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Serve Your Community, Grow Your Career

FoodsCorps Service Member Tessa Finkelstein leads a lesson in a school garden. (Bronx, NY)

Apply for the 2023-2024 Service Term

Last chance! Apply by March 27.

Apply Now

As a FoodCorps service member, you’ll teach kids to grow, cook, and love the nourishing foods that celebrate their cultures and communities—and help schools serve more of those foods, too. FoodCorps recruits talented leaders into full-time, paid public service, where they grow healthy school food environments in diverse communities through hands-on, experiential food education. Service members commit for a year at a time, but for the greatest impact on kids and on your career, we encourage you to come back for a second year.

STEP 1

What Service Members Do

As a service member, you’ll teach kids about nourishing food and help schools become healthier places for them to learn and grow. Most of your time will be spent teaching in the classroom and garden; there are also opportunities to work with school nutrition directors in supporting districtwide food systems change. Most service corps members do the following:

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    Lead Hands-On Lessons

    You’ll teach students to grow, cook, and taste new foods, building their knowledge of and enthusiasm for fruits and veggies. You’ll collaborate with teachers on integrating food into the curriculum, and you may help organize field trips to local farms or visits from chefs.

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    Influence Nourishing School Meals

    You’ll cultivate a cafeteria experience that steers students towards fresh fruits and veggies, gets them excited to try new foods, and celebrates their culture and community. You’ll get kids to try samples during taste tests and brainstorm foods that make them feel strong and nourished. You may even work with food service directors and farmers to get local foods onto the lunch tray.

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    Build A Culture of Health

    You’ll be an active, collaborative member of the school community, working to ensure that the whole school environment—from hallway to classroom to cafeteria—celebrates nourishing food. You may plan family cooking nights and organize food fundraisers, too.

Learn More
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Kimberly Miramontes and her students water plants and harvest fresh dinosaur kale. (Oakland, CA)
STEP 2

Who We’re Looking For

You want to make a difference in the world. You understand that food in school is a driver for equity, justice, and lifelong healthy habits. You’re committed to learning, growing, and developing as a professional and as an active member of your community. You see food as a fundamental part of every kid’s education. And you want to work directly in schools, with students, to make food central to their classroom experience.

Eligibility

To be considered for a FoodCorps service member position, you must:

  • Be 18 years or older by the start of service
  • Be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or lawful permanent resident of the United States
  • Hold a high school diploma, GED or equivalent

The ideal candidate has:

  • Passion for building a healthier future for school children
  • Demonstrated leadership aptitude
  • Motivation and commitment to serve full-time directly in a community
  • Self-determination in the face of challenges and creativity in finding solutions
  • Respect for diversity of opinion, experience, and background
  • Display a growth mindset by willing to grow through coaching and implementation of feedback
  • Knowledge of the culture, history, and/or language of the communities we serve
  • Desire to gain hands-on experience in food education

FoodCorps has given me a chance to make tangible change in the community I grew up in. It’s incredibly rewarding to watch kids get excited about healthy food.

—Erika Van Dyke, served in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Read Stories of Service

STEP 3

Where We Work

FoodCorps currently serves more than 100 schools and districts in 12 states and the District of Columbia. We encourage members to serve in their local communities, as service is often most impactful when members feel a connection to or have strong knowledge of the community they serve. Keep in mind that we do not provide housing.

Want to know what it’s like to serve in a particular community?

Contact the corresponding program staff via the Connect section of the region’s page.

Where We Work

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Step 4

Benefits of Service

FoodCorps service members receive a stipend, health insurance, and other benefits. In addition, FoodCorps prepares alumni for lifelong careers of impact as food educators, school nutrition leaders, and policy influencers. Being part of the FoodCorps alumni network connects you to thousands of passionate professionals who can help you build a career at the intersection of food justice and education equity.

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Living Stipend
Arrow Flip Living Stipend

$33,000 for the full 11-month term

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AmeriCorps Segal Education Award
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Arrow Flip AmeriCorps Segal Education Award

After successfully completing your FoodCorps term of service, you’ll be eligible for a $6,895 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award. You can use the award to repay qualified student loans and to pay current educational expenses at eligible institutions of higher education and training programs.

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Student Loan Forbearance
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Arrow Flip Student Loan Forbearance

As a FoodCorps service member, you may be eligible for student loan forbearance. You can learn more from our partners at AmeriCorps.

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Health Insurance
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Arrow Flip Health Insurance

You’ll receive basic health, dental, and vision coverage.

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Partial Childcare Reimbursements
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Arrow Flip Partial Childcare Reimbursements

Child care assistance may be available for qualified service members who need the benefit in order to serve.

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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
Arrow Flip Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Some service members are eligible to receive SNAP benefits.

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Need-Based Funding
Arrow Flip Need-Based Funding

Financial support for relocation, housing, or extenuating circumstances is available on a limited basis, though not guaranteed.

5 Tips to Make Your Application Shine

5 Tips to Make Your Application Shine

Step 5

5 Tips to Make Your Application Shine

01

Demonstrate your passion for working in service in children. We want to know why you’re excited to work with kids in schools!

02

Show your personality! We are looking for people with compelling personal stories, not cookie-cutter candidates.

03

In your personal statement, tell a story about a specific pivotal moment or experience that inspired you to pursue this path.

04

Upload a video or other supplemental file that expresses your passion for and connection to FoodCorps’ mission and what it means to you—be creative!

Please note: You are welcome to include links as supplemental files. Just insert the link to your video, writing, or other content in a document you upload.

05

Connect with a FoodCorps staff member before applying in order to learn more about what service is like in your region of choice. Many of our program staff are alums of the FoodCorps program. Because they have served with FoodCorps and are now supporting service members on the ground, they have great insight into the service experience and how it varies from place to place. You can find contact information for the program staff at the top of each regional page.

Key Application Dates

2022

October

Application for 2023-2024 opens

2022

Nov 18

Deadline to receive decision by Jan 30

2023

Jan 16

Deadline to receive decision by March 6

2023

Mar 27

Deadline to receive decision by May 15

2023

Aug 7

Service term starts

2024

July 5

Service term end

Application Timeline

This year, we’re accepting applications and making admissions decisions on a rolling basis. Applications will be accepted anytime between Oct. 14, 2022 and March 27, 2023. The earlier you apply, the earlier you’ll receive a decision. Service site preferences will become limited as slots are filled, so we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible!

Click “See the Application Timeline” to view more details.

STEP 7

Stay in the loop

Check out The Skillet, FoodCorps’ home for news, stories, and resources

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Newsletter

Sign up here to get emails about FoodCorps programs, service member opportunities, policy updates, and more. (We promise not to send too many emails.)

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