May 21, 2018
Farm Credit of the Virginias (FCV) has recently partnered with the New Ag School (NAS) as a financial supporter for their innovative agricultural education program in Loudoun County, Virginia.
Loudoun currently encompasses 1,400 farms and rural businesses that provide more than $800 million annually to the local economy.
“The New Ag School seeks to build an educated workforce for our current ag economy and to empower the next generation of farm operators and agribusiness entrepreneurs,” says Doug Fabbioli, NAS president and a local vineyard and winery operator. “This support from Farm Credit of the Virginias is a significant step in helping us achieve that goal.”
Formed in 2015, the NAS delivers general and sector-specific workshops and learning modules combined with on-farm experience and mentoring. The program targets individuals seeking to enter agriculture as a first career as well as those interested in transitioning into agriculture from another career. To date, 15 Loudoun County residents, ranging from their late teens to mid- twenties, have benefitted from the NAS program.
“Farm Credit recognizes that to remain strong in the future, provide viable economic value to our communities and food on our tables, we need to develop a new generation of farmers, “says Marilyn Adams, Farm Credit Branch Manager in FCV’s Leesburg Branch Office in Loudoun County. “We see the New Ag School as an outstanding example of how to achieve that goal in Loudoun County.”
The FCV sponsorship, provided in part by the organization’s Knowledge Center, will be used to support the mentor-student program, a cornerstone of the NAS program. In addition, NAS participants will have access to the Knowledge Center’s new Ag Biz Basics, an online course for farmers.
Farm Credit of the Virginias provides over $1.8 billion dollars in financing to more than 10,000 farmers, agribusinesses and rural homeowners throughout Virginia, West Virginia and western Maryland. Farm Credit is a cooperative capitalized largely through investments made by farmers, ranchers and the rural homeowners and businesses that borrow from them. In Fact, as part of a nationwide network they are the largest single provider of agricultural credit in the United States and have been for 100 years. Farm Credit helps maintain and improve the quality of life in rural America and on the farm through its constant commitment to competitive lending, expert financial services and for facilitating and sharing knowledge and resources through the Farm Credit Knowledge Center. For more information, visit www.FarmCreditKnowledgeCenter.com or www.FarmCreditofVirginias.com.
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