Location: Northampton, MA

American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. AFT launched the conservation agriculture movement and continues to raise public awareness through our No Farms, No Food message. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.5 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres, and supported thousands of farm families. Long a pioneering leader, AFT is now riding a new wave of growth, driven by agriculture’s most pressing needs and opportunities

AFT’s Farmland Information Center (FIC) supports people working to save farmland for farming by providing an answer service and online collection of resources at www.farmlandinfo.org. 

Duties & Responsibilities 

The Farmland Protection Policy Research Intern(s) will conduct research and collect resources and data on state and local farmland protection programs, laws and policies, and trends in U.S. agriculture. Specific tasks include:   

  • Identify, track, and report on farmland protection programs using internet-based research tools; 
  • Identify state and local laws and sample farmland protection documents for inclusion in the FIC’s online resource collection;   
  • Conduct surveys and monitor the activity of established farmland protection programs, including programs that buy agricultural conservation easements to protect agricultural land; 
  • Gather and analyze data and statistics on farmland, farm producers and other topics.

Interns will have the opportunity to: 

Learn about farmland protection laws, policies and programs at all levels of government;  

  • Become familiar with “tools of the trade” in farmland protection;  
  • Gain an understanding of issues facing agricultural conservation professionals nationwide; and   
  • Develop skills in presenting data in meaningful ways. 

The Farmland Protection Policy Research Intern(s) will be paid a stipend with an expectation to work approximately 120 - 180 hours over 12 weeks (10 – 15 hours per week), or a qualified and interested candidate may be contracted for approximately 240 – 360 hours over 12 weeks (20 – 30 hours per week). The project team is based in AFT’s New England Regional Office in Northampton, Massachusetts. Interns can work on site or remotely and are required to attend regular check-in meetings with the project team (by phone or in person) to report on progress and ask questions.  


Relevant Bachelor’s degree or equivalent education and experience; graduate-level coursework in planning or legal education preferred. Interest in public policy, agricultural conservation and familiarity with land use issues helpful. Strong communication skills, research ability and knowledge of spreadsheets (Excel) required.     

If you are eager to join our team, please visit this page to apply.

Application deadline:  This position will remain open until filled with a projected commencement date in early June 2019. 

Please submit a cover letter with resume for consideration. 

American Farmland Trust provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, American Farmland Trust complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the organization has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.