The Pork Checkoff introduced three new distance-learning programs at World Pork Expo in Des Moines, Iowa, Thursday. These programs include the Production Series, the Manager Series and the Customizable Employee Training Series.
"These new programs combine the current distance learning courses with new courses to maximize learning and minimize downtime," says Jim Lummus, curriculum director for the Pork Checkoff. "The end result is a concise distance learning package for producers with more information on fewer CD's."
The Pork Checkoff's Production Series, a four-disc set, is designed for those people who are new to the pork industry. The series also works well as a refresher for seasoned veterans. The first disc includes a bilingual English/Spanish versions of the new Farrowing Management course, the new Grower Finisher Management course and the Nursery Management course. The new Your Role as a Swine Caretaker course, Biosecurity in Pork Production and Effective Handling of Pigs is included in the second bilingual disc. The third disc is a bilingual DVD on the Pork Production Safety System. The final disc in the Production Series includes the new Swine Disease Recognition and Treatment course, the Breeding and Gestation Management, Ventilation Management, the On Farm Euthanasia of Swine and the Pig Husbandry and Stockmanship.
The Pork Checkoff's Manager Series, a two-disc set, includes resources for those in need of help with people development as well as a set of financial and business- management decision tools. The people development includes the new Swine Caretaker course, the Human Resources Management course and the bilingual Pork Production Safety System course. The decision tools include the new Financial Analysis tool, the Sow Housing Alternatives Calculator and the Troubleshooting Production and Financial Benchmarks.
"The new Pork Checkoff distance-learning programs expand education to the farm," says Leon Sheets, a pork producer from Ionia, Iowa and chair of the Pork Checkoff's Producer Services Committee. "These programs make it possible for producers and their employees to learn on their own schedule."
The Pork Checkoff developed a suite of electronic employee training tools for pork producers and employee training managers. The bilingual Customizable Employee Training Series includes the new Your Role as a Swine Caretaker course, the new Farrowing Management course, the new Nursery Management Course, the new Grower Finisher Management course, the Pork Production Safety System course and the Biosecurity in Pork Production course.
"These customizable tools allow a producer or trainer to create their own branded, operation-specific training materials and repackage them to use in their operation," says Lummus.
All the new Pork Checkoff distance-learning courses are available at no cost to U.S. pork producers by calling the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-PORK or at pork.org.