Minority small farmers including African-Americans and Native Americans have expressed a desire to investigate alternative agricultural enterprises, especially meat goat production. However, these farmers are ill equipped with the management knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA) to succeed in this alternative enterprise. Langston University, which has the nation´s foremost goat research program, established a Summer Institute of goat management workshops for minority farmers. The Summer Institute consisted of seven all-day workshops held approximately every other week over the course of the summer at four different locations within the state. Traditional instructional delivery systems were complemented with experiential learning through supervised hands-on sessions with live animals. At the end of the seven-workshop series, participants could receive a Certificate of Participation or a Certificate of Achievement depending upon their eligibility. To receive a Certificate of Participation, participants had to have attended at least 4 of the 7 workshops; 135 participants received this certificate. To receive a Certificate of Achievement, participants had to have received a Certificate of Participation and pass a comprehensive exam; all 16 participants taking the exam passed and received this certificate. Participants at 3 of the 4 locations have organized and have formally applied to Heifer Project for livestock assistance. Follow-up and mentoring of these groups is continuing. Through the Summer Institute minority farmers have learned the KSA needed to succeed in meat goat production, an alternative agriculture enterprise suitable for part-time farmers with small acreages, both of which are characteristic of minority farmers.
|Conference||2005 National Extension Risk Management Education Conference|