The 44 Farms International Beef Cattle Academy is accepting applications for its 2020/21 online certification programme. Applications for this comprehensive certificate programme, through Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, open 20 June and are due 15 August.

“We’ve developed the strongest course offerings paired with industry-leading experts, and we anticipate our third programme year to build on the success of the previous two years,” says Reinaldo Cooke, programme co-ordinator and associate professor at Texas A&M University. “Students can quickly apply class learnings to their operation or business – that’s an instant return on investment.”

Prospective students should apply as soon as possible. An ideal student candidate is eager to learn and is passionate about driving the industry forward. Class size for the prestigious academy is limited to offer an exclusive and customised learning experience. The academy’s online learning format allows anyone from across the globe to participate.

First-hand experience

Students currently enrolled in 2019/20 offered these perspectives for future attendees:

  • “Because the classes are set up to be flexible, it’s really ideal for students who work during the day. I spend most of my day on the farm, so being able to participate at my own pace makes it much more valuable and worthwhile.” – Kazakhstan student
  • “For me and my operation, International Beef Cattle Academy has been a real game-changer. The materials and classes have opened my mind for so many opportunities and new approaches in our business.” – South American student
  • “It is very interesting that you can watch all of these classes online, access all the material and then be face to face with the speaker to ask anything about those things you learned.” – Kazakhstan student
  • “My favourite course was the one about nutrition, but all of the courses were very valuable. I was able to learn even more than I did from my college classes.” – Romanian student
  • “It is one thing to read about beef production, but when you put things into practice, you are going to have questions related to your specific operation. Having the opportunity to ask your questions to industry experts is incredibly valuable, and my favourite thing about the course.” – Kazakhstan student

What to expect

The 44 Farms International Beef Cattle Academy consists of eight courses at 30 learning hours per course. Classes are taught online with pre-recorded lectures. In addition to the pre-recorded lectures, there is a weekly interactive session for the student and instructor. The one-on-one sessions are customised based on individual student needs, says Ky Pohler, programme co-ordinator and assistant professor at Texas A&M University.

Course topics include:

  • Cattle welfare and behaviour.
  • Forage production and utilisation.
  • Nutritional management and requirements.
  • Reproductive physiology and management.
  • Breeding and genetics.
  • Immunology and herd health management.
  • Safety of beef products.
  • Carcass and beef quality.

Following online coursework, the academy typically concludes with an optional residency period and graduation ceremony in College Station, Texas.

“The ability to participate virtually also provides peace of mind amid times of global health concerns,” says Pohler. “With two years of experience in conducting the academy online, our team knows what it takes to provide participants with the full value of this educational opportunity without sacrificing the opportunity for a first-rate experience.”

Scholarships available

New for the 2020/21 programme, scholarships are available for interested individuals. The scholarship opportunities will help extend participation in the academy to a broader audience, covering up to 70% of tuition costs.

The next academy begins in September 2020 and continues through August 2021. Apply today at animalscience.tamu.edu/ibca/ or email ibca@tamu.edu for more information.

Texas A&M, established in 1876 as the first public university in Texas, is one of the nation’s largest universities with more than 66 000 students and more than 440 000 living alumni residing in over 150 countries around the world. A tier-one university, Texas A&M holds the rare triple land-, sea- and space-grant designation. Research conducted at Texas A&M represented annual expenditures of more than $905,4 million in fiscal year 2017.

Texas A&M’s research creates new knowledge that provides basic, fundamental and applied contributions resulting, in many cases, in economic benefits to the state, nation and world. The school’s Lead by Example campaign is a comprehensive effort to raise $4 billion by the year 2020, making it the largest higher education campaign in Texas history and the second largest conducted nationally by a public university. Aggies are known for their deep commitment to the success of each other and their strong desire to serve. – Press release, Texas A&M University