There are many internship options available for those wishing to gain experience in the dairy industry. Students majoring in animal science, dairy production, and other closely related agricultural fields may benefit significantly from completing these internships.
Dairy Internship Opportunities
The Miner Agricultural Research Institute in offers a Summer Experience in Farm Management (SEEM) over a 13 week period.
Interns participate in herd management, milking, livestock shows, and research projects with a herd of more than 300 Holstein cows in Chazy, New York. Compensation is $3,000 less a $300 fee for housing and meals (breakfast and lunch on weekdays). Applications are due in February and internships run from May to August. A 12-month dairy farm internship is also available for college graduates who are interested in dairy management and research.
Select Sires offers both summer internships and veterinary internships each year at the Plain City, Ohio headquarters. The summer internship has two options: corporate communications (designing the yearly breeding calendar, newsletters, and press releases) or dairy sire marketing (grooming cattle for professional photos, completing marketing projects, and traveling extensively). The veterinary internship is available to undergraduate and graduate students.
Vet interns assist with semen collection, reproductive exams, herd health, and export paperwork. The summer internships last 12 weeks, and the veterinary internships last at least 4 weeks; both are paid opportunities.
The Hilmar Dairy Internship program allows students to gain hands-on experience working with Jersey cattle at large-scale facilities in California.
Several dairies take on interns as a part of the 10-week summer program. Sophomore, junior, and senior dairy management students are encouraged to apply. Interns are compensated at a rate of at least $10 per hour and free housing and utilities are provided. Summer internships run from June to August and applications are due the prior December.
The American Jersey Cattle Association offers both summer marketing internships and on-farm herd management internships to high school graduates hoping to work in the Jersey dairy industry. Documentation of prior involvement with Jersey cattle is required. The internships are based at the AJCA headquarters in Reynoldsburg, Ohio.
Accelerated Genetics offers several internships in the dairy industry. Interns may be involved with artificial insemination of dairy cattle, market research studies, and more. Internships are based out of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and Illinois.
Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) offers a variety of internship opportunities in fields such as quality assurance, marketing, sales, and operations. Internships are available throughout the United States in both office and manufacturing settings. College credit and compensation are available to DFA interns.
Open internships can be viewed through the searchable database on the DFA site.
Hoard’s Dairyman offers a summer internship for college students interested in writing for the dairy magazine. Interns work closely with editors to create and edit magazine content, post blogs, and travel across the U.S. to visit dairy farms. Applications for summer internships are due in October of the prior year; internships run from May to August.
Genex Cooperative offers dairy cattle genetics internships at its facility in Shawano, Wisconsin. Applicants must have completed at least two years of collegiate coursework in dairy or animal science. Winter session (January-April), summer session (May-August), and fall session (September-December) internships are available. Interns are involved with data collection, photography, performance evaluations, genomic testing, and creating seminars for tour groups.
Housing and travel expenses for interns are paid.
ABS Global is a major bovine genetics company that offers a variety of internship opportunities each year. Internship categories include livestock handling, production, sales and service, and marketing communications.
Stony Pond Farm is a small organic dairy that offers internships with its herd of Jersey and Devon cows. Internships run from May 1 to November 1 at the SPF facility in Fairfield, Vermont. The internship duties include milking, feeding, grazing management, and farmer’s market participation. A small monthly stipend, housing, utilities, and food from the farm are provided.
Related Internships in the Dairy Industry
Those hoping to pursue a job in the dairy industry may also find valuable internship opportunities on our other related internship pages: animal nutrition internships, pre-veterinary internships, and animal behavior internships. Working with a veterinarian also provides hands-on experience that will be looked upon favorably by dairy industry organizations.
Check with your college professors, agricultural extension agents, farm cooperatives, and local dairy organizations to see what internship programs might be available in your specific area.