irrigation and hoophouse repairs, and harvesting. Farmhands are expected to listen carefully to detailed task instructions and understand the significance of the task to the overall farm, such that they may execute tasks with precision and care. Work may at times be physically strenuous and/or performed in undesirable weather; a worker with good physical health and a steady, positive attitude will perform well in this work environment. This position is appropriate for individuals interested in food production, regular exercise in the outdoors and the aesthetic of clean fields and beautiful produce. The Farm Manager will work with the Farmhand to achieve any personal learning goals for the season, to satisfy internship requirements and/or for personal growth.

Desired Qualifications:

Previous farming or gardening experience, good physical health, able to lift 50 lbs and work a 10­ hour day, attention to detail, pride in the quality of one’s work, ability to clearly communicate

Compensation: $8.50­10/hr, based on experience. Limited bread and vegetables. Potential housing.

When: Farmhands are most needed during the traditional growing season, from April to November. However, this is flexible; for example, we understand students will need to return to fall classes in late August. A full­time commitment of several months is desired. The standard work week will be consistent, with four ten-hour days.

To apply: Email a cover letter describing your interest in farming (both in general and specifically with 9 Bean Rows) along with a resumé to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Upon receiving the email, we will contact you for a preliminary telephone interview, at which time you are encouraged to ask further questions about the position. Applications are welcome ­ and positions may be filled ­ at any time, though applications submitted after March 6th cannot be guaranteed consideration for employment during the 2015 season.

Sustainable Food Systems Intern - Senna Prairie Farm, Ann Arbor, MI

About us:

Senna Prairie Farm began as one University of Michigan graduate’s effort to put family land to productive and ecological use. In May of 2012, two four-season hoop houses were erected in a green, rolling meadow off North Maple Road to an audience of wildlife and enthusiastic volunteers. Since then, the 41-acre property has been dedicated to sustainable, chemical-free food production and the preservation of native flora and fauna. Our wooded upland habitat and seasonal wetlands provide cover for a multitude of species, including sandhill cranes, wild turkeys, deer, quail and threatened amphibians.

Our passive solar hoop houses allow us to grow fresh vegetables throughout the winter months, relying on only the sun’s energy to keep our greens growing. We operate a small CSA, participate in farmers’ markets, and cater to local farm-to-table restaurants.

Responsibilities and on-site training:

  • Hands-on farm tasks such as tilling, planting, weeding, harvesting and packing. You will learn to prepare seedbeds, build a crop plan, transplant seedlings, identify ideal harvesting conditions and prepare produce from field to market.
  • Farm-to-table marketing. You’ll have the opportunity to interact with friendly farm customers and educate the public at a farmers’ market.
  • The economics of sustainable farming. We maintain transparent accounts of seasonal expenses and gross yield numbers. We will be implementing a controlled seasonal business plan and measuring its effectiveness. Net profits will be shared with interns.
  • The ecology of agriculture. In addition to growing vegetables, we will be propagating native Michigan plant species, conducting on-site biological studies, and learning environmentally-friendly pest control methods.

You should bring:

  • Access to reliable transportation. We are located about five miles from campus.
  • Seasonal outdoor work clothes and rugged shoes or boots. We will be outside and getting dirty!
  • Water bottle and a snack.
  • A desire to learn about sustainable food systems and native ecology.


  • $8.15/hr, plus weekly produce and college credit (with prior arrangement through U of M internship or independent study). Expect to work 15-20 hours per week.

This opportunity is open to current students and recent graduates. Please contact Joe Varkle (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) and include your questions, goals and availability.

Sustainable Food Program | University of Michigan
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