From the Ground Up: Beef Short Course Presented Online

Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 9:07 AM CDT|Updated: Aug. 6, 2020 at 9:09 AM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - About this time last year over 2300 ranchers rolled into town for Texas A&M’s Beef Short Course. With the outbreak of the Coronavirus consideration was given to cancelling this year’s event, but this year marked the 65th anniversary of the program that many ranchers have come to rely on it for continuing education in the Beef Industry. Jason Cleere has taken the lead on the short course for the last 16 years.

“It became evident from the university’s perspective that we wouldn’t be able to hold large crowds and even if we indicated social distancing and those types of things the Beef Cattle Short Course is designed to be pretty much the opposite of social distancing.”

Cleere made the decision in May not to cancel the Beef Short Course but to host it online. There are introductory sessions for beginners.

“And there are ways to capture more value and maximize the amount of value you get from working with your local livestock auctions. So we actually this morning we had a live presentation and feeder cattle demonstration where we were at a local livestock auction. And we talked about different qualities of cattle and producing cattle that fit the market but then also how you manage those cattle prior to that and also strategies to minimize shrink and those things. And that fits well for a new rancher.”

And nutrition is always an important topic to even the most seasoned rancher.

“They spent two and a half hours talking about different ways and different technology out there to really focus on the cost of feed ingredients and commodities and looking at some applications and tools that are available to really pinpoint and fine tune cow/calf supplemental nutrition programs.”

Cleere says that it’s gone off great but doesn’t see the online course replacing the old school Beef Short Course.

“I think the fellowship and the networking and that face to face, you cannot replace it through a computer screen and so next year I’ll be ready to get back to bring over 2000 of my friends back to College Station.

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