The Cornell Small Farms Program offers over twenty courses to help farmers improve their technical and business skills. Students connect with other farmers, work on farm plans, and gain practical tips without leaving their home. Course content can be accessed anywhere with a high-speed internet connection.
Most courses are six weeks long. Each week features an evening webinar and follow-up readings, videos, and activities. Students and their instructors connect through online forums and live chat. If you aren’t able to attend the webinars in real-time, they are always recorded for later viewing.
Classes starting the Week of September 25 include:
BF 101: Starting at Square One
This course helps new and aspiring farmers take the first steps toward setting goals, assessing resources available (physical, financial, and personal), and exploring enterprises that are the best fit for you and your land.
Carefully defining what you want to do and how you will do it is a key element of any successful new farm enterprise.
This course is taught by Erica Frenay (Shelterbelt Farm) and Steve Gabriel (Wellspring Forest Farm & School). Both also coordinate online courses for the small farms program.
BF 150: Farm Woodlot Management
Woodlots are a common feature of most farms in the eastern US, and are often overlooked for the value they might bring to the landowner and to farm enterprises.
During this course, we will examine the methods to assess forest resources and discuss common woodland activities such as cutting firewood, harvesting logs for mushroom cultivation, and support for wildlife and long-term forest health.
BF 204: Quickbooks for Farmers
This course is an introduction to QuickBooks, designed to provide an overview of the QuickBooks Pro software application.
It will cover the basic features, such as sales tax, inventory, invoicing, adjustments, and year-end procedures.
Each student will gain hands-on experience reproducing the exercises presented by the instructor.
Each course is $250, which entitles two people from a farm to attend.
Upon registering, you will receive a receipt with a link you can use to register the second person from your farm.
Check out the listings at http://smallfarms.cornell.edu/online-courses/ for more information on a particular course and the instructors.