mano-Y-ola believes in supporting the future of agriculture through the talent development of Hispanic students in two distinct internship programs. Our company’s partnership with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has directed our growth in the field of talent development. We first started the talent development program in 2018 with our Travel Internship where we placed college students in various NRCS field offices. During this Travel Internship, our interns spent their summers gaining valuable work experience and exposure to the world of agriculture. Since that year, we have hosted annual summer Travel Internships, and in 2020, we expanded to include a virtual internship in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the Virtual Internship, interns complete a curriculum developed by our company designed to educate them on the basics of natural resource conservation, data and entrepreneurship, leadership, and how to navigate the professional world as young future conservationists.
Building a successful approach to enhance USDA-NRCS's Hispanic outreach and increasing the agency's bilingual, professional talent pool are two endeavors that mano-Y-ola knows how to do well. Our priority is to extend the agency across Hispanic communities, counties, and states. Internships at mano-Y-ola give students a unique opportunity to make connections with USDA-NRCS offices, opening doorways to potential, future employment.
How Our Internship Works
Join Us as We Change the Face of Hispanic Agricultural Presence across the United States
Discover our Travel Internship, where Hispanic agricultural students like you can gain real-world, professional experience in NRCS field offices across the United States and Puerto Rico.
*Locations (10) | Full-Time | Paid | Summer
*The locations can be in North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, Indiana, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Puerto Rico. NRCS officials to choose upon review of interns selected by the mano-Y-ola team.
Cultivar Learning Network Virtual Internship
Discover our Virtual Internship, where Hispanic agricultural students like you receive training in natural resources conservation and agribusiness as well as coaching on leadership and professionalism, and then implement what they have learned on a local farm in Puerto Rico.
Virtual | Part-Time | Paid | Spring & Fall
States, including Puerto Rico
Currently working with USDA or agricultural fields
“First of all, I would like to give a massive thanks for this wonderful opportunity. I really enjoyed it, and it was a great space to learn more about different career paths and opportunities.”
– Julian Lamadrid, Traveling Hispanic Outreach Ambassador 2022
“Muchas, muchas gracias! Virginia NRCS will continue to fully support the mano-Y-ola program. Please count on our support at the field, area, and state levels. By the way, we have a full-time Soil Conservationist (Javier Medina-Sanchez) who was part of your program, and we hired him last year via DHA. He is doing very well. Looking forward to more interns and eventually bringing additional mano-Y-ola candidates on board as full-time employees here in VA or anywhere around the nation.”
– Edwin Martínez, State Conservationist, USDA-NRCS, VA
“The most important lesson I'm taking with me is to do things even when I'm most afraid because it will end up being the most rewarding thing."
– Cultivar Learning Network Intern
What are the internship requirements for those participating in the Online Virtual Internship option?Attend all online Module presentations. Participate in at least two coaching sessions. Design, develop, and present an internship conservation project using the training themes and topics from the internship lessons learned. The project can be completed individually or in a group with peers from the internship. Student interns must submit a project plan to mano-Y-ola coaches for approval. mano-Y-ola's team will provide additional information and instructions about the projects during the training.
What are the internship requirements for Traveling Interns?Interns will be working under the supervision of a Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) office and a conservationist. The interns will have an opportunity to work in teams or individually, depending on the Office's outreach needs and priorities. Each office focuses on implementing NRCS programs: Environmental Improvement programs; Conservation Technical Assistance programs; Stewardship programs; and others. The mano-Y-ola internship students will have the opportunity to observe and participate in these programs and services. mano-Y-ola interns will have the chance to interact and participate in training and join efforts with employees and other interns, including those in the Pathways Program.
Where would the internship take place?mano-Y-ola established relationships with NRCS offices in the following states: North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, Indiana, Louisiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. Each state contact and supervisor will select a candidate from the final candidates invited by mano-y-ola to participate. The states choose candidates based on students’ academic interests and offices' needs. After the state selects the candidates, mano-Y-ola will provide information about the state NRCS office and the contact person supervising them during the six-week internship.
What exactly does it mean when you state that there is a housing and travel stipend available for interns working in the U.S.?mano-Y-ola’s internship program plans to place students at different locations across the United States. Each site is unique, and many are in rural areas where transportation and lodging are not easy to find. However, we offer Travel Stipends to cover airfare and the best possible ground transportation available (when necessary) to the internship work location.
What is the pay for the Internship?Virtual: $15 per hour x 44 hours within a three-month period. Travel: $15 per hour x 40 hours a week for six weeks.
Does the internship pay overtime?The allocated funding covers a maximum number of hours for each internship, not overtime.
What will happen once the internship ends?Many of mano-Y-ola's former interns have experienced success and accepted offers to progress academically and professionally. We hope that this internship opens doors and prepares you for the professional or academic opportunities you choose to follow. You may also decide to apply to the USDA Pathways Program, graduate programs, or job opportunities.
mano-Y-ola is a minority- and female-owned company with over thirty years of experience in leadership development, education research and evaluation, and community outreach and development. To learn more about mano-Y-ola LLC, go to our main website:
With headquarters in North Carolina, and team members in:
- Puerto Rico
- The Netherlands