Assistant to the Sterling College Farm Manager
Sterling College is the leading voice in higher education for environmental stewardship. Sterling maintains a produce and livestock operation on 130 acres of mixed pasture, gardens, and woodlot. These educational operations also provide a significant portion of Sterling College meals, and nearly all of the farm’s lumber needs. Students are integrated into the farm through coursework, the Work College program, and generally being a part of the Sterling College community. Students complete daily chores, conduct research, perform experiments, and receive hands-on experience growing crops, managing livestock, working with draft animals, and stewarding the College’s woodlot.
“The Sterling College Sustainable Agriculture program provides students with the tools to become stewards of the land while managing a productive place-based agroecosystem. Students utilize systems thinking as a guiding principle coupled with the application of ecologically sound practices.”
An integral part of the Sterling College community, the Sterling Farm serves a threefold purpose:
- To demonstrate a range of techniques used in sustainable, agroecological production systems;
- To foster a working laboratory for academic inquiry; and
- To provide nourishing food for its campus community.
The daily management of the farm is shared among the Farm Manager, and two Assistants, and a team of student employees. Each of the Assistant Managers carry responsibilities according to their own skill-set, and work collaboratively under the supervision of the Sterling Farm Manager, with the support of the Sterling College Sustainable Agriculture Instructional Team.
We are currently seeking an Assistant Manager to take primary responsibility for livestock production. This is a full-time, 40 hr/wk, salaried position. Though work hours will primarily be completed Mon-Fri, weekend work will be required on a rotating basis. This Assistant Farm Manager position includes housing.
Duties and Expectations:
With training and mentoring from the Farm Manager, the Assistant Farm Manager is responsible for the following:
- Work with a team of student employees. She or he is responsible for supervising work crews and creating an educationally stimulating work setting, to facilitate completion of all farm management tasks.
- Coordinate with the faculty and staff to ensure the Sterling curriculum, and kitchen are well supported throughout the seasons. The Assistant Manager interacts with classes, helps supervise land management by students involved in independent studies, and ensures availability of land resources for research and other academic uses.
- Help manage production, coordinate harvests, manage infrastructure, maintain the farm landscape in an organized and aesthetically pleasing manner, and work directly with the Sterling kitchen to facilitate order placement and fulfillment.
- Act as the voice of the Sterling Farm, through community announcements and awarenesses, periodic on-farm events, and presentations to prospective students, community members and other visitors to the College. This requires public speaking, informal presentations, garden tours, and attendance at agricultural events, both on- and off-campus.
- Develop management protocols and keep records to track production and profitability.
- Collaborate with the Farm Manager and other Assistant Manager in all areas of the farm as the need arises.
Applicants should have 1-2 seasons of experience farming in a production or educational setting; teaching experience, preferably in a small-scale farm environment; a demonstrated ability to work independently and as a part of a team. Management experience on a diverse farm or a similar system is preferred, and the completion a B.A. or B.S. program in an appropriate field by the start date of the hire is required.
The Sterling Sustainable Agriculture Assistant Manager position is a 12-month renewable position that includes a salary of $15,750; on-campus housing & meals; a professional development stipend of $300 to be used on your choice of workshops, conferences, or classes; and eligibility to enroll in Sterling College full-time employee benefits. There are two Assistant Manager positions and at least one of the two positions is required to live on campus. Being an integral part of the campus community is a key aspect of this position, therefore it is expected that you will maintain exemplary personal and professional boundaries.
The position’s start date is October 1st and the College will begin to review applications immediately. Applicants should include a résumé, a cover letter describing your interest in the position and three references sent to Gwyneth Harris, Sterling College Farm Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Employment at Sterling is contingent on the verification of background information provided by the applicant.