; MAST (Management, Analysis, & Strategic Thinking) A Distance Education Program | Conferences | AgRisk Library


Conference Name MAST (Management, Analysis, & Strategic Thinking) A Distance Education Program

Kevin Dhuyvetter


MAST (Management, Analysis and Strategic Thinking) is an intensive, challenging farm and risk management educational program. MAST combines face-to-face workshops with state-of-the-art distance education technology to deliver a high-quality educational experience to today’s busy and geographically isolated farm managers. The primary target audience is progressive managers seeking education beyond what is typical of one- to two-day programs. It is also aimed at professionals that support agriculture,such as lenders and accountants.

The first on-campus session focuses on goal setting and establishing camaraderie between participants. Over the next four months through distance technology, participants work through seven modules: Land, Machinery, Finance, Human Resources, Tax/Policy Management, Risk Management, and Marketing. On-Campus Session Two is a two-day, capstone event allowing participants to apply the concepts and decision-making tools taught throughout the course to their operations. Additionally, they begin to develop an individualized business plan.

Upon completion, participants evaluate their overall experience. The most telling evaluative statistics are that 98 percent of past class participants would recommend the MAST program to others. Participants agreed that MAST was worth the time invested in the program (4.53 with 1 being strongly disagree, 3 being neutral, and 5 being strongly agree) and was worth the dollars invested in the program (4.38). They also indicated MAST helped them to better understand their competition (4.15), make more profitable decisions for their business (4.44), and make better risk management decisions for their business (4.26).