The Farm Experience Internship (FEI) is a course (3 ECTS) created to bring together practice of the farmer and theory of the student, aiming to create bridges between University and farmers. Many educational institutes, in Europe and around the world have developed similar courses, internships or projects, in which students go for a practical experience in a local farm. The results of this kind of initiative are often very positive, as the students can connect what they learned in the farm with their studies as well as develop their critical thinking.
Participating students go through a three stage learning process, which is the main structure of the farm experience internship:
1. Preparation phase: workshops, lectures, games & excursions
During these 4 days we use a diverse set of methods to get prepared for the Internship period. We learn about key concepts such as agro-ecology, permaculture, learning styles and participatory research, reflect on the farmers’ reality and get to know the group members through work, shared meals and interactive games.
2. Practical experience on an agro-ecological farm;
Each student will go to a different farm, to work together with the farmer family. The approach is ‘full immersion’, which means that one joins the working and living rythm and activities of the farmers during two weeks. Most selected farmers are ‘progressive organic farmers’, but otherwise interesting farms, with good learning opportunities are also selected. A perfect place to ask all your questions and put all your knowledge and skills to the test!
3. Evaluation and collective assessment
After the internship, all the participating students come back for a three day evaluation phase. In this final phase we share experiences, compare, reflect, assess, report and celebrate!
When: 5th-27th August
Where: Wageningen, Netherlands