The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will conduct their final “Generation Next: Our Turn to Ranch School” program June 4-5 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center, north of San Angelo on U.S. Highway 87.

The curriculum, which was taught at two other Texas sites in recent months, targets adult children and grandchildren of landowners who want to get involved in the family ranch, said Dr. Morgan Russell, AgriLife Extension range specialist at San Angelo.

“The school targets those interested in starting a profitable agricultural enterprise, since  staying connected to the family ranch is hard when the prospect of making a profit from ranching seems remote,” Russell said. “The San Angelo school was first slated last winter but had to be postponed due to freezing weather. I’m confident that won’t occur now.”

Russell said most heirs depend on careers far removed from production agriculture, making it difficult for them to return to the ranch once their parents or grandparents retire.

“Too often, the eventual outcome is to sell the property, a circumstance we hope to help avert by offering educational opportunities such as these to help heirs consider profitable enterprises to supplement the existing ranching operations,” she said. “This two-day school offers a good start for those wanting to stay involved with their family’s ranching business.”

Individual registration is $100, and college student registration is $75. The fee includes two days of classes presented by expert instructors, a resource notebook and a jump drive containing resource publications and materials. It also includes five meals and a certificate of completion.

Registration will be limited to 50 participants.

Russell said the first day will deal with starting a new business. The agenda will include drafting effective wildlife and livestock leases, marketing agricultural products and protecting the ranch assets through insurance and tax knowledge.

The second day will cover proven land management techniques, ecotourism and alternative ranching options.

Specific topics will include:

  • How to start an agricultural business.
  • Understanding business taxes.
  • Marketing your produce and yourself.
  • Using technology to your benefit.
  • How to set up grazing and wildlife management leases.
  • Multi-generational ranching.
  • Understanding market fluctuations.
  • Land management techniques.
  • Coping with invasive species.
  • Alternative operations to add to the business.

To register, go to agriliferegister.tamu.edu/ESSM or call 979-845-2604.