Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship for Veterans
As a veteran, you bring a skill set that mirrors those needed to succeed in the dairy industry! Take your ability to learn new concepts, love of outdoors and entrepreneurial mindset to a life-long career in dairy starting with an apprenticeship in dairy grazing. No prior agriculture experience required!
Through a USDA grant, our program provides a two-year apprenticeship program that teaches you how to be a Dairy Herd Manager in grazing dairies. On grazing dairies cows gain a significant portion of their diet through grazing on high quality forage in a pasture.
The program offers Veterans:
- Full-time, paid employment and training over 2 years
- Eligibility for GI-Bill benefits
- Coaching and support
- $4,500 stipend paid in 3 installments
- Financial planning resources during and after the apprenticeship
- Organized veteran activities outside of DGA
- Use of educational benefits or VOC rehab
- Opportunities to advance to management or ownership
Grazing Apprenticeship (DGA) is a National Apprenticeship under the U.S. Department of Labor-Employment and Training Administration covering all aspects of operating a managed grazing dairy farm.
This role is for you if you:
- You are highly motivated and looking to be in a hands-on role in agriculture
- Enjoy working outside and being in the elements and are comfortable working closely with large livestock
- Are a natural problem-solver and want to advance your career
How the Apprenticeship program works
You are hired by an approved Master and then provided a local Education Coordinator who works with you to ensure you are getting the full educational support and on-farm technical services the program provides. Apprentices not only gain skills, knowledge, and experience but also develop relationships with Apprentices and Masters in their cohort as well as with other dairy farmers, agricultural professionals, and service providers in the local community. The training incorporates:
- Courses in Pasture Management, Milk Quality, Herd Health, Dairy Nutrition, Soil & Water Resources Management, and Farm Financial Management
- Peer Discussion Groups, Pasture Walks, Farming Conferences, and Networking Opportunities
- Holistic Management and Professional Development Training
What you will be doing:
- Work in all aspects of the farm operation including working with herd health, pasture management, crops, feed and milking
- Engage daily with the Farm Manager on prioritization of tasks and any herd health concerns
- Maintain accurate record keeping for herd and crops
- Maintain herd health and productivity including giving vaccinations and managing sick cows
- Daily milking with attention to quality and procedure
- Perform heat detection and artificial insemination (AI)
- Assist with spring calving and calf health
- Perform general daily farm work including feeding, scraping, cleaning and basic maintenance of equipment and facilities
- Maintain general upkeep and cleanliness of house, lawn, farmstead, buildings, fencing and land
- Must have high school diploma or higher or GED, or a composite score of at least 18, or comparable Accuplacer test scores in math and reading.
- Must be at least 18 years of age.
- Must be physically able to perform the work of the trade with reasonable accommodations and without hazard to themselves or others.
- Must have reliable transportation to and from work and school.
Please apply online through apply link below to make application profile available to Masters (employers).
For more information please contact DGA Veteran Liaison, Matthew Keesling at firstname.lastname@example.org or 715-623-691