Sustainable Food and Bioenergy Systems: Student Internships Development Plan

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2008: $29,983.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2010
Region: Western
State: Montana
Principal Investigator:
Dr. William Dyer
Montana State University

Annual Reports


  • Agronomic: barley, canola, potatoes, sunflower, wheat
  • Vegetables: asparagus, beans, beets, broccoli, cabbages, carrots, cauliflower, celery, garlic, greens (leafy), lentils, onions, peas (culinary), sweet corn, brussel sprouts
  • Additional Plants: herbs
  • Animals: bees, poultry


  • Animal Production: free-range, manure management, grazing - multispecies, grazing - rotational
  • Crop Production: conservation tillage
  • Education and Training: technical assistance, farmer to farmer, networking, on-farm/ranch research, participatory research
  • Farm Business Management: new enterprise development, cooperatives, community-supported agriculture, market study, whole farm planning
  • Natural Resources/Environment: biodiversity, habitat enhancement
  • Pest Management: biological control, biorational pesticides, botanical pesticides, competition, compost extracts, cultural control, economic threshold, field monitoring/scouting, flame, integrated pest management, mulches - killed, mulches - living, physical control, mulching - plastic, cultivation, precision herbicide use, soil solarization, mulching - vegetative
  • Production Systems: agroecosystems, holistic management
  • Soil Management: composting, earthworms, green manures, organic matter, soil analysis, nutrient mineralization, soil quality/health
  • Sustainable Communities: new business opportunities, urban agriculture, urban/rural integration, sustainability measures

    Proposal summary:

    Pete Fay, operator of Rocky Creek Farm in Bozeman, Montana, along with a dozen other producers, will use the funding from this Professional + Producer Grant to connect them with an intern from Montana State University, who is studying the newly initiated baccalaureate program, Sustainable Food and Bioenergy Systems.

    This project will address the continuation of agriculture by providing interested youths with the opportunity to study and research sustainable practices during on-farm internships. The task force of participating farmers will recruit additional internship hosts and provide training, develop a platter of options for students and establish internship criteria, objectives and descriptions.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    These internships will not only foster a newly instigated undergraduate degree, but they also will familiarize students with the hands-on aspects of sustainable production and provide the producers with enthusiastic, young help to meet their goals. A website will provide information on internship opportunities and outcomes.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.