The Food Project: Organizational Learning Fellow

Apply here. (Applications due Friday, January 13, 2017)

Non-U.S. citizens are not eligible to apply for this position.


Location: Lincoln, MA

Fellowship Position

Position title: Organizational Learning Fellow

Department: Youth Development

Reports to: Director of Programming and Institutional Learning

Address of fellowship placement: 10 Lewis Street, Lincoln, MA 01773

Department Description

The Food Project is a place where diverse groups of youth and adults come together to create a just and sustainable food system. Youth work on our 70 acres of farmland, build raised-bed gardens in community spaces, staff affordable farmers markets, provide service at hunger relief organizations, and assist our efforts to effect resident-led food system change in low-income, food insecure neighborhoods. Our youth development staff is dedicated to affect social change, fight oppression, and to increase access to fresh, healthy food for everyone. Our staff culture imitates that of our powerful youth programs and abides by the “Four R’s” of youth development: relationships, responsibility, rigor, and relevance. We create a safe space for positive relationships across diverse backgrounds, we take responsibility for our work and serve as self-advocates, we understand that nothing is accomplished without rigor, and we ensure that relevance deepens our work and allows individual and community ownership of our mission.

Position Description

This fellow will assist The Food Project’s youth development team to integrate thorough, effective evaluation tools into youth programming. The fellow will be tasked initially with gaining an immersive understanding of The Food Project’s models and approaches, as well as the current state of our evaluation processes and our need to improve those processes. Specific tasks involve creating a progress map from tracking the achievement of core competencies and learning objectives in our three youth programs. The fellow will then help design, manage, and implement an overhaul of our youth programming to efficiently combine rigorous evaluation procedures with the extant curriculum.

The fellow will work closely with our program team and, in particular, our Director of Programming and Institutional Learning who will lead the project. A successful fellow will be interested and knowledgeable in education and youth development, and non-profit management; be interested in evaluation tools and metrics and their place in non-profit youth development; be excited about coming up with technological solutions to problems of efficient data recording, collation, and display; and share the values of an organization committed to working across difference to effect food system change and provide youth leadership opportunities.

Examples of specific responsibilities, projects, tasks, and/or duties of the Fellow include:

  • Gain a thorough understanding of The Food Project models and approaches to youth development by being in the field and working alongside youth and their supervisors.
  • Understand The Food Project’s current youth evaluation processes and the organizational need for improving those processes.
  • Work closely with the Director of Programming and Institutional Learning to create and develop innovative evaluation tools and metrics that cohere with our curriculum and limitations on resources.
  • Test and implement evaluation processes in close consultation with program staff.
  • Devise methods of conveying results of evaluation to stakeholders within and outside the organization in effective and efficient ways.
  • Serve as project manager and timekeeper for the project work plan, scope, and schedules.
  • Create and maintain project documentation.


  • Ability to work in a fast-paced and emergent setting with diverse youth and adults.
  • Preferred coursework in non-profit management, youth development and education, social change, and ethnography.
  • Proven experience in project management, preferably with evaluation experience.
  • Ability to articulate complex systems with clarity and make them understandable with text and
  • Applied knowledge in youth development preferred.
  • Excellent research, writing, and verbal communication skills
  • Proven experience in interpersonal, time management, problem solving, and organizational skills
  • Valid driver’s license and reliable vehicle preferred.

Professional Development

  • Daily contact with members of our executive leadership team (ELT), including Executive Director James Harrison, and in particular with Director of Programming and Institutional Learning Cindy Davenport.
  • Close integration with, and understanding of, a youth development program that is a national model.
  • Invitations to sit in on Board of Trustees meetings that occur every other month and will include discussions of financial reports and fundraising, programmatic updates, and strategic objectives.
  • Attendance at four “Institutes,” biannual threeday training sessions offered by The Food Project to organizations and individuals looking to learn from The Food Project’s history and models.
  • Supervised practice leading and facilitating across a dynamic organization that operates over multiple sites, around differing schedules, and with leaders of all ages.
  • Active development of project and time management skills with Ms. Davenport as these skills will be key to success in this position.