The Experience

Is this program right for you?

We do not much care about race, color, sexual preference, etc., and we would not enjoy the company of people who make an issue of these matters. Quality of character is our major interest.

These are some of the traits that will carry you far at the ETC:
  1. Absolute honesty and forthrightness
  2. Deep respect for private space and boundaries
  3. Motivation to work both autonomously and with a group
  4. A sense of humor and a deep appreciation of beauty
  5. A knack for knowing when to take initiative and when to come back for guidance

There will be a number of apprentices and staff members living on site, as well as a number of staff living off-site within our community. You will experience what it is like to live in a communal setting, sharing facilities and responsibilities. You will have daily chores, such as cooking, bathroom cleanup, sweeping floors, etc. You are expected to clean up after yourself, and be part of the team.

Expect many visitors at the Ecovillage Training Center. In addition to Farm folks who like to stop by, people come through for a tour of the site, student groups come and go, and we run an overnight hostel. In general these visitors are an amazing help to our community, and we ask that you join with us to make them feel welcome.

What You Will Experience: Learn-While-You-Work

Watch this video to see a tour of the ETC. Keep in mind this video is a few years old and some projects have progressed.

Natural Building

Our primary focus in 2016 will be natural building with a view towards completing two large building projects on site that have been underway for more than a year. The construction includes hands-on experience with natural buildings of all types as well as the fundamentals of permaculture design and ecovillage master planning.

Some of the techniques include:
  • CobThe Farm Permaculture Apprenticeship Natural Building
  • Earthbag
  • Strawbale
  • Bamboo
  • Living roofs
  • Round-pole and Cordwood
  • Freestack Stone
  • Earthships

We are in the process of adding the final touches on several natural structures and remodeling our EcoHostel, using our best techniques and "designing for enchantment." These are some of the most exciting and artistic parts of the natural building experience as they invite you to really use your imagination.

Permaculture Apprenticeship Natural BuildingSome techniques include:
  • Creating natural paints and dyes
  • Clay and lime-based finishing plasters
  • Fine detail carpentry
Organic Farming
Some topics will include:Permaculture Apprenticeship Mushroom Logs
  • Mushrooms
  • Food forest
  • Eatable Landscape
  • Herb gardens
  • Tropical plants
  • Composting Methods
Water & Wastewater Systems
Permaculture Apprenticeship Bio Filter ProjectSome topics will include:
  • Compost toilet
  • Grey water wetlands
  • Rainwater catchment
  • Worm-based septic system
Biochar
Permaculture Apprenticeship Biochar
Community Building

The fabric of The Farm community is tight-nit and a wonderful place to learn about the benefits and challenges of intentional community living. Apprentices are welcome to attend and observe all of the open community gatherings and committee meetings within The Farm. ApprenticesPermaculture Apprenticeship Bonfire will also have the opportunity to attend our monthly Transition Town meetings at our county seat to experience how our community redesign concepts translate to the county level.

Apprentices will also engage with one another through team building activities and ritual. There will be many opportunities to develop leadership skills.