University of Vermont

Aspiring Farmers Invited To Sign Up For Growing Places

Burlington--The University of Vermont (UVM) Extension's New Farmer Program is now accepting applications for its popular Growing Places course, which starts in October at two locations. An early bird discount of 25 percent is available to anyone who registers by Sept. 8.

The course will offer a realistic perspective on what it takes to operate an agricultural business to allow aspiring farmers to decide if agriculture is the right choice for them. Anyone interested in starting a farm, specialty food business or other agriculture-related enterprise is welcome to enroll in the course, which will be held Oct. 8, 15, 22 and 29 at the UVM Extension Office, 655 Spear St., Burlington and the Vital Communities Office, 195 North Main St., White River Junction. Classes run from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

The deadline for registration is Sept. 22. The fee is $150 ($110 if paid by Sept. 8). Registrations received after that date will be subject to a $25 late fee. Scholarships are available for qualified applicants.

To register or for more information about the course, visit www.uvm.edu/newfarmer. Click on "Classes," then "Growing Places." To request a disability-related accommodation to participate, please contact Jessie Schmidt at (802) 223-2389, ext. 203, or (866) 860-1382 (toll-free in Vermont) by Sept. 22.

The course will help students set goals for themselves and their potential business, identify and examine current resources and explore market research techniques to develop a customized marketing plan. 

Information will be provided on state and federal agricultural programs and organizations that offer assistance and support to farmers as well as other resources.

Growing Places also will be offered as an online course (January and February 2014). Several additional courses for beginning farmers are planned including Taking Stock (November 2013), Building a Sustainable Business (December 2013), Whole Farm Planning for Beginning Women Farmers (January 2014) and Introduction to Ag Financial Management (February 2014). For more information, visit the UVM Extension New Farmer Program web site at www.uvm.edu/newfarmer or contact newfarmer@uvm.edu.