Mount Vernon Brief: Arcadia Program Seeks Applicants

Mount Vernon Brief: Arcadia Program Seeks Applicants

The Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food and Agriculture is a nonprofit organization based on Woodlawn Estate operating a farm, mobile market, food hub and farm-to-school programs.

On Nov. 6, Arcadia executive director Pamela Hess announced another initiative — a farmer training program for veterans — is now accepting applications.

Beginning in January 2016, the tuition-based “reserve” program would bring together ten members one weekend each month for an entire year to learn cultivation skills and how to successfully operate a farm as a business.

They would work an additional full weekend during the growing season on Arcadia Farm.

A mixture of classroom lessons, guest lecturers, practical work on existing farms and other instruction is intended to help prospective veteran farmers prepare to start their own growing business.

“We face a crisis in agriculture: The USDA estimates that the nation needs 100,000 new farmers over the next decade to replace the aging population of farmers,” Hess said in a statement.

“Veterans are among the rare demographic with the grit, leadership and entrepreneurial skills to succeed in the challenging but meaningful work of farming. With the right training and opportunity, our nation's veterans are going to ride to our rescue yet again.”

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