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Earn while you learn

Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship is a national apprenticeship registered with the U.S. Department of Labor-Employment and Training Administration. Apprentices are engaged in full-time, paid employment while they are comprehensively trained in all aspects of running a grazing dairy operation.

The program provides a career pathway for aspiring dairy farmers, managers, and entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds with different levels of experience. At the core of the two-year apprenticeship is 3,700 hours of on-farm employment and training under an approved “Master Dairy Grazier,” with opportunities for advancement upon completion. This on-the-job training is complemented by 300 hours of related technical instruction, which takes place in the format of online classes as well as educational workshop and events.

Apprentices not only gain skills, knowledge, and experience—they also develop relationships with other apprentices and master graziers in their region, as well as with other dairy farmers, agricultural professionals, and service providers in the local community.

COMPREHENSIVE TRAINING

Gain knowledge and experience within a structured program under the guidance of an experienced dairy farmer.

BUSINESS GUIDANCE

Receive professional financial analysis and business planning support for your future dairy endeavors.

FOLLOW YOUR DREAM

Manage a pastured dairy or start your own to help shape the future of the dairy industry.

SKILLS

Apprentices receive training in the following major work categories. Training largely occurs on-the-job, complemented by 300 hours of related instruction through online courses and educational events.

QUALIFICATIONS

Apprentices come from all walks of life. Some are farm kids who want to go deeper in their training on the home farm, or want to work on another operation to gain a different perspective. Some are seeking a career change. Some are recent graduates interested in learning a trade that connects them to the earth and the food system in powerful ways.

Help shape the future of the dairy industry.

How it works

  1. APPLY. To get started, first create a user account here. Then follow the steps to create your online profile.
  2. MATCH. Apprentices choose their preferred areas of placement by zip code. Approved master graziers search an online database for an apprentice who will be a good match for their operation.
  3. TRAIN. Apprentices learn from those who know dairy farming best. Master graziers prepare employees for management, partnerships, and eventual ownership.

Questions?

If you have questions about the program or whether it’s right for you, contact Aaron deLong at aaron@pasafarming.org. For more information, visit Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship’s national website. Pasa administers Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship in Pennsylvania and surrounding areas.