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Learn Anything, Anywhere
Whether you’re looking to improve your bookkeeping skills, communicate better with your spouse, or grow the perfect tomato, there’s a webinar ready to teach you.
The Internet is full of information, but it’s not always accurate. That’s where university Extension comes in. Extension experts have always been go-to local sources for reliable information for the farm and family, and webinars let them share their knowledge in an interesting way with a much broader audience.
Often, these online seminars or workshops are scheduled ahead of time and attendees can watch and listen live, and even interact with the presenter by asking questions.
Since most webinars are archived, you can still watch and benefit from the presentation anytime, even if you can’t attend the live session. While viewing webinars is generally free on sites listed here, registration may be required.
The MidAtlantic Women in Agriculture, a project of the University of Maryland Extension, offers Wednesday Webinars the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month at noon EST. The webinars are free and open to anyone, but participants must register online (extension.umd.edu/event-series/women-agriculture-wednesday-webinars).
This year’s topics include protecting your health and the health of others on the farm, estate and transition planning, marketing your farm on social media, warning signs of emotional stress, egg production and sales, water use and reuse in agriculture, farm liability insurance, business emails, using Twitter, and Excel spreadsheets for farm use.
Dozens of archived webinars are also available from this group on a broad range of useful topics. They are organized into the categories of financial, human resources, legal, marketing, social media, and production.
Find a Webinar for Your Needs
The University of New Hampshire Extension offers several archived webinars on farm estate and succession planning (extension.unh.edu/tags/farm-estate-and-succession-planning). Topics include inheriting or passing on a farm, wills vs. trusts, long-term health care, and gifts vs. selling as a means of transferring farm assets.
Allan Vyhnalek and Jim Jansen of the University of Nebraska Extension hosted a two-part webinar series, So You’ve Inherited a Farm, Now What? The webinars (agecon.unl.edu/farm-succession) cover land management, transitions, succession planning, deciding whether to keep or sell the farm, leasing, legal considerations, and managing family communication and expectations.
The University of Minnesota Extension, American Agri-Women, and the Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center recently completed a webinar series geared toward helping women in agriculture cultivate resiliency and weather stress (americanagriwomen.org/webinars/). Topics include building and maintaining relationships in stressful times and increasing your joy while living the farm life. Other web-inars archived on this site include self-care tips for reducing stress, managing the farm checkbook, farm record keeping, and maintaining a work-life balance.
Purdue University Extension’s Women in Agriculture website (ag.purdue.edu/extension/wia/pages/webinars.aspx) includes webinars on family finances, diversifying the farm, buy-sell agreements, crop budgets, resistant weed management, family stress, herb gardening, easy meals to take to the field, and preserving produce.
Iowa State University Extension has many webinars available for gardeners (extension.iastate.edu/mastergardener/webinars), with new sessions added on a regular basis. Archived topics include attracting local bees, composting, invasive insects, tree care, starting seeds, growing transplants, and container gardens.
Combating Opioids, an ongoing webinar series from Purdue University Extension and the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development (canr.msu.edu/ncrcrd/webinars/rural_health_and_safety_education), aims to prevent opioid misuse and abuse in rural communities and increase the public health knowledge of the opioid crisis. Archived topics include how adverse childhood experiences drive the opioid epidemic, how promoting mental health can prevent opioid overdoses, the impact of the opioid crisis on rural hospitals, and the social determinants and related despair caused by drug overdoses in rural America.
The eXtension Foundation, a nonprofit group embedded in the U.S. Cooperative Extension System, offers several webinars focusing on farm safety. Manure gas safety, joint stress and injury protection, youth farm safety, OSHA requirements, and tractor safety are all covered in archived webinars (articles.extension.org/farm_safety_and_health).
Learn More with Online Classes
While webinars are perfect for topics that can be covered in an hour or so, there are some things that require more time.
AgriLife Extension and Texas A&M University are offering a series of free online health-related courses focusing on common illnesses and disease prevention.
“Diabetes, for example, is a growing problem among Texans and throughout the nation, so we have developed an online, self-paced course on the basics of diabetes self-management,” says Ninfa Pena-Purcell with AgriLife Extension. “This course is especially useful for those who have been newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes or those wanting to know more about diabetes self-care.”
The courses were designed to be taken at the user’s pace. “Most course content sections are less than one page in length, and you can leave a course and return anytime,” Pena-Purcell says.
Most of the courses are free, but if a certificate of completion is requested, there may be a processing fee.
Visit extensiononline.tamu.edu/faqs/ for more information and to see a complete list of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension online health and wellness courses.