Position Description

The Teaching Farm Fellow supports Jones Valley Teaching Farm (JVTF) staff between July 2016 to July 2017 in one of several roles at the organization. Each role supports our work and furthers our mission. We are looking to assess individual skill sets to determine where you best fit into JVTF’s work. You can learn more about our work at jvtf.org.

Working with our staff requires a high degree of self-­reliance, confidence and initiative. A successful candidate must possess extraordinary professionalism, flexibility, intuitiveness and organization and communication skills. In addition, the Teaching Farm Fellow must be comfortable and enjoy working with our energetic, high performing team in an urban setting serving many students from low resource communities.

Jones Valley Teaching Farm

Jones Valley Teaching Farm (JVTF) is a non­profit 501(c)(3) located in Birmingham, Alabama. We design innovative, hands-­on food education programs that improve student learning and increase student access to healthy food. Through our urban teaching farms and partnerships with schools, more than 17,000 students have been educated through our programs over the last four years.

In 2012, JVTF launched Good School Food (GSF), our in­-school food education model, in a Pre-­K­–5 Birmingham City School. We have since expanded this program to seven total partner schools, including five in one distinct Pre­K­12 feeder pattern.

GSF is designed to improve education and health outcomes for students. We achieve this by building out
extensive teaching farms­­ called Farm Labs­­ on school campuses and providing our partner schools with full-­time instructors who collaborate with teachers to develop and deliver programs and curricula that align food and nutrition concepts with learning goals in math, science, social studies, engineering, and language arts.

Our work in schools is guided by these principles:

1. Education should be holistic and student-­centered. Every student’s voice matters.

2. Public schools are community hubs capable of great things.

3. Investing directly in teachers maximizes impact on students.

4. Hands-­on, experiential, and project-­based education improves students’ content retention and attitudes towards learning.

5. Design­-thinking strategies can be used in education to prototype, test and refine ideas quickly to discover the best solutions for students.

What We Look For:

● Believers in the power of education and food

● Undergraduate or Associates degree (preferred)

● Leadership experience teaching in a classroom or leading outdoor education (preferred)

● A positive and constructive attitude, self­-direction, self­-motivation

● An openness and drive for learning, assessing and improving your work and the ability to hear,

reflect upon and implement feedback

● Ability to be flexible and handle multiple projects at one time

● Must be physically capable of participating in the physically demanding needs of gardening and landscape work

● An understanding (desire to understand) of organic and sustainable growing practices

● A willingness to innovate and contribute to the growth and evolution of JVTF as an organization


● Growth: This is a true opportunity for working at the community level, making decisions that impact the growth and development of a nonprofit with ambitious goals, and impacting students. Through this job, you will have an immediate platform for fast, but thoughtful professional and personal growth. We will provide extensive opportunity for Professional Development throughout the year, with sessions pertaining to educational pedagogy, sustainable farming practices, community development, and food and nutrition.

● Culture: We take care of one another at JVTF. You are not expected to be anyone but yourself.

● Good Food: We have one of the most robust and productive urban farms in the country, and our staff has access to fresh organic produce all year long.

Duration and Compensation

The Teaching Farm Fellowship is a collaboration between Jones Valley Teaching Farm and the AmeriCorps VISTA program through the Corporation for National and Community Service. The Teaching Farm Fellow position is a one­-year, full-­time position. Fellows will receive an AmeriCorps Vista Allowances Package. This position begins July 2016.

Application Information

To apply, please send a cover letter, résumé, and unofficial transcript(s) with “Teaching Farm Fellow” in the subject line to fellows@jvtf.org. In this cover letter, please highlight previous relevant experience(s).

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