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There are all sorts of colleges or programs that you can enroll to become a farmer, and these vary depending on where you live. In the U.S., your local ag college is a good place to start, where you can enroll in an agricultural certificate or degree in different sectors that you are most interested in and wish to carry through as a future farmer. You can also contact your local county extension office for other information pertaining to your area or the area where you are interested in farming, to get things like soil quality or soil type maps, types of vegetation for grazing livestock, best types of crops to grow on your land, stocking rates and carrying capacity for grazing livestock, the list goes on. In Canada, at least in Alberta, there's a Green Certificate program put out by the Alberta government to assist in future farmers on getting a hands-on learning experience with different sectors of the agricultural industry, from crop farming to chicken farming to even learning how to look after horses. There are also colleges that have agricultural certification or degree courses, for instance Lakeland College here in Alberta in Vermillion has courses on cow-calf, sheep and dairy operations, as well as cropping practices, among other things. You just have to look around to find what you are interested in and do some research.

Now, if you are born and raised a farm kid and have goals to take over your parent's farm, you don't really need an education to start since you would have your folks to help you along the way, however it is nice to have a college or university degree under your belt, as well as personal farming experience. Experience takes you a lot further than an educational certificate or degree in farming. See, the things that they teach you in school basically can be applied to your farm, but other things can be thrown at you that you don't even expect and that your instructors haven't taught you to deal with; these things include financial troubles and mechanical troubles, as well as the curve-balls that Mother Nature likes to throw at farmers from time to time. Sitting at a desk and reading about farming isn't the same as actually doing it. That's where hands-on experience can be so valuable its difficult to describe! For instance, its easy to read about the flight-zone of cattle and how to work them into an alleyway to get them into the chute, but it's totally different when you've got some dumb son of a guns that won't go in no matter how impatient you get or how many tricks you try that your trusty book has told you to do. That book tells it like every cow is the same, with the same personality and behaviour and yaddi-yadda. But in the real world, every cow has a different personality and different ways of handling stimuli such as you herding them into the alleyway. You see what I mean? Same goes with horses, pigs, sheep, etc. Even every piece of machinery has their own glitches and "personalities".

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2009-12-24 18:33:09
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Q: What education or training do you need to become a farmer?
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