Calling all aspiring herbalists and educators


**We are currently full for the 2018 Budding Herbalist Internship Program. Next year, we plan to expand the program to include 3 different cohorts spanning most of the farming season (late spring, summer, early fall). We accept applications on a rolling basis, though we will not begin reviewing applications for 2019 until Winter 2018.**

This summer, we will be launching our first-ever internship program. It will be a hands-on educational opportunity for beginning herbalists. We will welcome 5 interns to live in our guesthouse for 6 weeks. Interns will help on the farm 4 days per week with the cultivation, maintenance and harvest of medicinal herbs. In the evenings, they can expect classes on a wide range of topics in herbal medicine and holistic health. We will supply essential medicine making supplies to encourage interns to develop their skills over their 6-week stay. Weekends will be mostly free to explore the area, with a few plant-focused field trips! The program is scheduled for July 8 - August 17, 2018.

  Echinacea in bloom on our 90-acre organic farm

Echinacea in bloom on our 90-acre organic farm

Located in Sandy, Oregon, Eclectic Institute is in a prime spot for summer adventures. We have Mt. Hood National Forest as our backyard, the scenic Columbia River Gorge just 15 miles to the north, and rapidly-growing Portland, Oregon just an hour drive west. There is no shortage of beautiful wilderness, world-class hiking, and epic fun to be had around here!

Eclectic Institute is tucked just outside of the Bull Run wilderness area, about 30 miles east of Portland.


The classes will be taught by many different teachers in order to provide a well-rounded approach to health and herbalism. They are experts in their field, many of whom operate their own herbal schools in the area. The program will primarily be taught from a traditional western perspective, at an introductory level. There will be classroom-style learning in addition to plant hikes in Mt. Hood National Forest. Our list of courses for Summer 2018 include:

  • Introduction to Holistic Herbalism & Constitutional Medicine
  • Basic Botany in the Classroom and Field (2-part series)
    • includes working with non-native plants and ethical wild-crafting
  • The Chemistry of Medicinal Plants
  • Sustainable Herbalism: Why we work with weeds
  • Decolonizing Herbalism (4-part series)
  • Herbal Actions & Formulations
  • Astrological Herbalism
  • Introduction to Flower Essences
  • Tending to the Heart & Cardiovascular System
  • Natural Dyes 101
  • Herbal Extractions 101: Infusions, Decoctions, Syrups, Elixirs, Powders
  • Herbal Extractions 102: Tinctures, Glycerites, Vinegars
  • Herbal Extractions 103: Topicals, Bath & Bodycare
  • Food as Medicine
  • Digestive Health & Cleansing
  • First Aid in the Forest

Read more about these courses, and who's teaching them, here:

Note that we are still building our course descriptions and teacher bios, so at this point it is incomplete!

The program will culminate in a week-long herb camp for kids age 8-12, in which interns will assist with the setting up and operational flow of camp, as well as some teaching for those interested!

Overall, we aim to create an internship program that is rooted in accessibility and anti-oppression work. We take cultural appropriation seriously, and will strive to cultivate a culture of respect.


There are no direct costs associated with the program. Housing, education, and medicine-making supplies will be provided to interns. Interns will be largely responsible for providing their own food. The guesthouse will be stocked with some bulk items and essentials to get interns started, but otherwise there are grocery stores and a farmers market in town where interns can purchase other food items. 

To be considered for this internship:

  • First and foremost, you must love plants. No experience or training in herbalism is required, just a willingness to learn and a commitment to work hard.

  • Half of this program is working as a farmhand on a medicinal herb farm. It is an opportunity to learn some organic farming skills alongside our seasoned farmers. This internship is best suited to someone who likes working outdoors and getting dirty, and is happy doing physically demanding or repetitive labor. There will be a lot of walking, lifting, and bending over for extended periods of time. We will expect you to show up for work each morning on time and ready to follow the instructions that the farm manager will have for you.

  • You must actively enjoy living with other people from diverse backgrounds. If you have appreciation for people from all sexual orientations, gender identities, racial and cultural backgrounds, and physical and mental abilities, this program welcomes you. We aim to put together a group of emotionally mature, respectful, and culturally sensitive individuals. You should also keep in mind that you will be sharing a house with 4 other people, so if you have difficulty in shared spaces or with open, direct communication, this may not be for you.

If this sounds like your cup of tea, we would love to hear from you! Please fill out an internship application form and send to

Thank you!

Jed Thaggard

Education Coordinator


We currently have a full teaching calendar for our Summer 2018 program, but we welcome you to reach out at any point! Next year, we plan to expand our internship program to include multiple sessions, and will be seeking more educators to help us do that. We will gladly keep applications on file, and reach out as slots open up! 

While it is an herbal-focused program, we are hoping to offer our interns a well-rounded approach to holistic health and its intersection with environmental sustainability. Further, we are aiming to address issues related to access to healthcare in marginalized communities.

If you have skills in botany, herbalism, plant identification specific to this region, mycology, traditional crafts, ancient healing models, or any other earth-based topics you feel would augment this program, we would love to hear from you! Classes will be scheduled for 3-hour time slots on weekday evenings and select weekend mornings/afternoons, in Sandy, Oregon. Most classes will be taught to 6 students at an introductory level. Pay rate will be $40-50/hour DOE.

Please send a resume and brief cover letter, which outlines the following:

  • Who you are and what you do

  • What is your educational background, or where did you receive your training?

  • What is your experience with teaching?

  • If your proposal includes skills that originate from people native to this area, do you have tribal affiliations, or have you been granted permission from Native elders to teach them?

  • Do you have any examples of your work? (publications, blogs, website, Instagram, etc.)

Please also send your proposed course description and outline.

Materials can be sent to - and please also let me know if there are any questions you may have. Thank you for your interest in being a part of this program! We look forward to hearing from you!


Jed Thaggard

Education Coordinator