Training Programs Overview
VCIH offers two intensive learning opportunities which are hosted here in Montpelier, Vermont, and in surrounding areas in Central Vermont. Classes run on a calendar year, beginning the third week in January and ending the second week in December. There are two weeks off in April, three weeks off in August, and a week off for Thanksgiving.
Generally, classes in the first year are held on Wednesdays; the second year on Thursday and Friday (with field, apothecary and clinical observation work at other times); and the third year on Monday and Tuesday (with clinical work at other times).
If you are interested in shorter, less intensive courses, please see the community classes section of this website.
1-Year Family Herbalist training program—302 hours
A stand-alone program for the beginning or intermediate herbal student, with over 300 hours of training in the basic sciences and the art of understanding the energetics of plants and people. During the summer months, we will spend as much time as possible outdoors, visiting diverse Vermont ecosystems, working in the woods and fields, and preparing herbal medicines. By the end of the year, the student will have a solid foundation in traditional herbalism, both theoretical and practical, along with a background in botany, plant chemistry and human physiology. Read more
3-Year Clinical Herbalist training program—1302 hours
VCIH offers beginning herbal students a comprehensive 3-year Clinical Herbalist training program that prepares them for work in the community clinic and with their own personal clients. The first year of classes offers a thorough introduction to the herbal arts and sciences, and can be taken by itself as our Family Herbalist course. Those interested in developing clinical skills can then continue through Years 2 & 3.
Year 1 — This year is a combination of hands-on apprenticeship and didactic time in the classroom, providing both direct experience with the plants and medicine-making and foundational knowledge in holistic physiology, botany, energetic systems, and materia medica. Read more
Year 2 — This year will focus on understanding system dysfunctions (both energetically and physiologically), developing critical thinking and clinical strategies, and grounding in the skills of a practitioner. Read more
Year 3 — This year brings the learning from the first two years to the clinical relationship. Primarily, the student will see clients under supervision in the community clinics, while also developing a business plan for their future work as an herbalist, and practice sharing their knowledge through community teaching. Read more