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Agroecology, Farming & Food Pathways (AFFP) Program

Agroecology, Farming and Food Pathways (AFFP) - An engaging training and certificate program in Urban & Rural Agroecological Food Systems and Microenterprise (prioritizing enrollment for socially disadvantaged individuals that currently reside in the United States)

MESA’s Agroecology, Farming & Food Pathways (AFFP) offers two consecutive, participatory online courses to explore a career in agriculture. Enrollees located near MESA’s three California partner sites enroll in course curriculum for class assignments and participate in weekly course discussion and guest presentation sessions. Earn a Certificate in Applied Agroecology upon completion of the coursework. Students also participate in hands-on farm workshops and site visits. MESA’s main partners and CA regions are:

The Center for Food, Faith and Justice and EcoVillage Farm Learning Center (Berkeley/Richmond)

Mission Resource Conservation District and Edge of Urban Farm (Fallbrook/Vista)

Institute for Sustainability at Cal State University (Northridge campus)

What is a Cohort?
Each cohort group consists of 15-20 students and is led by one of MESA’s three CA partners. A fourth, online-only TAAP cohort welcomes U.S.-based students outside our 3 CA partner regions and is led by MESA staff (see TAAP info. below). The four-month AFFP starts with an introduction to Agroecology and leads to earning a Certificate in Advanced Agroecology from MESA and our partner institution.

Scholarship Eligibility: Students who meet the [USDA’s eligibility criteria as socially disadvantaged under the 2501 Program have registration priority and receive full AFFP scholarship, which includes additional fellowship opportunities for apprenticeships, mentor matching, mini-grants, application support for USDA grants and loans, and more.

We are now accepting inquiries and inviting applications for Cohort 4! Cohort 4 is planned for September – December, 2021. Future AFFP start dates will be posted as available. To receive more information about our next cohort program detail and exact start/end dates, which may vary by CA partner, please fill out the inquiry form below.

Currently offering two certificate-tracks:

  1. Certificate in Applied Agroecology*:

The certificate program uses a cohort model, and is designed to induce self-inquiry as fellows define and advance their interest in agroecology, farming & food pathways. Fellows will complete 14 weekly sessions over 4 months, assignments (including professional development topics), as well as work with a mentor to complete a learning plan to complete 80 hours of self directed learning (50 hours of hands-on work & 30 hours of technical training). We use Google classroom to facilitate course materials, assignment submissions, and meet virtually using Zoom. Key course themes include: (1) Food Sovereignty, (2) Food Systems, (3) Participatory Action, (4) Land Defense, (5) Sustainable Agroecosystems, (6) Agroecological Practices.

  1. Certificado en Introducción a la Agroecología (ofrecido en español) → Certificate in Introduction to Agroecology (offered in Spanish):

El certificado incluye sesiones y actividades de desarrollo profesional. Los estudiantes completarán 8 sesiones durante 4 meses (2 mensuales) y asignaciones (incluidos temas de desarrollo profesional). Usamos el aula de Google para facilitar los materiales del curso, el envío de tareas y reunirnos virtualmente con Zoom. Los temas clave del curso incluyen: (1) Soberanía alimentaria, (2) Sistemas alimentarios, (3) Acción participativa, (4) Defensa de la tierra, (5) Agroecosistemas sostenibles, (6) Prácticas agroecológicas.

The certificate course includes coursework and professional development activities. Students will complete 8 sessions over 4 months (2 monthly), and assignments (including professional development topics). We use Google classroom to facilitate course materials, assignment submissions, and meet virtually using Zoom. Key course themes include: (1) Food Sovereignty, (2) Food Systems, (3) Participatory Action, (4) Land Defense, (5) Sustainable Agroecosystems, (6) Agroecological Practices.

TAAP cost: $0 for candidates who qualify as socially disadvantaged via USDA guidelines receive priority enrollment. Donations to support all limited resource learners are always welcome!

Inquire today about joining our program (bottom of page) --> https://mesaprogram.org/affp/

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