Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Entrepreneurship Training Program for Beginning Missouri Farmers

Applications are now being accepted to the Winter 2011 cohort of the entrepreneurship training program for new and beginning Missouri farmers. The Entrepreneurship Project is designed to help beginning farmers develop an entrepreneurial approach to their farming operation. The intensive program includes 4 modules with site visits to innovative farm businesses in St. Louis, Kansas City, Columbia and the State of California. It also includes classroom sessions on identifying business opportunities, marketing and financing creative farm ventures.

Participants need to be beginning farmers (farming for less than 10 years) or interested in getting started farming. Young people who grew up on farms and are looking for ways to return to farming are welcome to apply—working on their family’s farm when growing up does not exclude them from the program. Both rural and urban farmers are encouraged to apply. Couples and farm partners are also welcome to apply, but each person who wishes to participate must complete the application materials and pay the refundable deposit. The application process is simple, and includes responding to the questions below.

You can find additional information on the project’s blog. Questions should be directed to Jill Lucht at or 573-884-3185. The application deadline has been extended until the cohort is filled. Applications will be given priority based on the date they are received.

Application Information:

1. Name, address, phone, email address:

2. Are you available for all of the dates required*?

January 19 – 22, 2011 St Louis
February 23 – 26, 2011 Kansas City
March 22-26, 2011 Sonoma Valley, California
May 18 – 21, 2011 Columbia

3. Why are you interested in participating in The Entrepreneurship Project? (Please describe your interest in approximately 100 words.)

4. What are you hoping to learn in The Entrepreneurship Project (approximately 100 words)?

5. Are you currently involved in farming? If YES, tell us about it.

6. Are you currently employed in a non-farm career? If yes, tell us about your current field.

7. Are there any particular small farm entrepreneurship opportunities (type of production, marketing, etc.) that you are interested in?

*The Entrepreneurship Project is pleased to underwrite the majority of costs associated with the four instructional modules, including hotel rooms, airfare to the California-based module, and the majority of meals during the modules. If a participant is unable to attend a module, the Entrepreneurship Project may still be billed for plane tickets, lodging, and other expenses. Therefore, we ask all persons accepted into the program to pay a refundable deposit of $400. Upon successful completion of the four modules, this deposit will be fully refunded. If a participant misses one or more modules, actual costs will be deducted and the remainder of the deposit, if any, will be refunded at the end of the course.

This project is supported by the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA, Grant # MO-SSCG1163.

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