Agbiz Masters Startright Education

AgBiz Masters

A Learning Series for Young, Beginning and Minority Farmers

Are you ready to take your business to the next level? But are you so busy that you can't imagine how you could find time to improve your operation and expand your business skills?

Then the AgBiz Masters program is perfect for you.

What is it?

AgBiz Masters is an interactive educational learning series, designed specifically for young, beginning and minority farmers interested in honing their business and financial management skills. The program takes a blended learning approach where participants complete on-demand eLearning modules and activities, coupled with face-to-face regional seminars that are led by local industry experts.

Couples and business partners are encouraged to enroll in the program together to gain the most value from the training.

What does AgBiz Masters program involve?

AgBiz Masters is a two-year series, but you only enroll in one year of the program at a time (we know you're busy; this gives you maximum flexibility for your schedule).

All courses are offered through Farm Credit University, and were developed with Dr. David Kohl, a Professor Emeritus at Virginia Tech.

Each module is interactive and online, and takes approximately one hour to complete. In addition to the modules which can be completed on your schedule, you will participate in online discussion forums and exams, and complete individual assignments.

You also will attend two face-to-face learning sessions, which are held regionally throughout MidAtlantic's territory (which includes Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia).

These one-day sessions are designed to supplement the online learning materials and allow discussions and feedback among participants and facilitators. Webcasts and webinars will also be used to make the learning experience even more interactive.

AgBiz Masters Program Topics

Year One

  • Megatrends of agriculture
  • Strategic business planning
  • Preparing for your lender
  • Constructing a balance sheet
  • Constructing an income statement and cash flow projection

Year Two

  • Understanding lending decisions
  • Farm business management factors and benchmarks
  • Growth and transition management
  • Communication, ethics and leadership

Why should you participate?

AgBiz Masters is a new approach to meeting the unique needs of today's young, beginning and minority farmers (the program was designed for all farmers/prospective farmers eligible for MidAtlantic's StartRight Loan Programs. For complete eligibility requirements, please see our StartRight program information).

If you're looking for a hands-on educational program that tackles the questions and challenges you have in managing your agricultural business, AgBiz Masters is your answer.

Educational modules were created specifically for this program, and address issues in the agricultural industry as well as critical business management topics. Since all the modules are available online, you can access the materials via the web at your convenience. Regional seminars offer additional learning opportunities from peers in the program.

How much does it cost?

The registration fee is $225. You may be eligible for a partial reimbursement of the cost after completion of the course, based on available scholarships.

The registration fee covers single operators, as well as couples and/or business partners who would like to participate in the program.

Do I need high speed internet access?

High speed internet access is necessary to view the online modules.

If you are interested in the program, but do not have access to high speed internet, contact Sandy Wieber at 800.333.7950, or swieber@mafc.com. She can help you find high speed internet locations in your area so that you can complete the AgBiz Masters course.

When does the program begin?

The registartion period for the program runs from August 15 through October 31.