The Grazing School of the West offers multidisciplinary vocational training, peer exchange, technical assistance, and professional development for individuals working within livestock and land management. Our mission is to support and promote individuals utilizing prescribed livestock grazing as a land stewardship methodology.
GSW has three main areas of focus in order to support the burgeoning field of prescribed grazing and to empower a new kind of land and livestock manager adept in the intersection of stewardship, project management and stockmanship.
TRAIN: New and Beginning Ranchers, Livestock and Land Manager Training
All training falls into one of our three main areas of teaching:
LAND: To educate emerging farmers, ranchers, grazers and land stewards in the practice and theory of regenerative rangeland management skills, incorporating wildlife ecology, soil & plant sciences and watershed systems
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY: To support and build productive livestock operations with ethical and humane animal husbandry practices
BUSINESS & COMMUNITY: To train students to become empowered entrepreneurs and community members who recognize the potential for economic development via place-based businesses.
Provide practical and business skills needed to pursue a career in land-based stockman/womanship through either entrepreneurial endeavors or employment with established livestock or grazing operations, public agencies or land management businesses.
Provide direct training for individuals looking to create livelihoods in the field in partnership with expert educators, fellow resource providers and/or colleague organizations.
CONVENE: Practitioner Gathering & Community Building
Host and mediate gatherings to promote camaraderie for this (re)burgeoning field of professionals by facilitating gatherings and communication platforms that promote community building, skill exchange, and personal connectivity.
Social media, original content production, guest lectures and speaking engagements to create collective messaging for the ranching and grazing community with the goal of raising general public awareness as well as attracting new participants to the field.
Reviving a defunct national directory that catalogues western graziers in operation and available for contract work, and connects active graziers to land managers in need of grazing.
Assist in the creation and expansion of market opportunities for livestock producers in direct marketing meat, fiber, hide and leather products to both retail and wholesale channels.
Assist in connection to land and contract access through strategic partnerships with land linkage organizations, public agencies, funders, and federal, state, or private landowners.
When appropriate, participate in advocacy and activism in support of legislation that is fundamental to the work.
PROVIDE: Technical Assistance & Consulting
Provide consulting, advising, and project management services for the development and execution of prescribed grazing projects and regenerative land stewardship on private and public properties.
Focus on underutilized western landscapes, specifically urban and peri urban communities, to introduce prescribed grazing as fire abatement tool to local, regional, and state agencies working to maintain and protect municipal lands.
Help cement foundation for future grazing contracts that GSW participants can step into as operators.
new, beginning or hopeful ranchers, livestock and land managers
seasoned or transitioning land and livestock practitioners
professionals and public agencies working in the land management field
Consulting, advising, and project management services for the development and execution of prescribed grazing projects and regenerative land stewardship on private and public properties.
Training/Orientations/Presentations: Prescribed Grazing 101
Prescribed Grazing Program & Business Development
Assets to create organizational infrastructure for prescribed grazing programs
Includes comprehensive and practical instruction of using livestock as a tool on both public and private landscapes for:
fire hazard abatement
livestock integrated crop systems, ie. vineyards, orchards, crop stubble fields
solar panel vegetation management
invasive species management
soil remediation projects
entrepreneurialism in land-based business working with livestock
ecologically-minded land stewardship and succession
building of soil organic carbon
stacked enterprise production (meat, milk, fiber, hides)
Curriculum and content for both training and technical assistance includes instruction of using prescriptive grazing strategies as a tool for both public and private landscapes maintenance, and animal husbandry methodologies interwoven with research, monitoring, and documentation.
Curriculum is geared towards new and beginning ranchers, graziers and livestock managers and combines animal husbandry with methods and strategies for the business of ranching, contract grazing, food and fiber production, product and service marketing, and ecologically-minded, conservation-centric land stewardship.
Curriculum is designed and delivered by GSW stakeholders as well as a network of expert educators and professionals in their fields.