Common Threads: Looking Back on a Farm Apprenticeship

Recently I have been thinking about what I would do once my apprenticeship ends. As a somewhat last resort, I retook the the famous Myers-Briggs personality test online. I had taken it in high school as sort of a career guidance tool but had not thought about it again until recently. I am so glad I did, as it seemed to have opened a door to the inner workings of my psyche. For those not familiar with the test, it gives you an acronym based on four pillars of one’s personality and cognitive organization. I tested as an INFJ, which, in very broad terms, is a type known for advocating for moral and ethical justice in the world. A large part of me feels this way, and it is probably why I feel so strongly about food justice and why I was drawn to being an apprentice here.

Gaining Ground has been the perfect fit for my first job after studying agriculture science because of all of the different facets of the apprenticeship. First, I was in the field everyday, adding to my working knowledge and professional experience in agriculture. Additionally, I have been connecting to the community outside of the farm daily with our many volunteer groups and learning how to set up volunteers for success, even if they have no farming or gardening experience. Outside the farm, I was able to meet some of our recipients at the Head Start market in Lowell and engage with them about how they cook with our vegetables. I was able to fully see the whole philosophy of Gaining Ground, from seed to grateful recipient, which has been a truly unique and humbling experience. I know that the food we carefully grow is going into the good hands of people who truly need it. Through this responsibility, we have built a small community around the farm that connects people through the common thread of nutritious and delicious food, which has been a truly beautiful thing to be a part of, especially for this INFJ.