Brain Breaker Farm Research Internship
Position: Brain Breaker Farm Research Intern
Location: Atelier Farm / Charlottesville, VA
Dates: April through October potential. Four-week trial to start, further to finish.
Contact : Austin Mandryk, austin [at] atelier . farm
Food & Housing: Farm food, as well as an off-grid solar shed with water, kitchen, bathtub, bed, and composting toilet. (Offered in exchange for 15 hours per week of scheduled farm help.)
Monetary Reimbursement: Unpaid.
Farm Description: Atelier Farm – vegetable, fruit, herb, and flower – grows biologically for a small-scale, year-round, free-choice CSA. We start our second year in 2018 wih five fenced acres – two acres in annual production, two acres in perennials. We are a one-farmer team at present, with the eventual aim of 2-2.5 farmers when the orchard comes online several years from now. Atelier is a production farm—it grows food for others in a profitable way—trying to remember the past and imagine the future of agriculture. We are nothing special, and we are not alone, but we’re here.
Internship Outline: The internship has two simple components: asking questions, and trying to answer them. If we do it right, the former—asking the question—is the way harder of the two. In fact, if all you achieve after weeks of work is a single good question, that’s a success we should celebrate. I bring experience to the table, but also preconceptions, patterns, subconscious dogma, and a stuffed schedule. You, at the very least, bring another vantage; and, I reckon, quite a bit more. I’m afraid to put a ring around our questioning, but for the moment we’re a farm trying to grow real food biologically for a local community; and that’s a good place to start. What is soil? What is the coevolutionary history of the homo sapien and food? How do we properly cycle nutrients, particularly human ‘waste?’ What’s this caterpillar eating my tomato, and where did it come from? Every day of farming yields new questions, most of which are mundane and quick to answer, but questions nonetheless. Your work would include these “lookups” as well. I take it as a given that some of your answers, and questions, might be more than words.
Library/Internet Access: Atelier Farm cannot provide internet access for this research, but there is a coffeeshop 15 minutes from the farm by car. The University of Virginia library is also 30 minutes from the farm, and the local public library is 15 minutes away.
Requirements: No farming experience required, just batteries. An open mind is a prerequisite, and idealists over ideologues a preference. Love of weather and the use of your body are a must. Vegeterianos and -anas welcome, phones not so much. Health Insurance required.
Last Notes: Please re-read the above, visit http://atelier.farm to learn about the farm, read the Teammate Manifesto on the farmers page – written for past and future apprentices, but applicable to interns – then send your Resume, Lover Cetter, and Questions to Austin (austin [at] atelier.farm), subject: “Am I doing this right?”