Gardening the Community

Duration: approx. 30hrs a week for 3 months, Summer 2015

Location: Springfield, Massachusetts

Housing: Housing is not provided. Student is responsible for finding housing.

For more information: Gardening the Community

A strong interest in food justice, urban agriculture, and sustainable living. Awareness of social justice issues as they relate to youth of color here in New England.  Traditional farm or urban agriculture experience is not a requirement, however openness to engaging with the land in a hands on way would be required. Additionally interns would participate in varied tasks of the program, up to and including: doing outreach, database management, or specific social network marketing. Any experience being in a leadership or supervisory role would be a plus.

Funding: $3000, Available through the Miller Worley Center dispensed through the MHC UAF System.

How to Apply: Students must apply to this position through Lyon Net by midnight February 19th.  Students must submit a cover letter describing their interests, experiences, and how this internship fits their career interest, a resume and letter of reference/recommendation. These documents can be uploaded to Lyon Net.

(Recommendation letters should be emailed directly to Danielle Van Over )


Gardening the Community is a food justice organization engaged in youth development, urban agriculture and sustainable living to build healthy and equitable communities. Founded in 2002 as a project of NOFA (Northeast Organic Farming Association),  GTC has developed from a 2 staff summer only program for youth in Mason Square to a staff of 5 running year round. We are the first program in the city of Springfield to own land utilized strictly for urban agriculture.
Our program focuses on the following:  

Local Food Production

GTC grows thousands of pounds of produce on once dilapidated parcels of city and privately held land. We sell our produce at the Mason Square Farmers Market, a Mobile Market, and our own farm stand. 

We also run a CSA program with our partner farm, the Next Barn Over (Hadley, MA) called GTC EATS!.  This program provides a weekly assortment of fresh local food to neighborhood residents on a sliding scale, and aims to increase access to healthy, affordable produce in what has been described as a food desert by many health and government officials.  Interns working with us will assist in managing, developing and evaluating the program, and will work with GTC youth and staff to keep the program on good standing throughout the summer.

Conservation As Sustainable Living

In an effort to increase water conservation and sustainability, GTC integrates perennial food-producing plants into garden systems and employ rain gardens that also work to prevent erosion.  Almost all of the produce grown by GTC is transported by bicycle, reducing air pollution and promoting healthy lifestyle choices.  Rain collection methods are utilized to reduce dependence on city water supply, and to practice low-input farming.  The organization institutes different levels of alternative growing practices within its program that encourage gardening without the use of chemicals, pesticides, or fossil fuel-powered machinery.