People Generation Next Our Turn to Ranch

At the conclusion of the Generation Next: Our Turn to Ranch course, participants receive a certificate and T-shirt.

The Generation Next: Our Turn to Ranch online course is open for registration. The 12-week program, offered by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, runs from Jan. 24-April 17.

The cost is $300, and preregistration is required at The series is limited to the first 100 registrants.

The program requires approximately two hours of participation per week, but participants can complete the lessons and activities at any time. A computer with internet access is required.

Our Turn to Ranch is an online school in which participants work toward developing a business plan with the support of professionals who specialize in each field and topic. At the end of the series, participants will receive a Generation Next T-shirt and certificate.

“The Generation Next curriculum targets new landowners, those who are inheriting land or those who are looking to start a new agricultural operation on an existing ranch,” said Megan Clayton, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension range specialist, who organizes the series with Annette Cayard, Generation Next program coordinator, both based in Corpus Christi.

Our Turn to Ranch topics

The topics covered include the following:

  • How to start an agricultural business.
  • Understanding business taxes.
  • Insurance needs for your ranch.
  • Tracking your finances.
  • Evaluating your land resources.
  • How to set up grazing and wildlife management leases.
  • Basic ranch laws – fencing, water, etc.
  • Land management techniques.
  • Alternative operations and direct marketing.
  • Setting goals with measurable objectives for success.

Inspiration, impact

Ranching can feel like an overwhelming experience, whether it’s dealing with the need to take over a family run operation for aging parents or starting an operation from square one.

In post-event surveys, one participant stated the class made her think of ways to make her business profitable and helped put her on the path to success. Another said the class was very beneficial in opening up conversations with the older generation, and that was really appreciated.

“Annette and I are trying to make Generation Next a personal experience to empower landowners, not an online course they just check-off as having taken,” Clayton said. “The comments I read from participants affirm that Generation Next is the single best thing I do in my position.”

Another participant said he would, “100% recommend this if you are an aspiring Texas farmer, or future or current landowner. I hope Generation Next is still around when my future children are ready to consider their mission in life.”

Another participant stated at the conclusion of the 12 weeks he had a notebook full of notes, a hard drive full of pdfs and web resources, and a fully fleshed-out business plan.

“These folks really want you to succeed, and their actions show that,” he said adding that Generation Next “connected me with so many invaluable resources that I had no idea existed and exposed me to ideas and concepts in agriculture and business that I would not have considered or researched on my own.”

For additional information, contact Clayton at or by phone at 361-265-9203.