To meet increased interest and demand, GEAPS and Kansas State University have worked diligently to create a program that is expanding each year in scope and value, and 2013 is no exception. Program planners are adding four new courses and updating another, and it’s also likely to see its first students earn the new Grain Operations Management Credential.
The credentialing program, which began in 2012, adds an important dimension to the distance education program. This is the industry’s only credential in the field of grain operations, and allows professionals the ability to enhance their careers and validate the knowledge they have gained through distance education courses. Participants will find that the credentialing program offers them systematic routes to achieve professional development goals, college credit and industry-wide recognition for initiative. In addition, the credential enhances qualifications for promotion and taking on additional responsibilities. Besides benefiting professionals on an individual basis, the credentialing program offers the grain industry an organized, meaningful and inexpensive way to train new employees and enhance job skills of existing employees, as well as resolve the need to identify and cultivate the next generation of grain operations professionals.
On April 22, GEAPS is launching the last course needed to earn the credential, GEAPS 500: Introduction to Grain Operations. It’s geared for people who are new to the industry or who need to learn the basics of grain handling. No other course like it exists anywhere.
The five other courses required to obtain the credential are: GEAPS 510: Facilities Planning & Design I; GEAPS 520: Grain Quality Management; GEAPS 530: Quality Management Systems; GEAPS 540: Safety and Management for Grain Facilities; and GEAPS 550: Materials Handling I. Recognizing the value, three companies have indicated they plan to have groups of their grain operations employees pursue the credential, and as word travels among the industry, enrollment in these courses has steadily increased.
Along with the addition of the credential, the number of distance education courses has increased in the last few years. We offered 12 courses in 2011, and 14 in 2012. This year, we’ll be offering 19 and next year 21. As noted, the growth is driven by demand and interest. Over 60 professionals registered for the first course of 2013, the recently updated GEAPS 520: Grain Quality Management. The four new distance education courses being offered in 2013 are: GEAPS 500: Introduction to Grain Operations; GEAPS 510: Facilities Planning & Design I; GEAPS 544: Preventing Grain Dust Explosions; and GEAPS 555: Grain Elevator Equipment Maintenance II.
Distance education gives working adults the flexibility to achieve educational objectives from their home or work as everything can be finished online. There is a variety of subject matter for interested individuals to peruse. Of immediate interest may be two courses beginning March 18 and the introductory course starting April 22:
GEAPS 525: Management of Insect Pests
Registration closes March 12.
This course focuses on insect pests associated with stored grain, and provides fundamental knowledge required to manage insect infestations using practical nonchemical and chemical methods.
GEAPS 540: Safety Management for Grain Facilities
Registration closes March 12.
The goal of the five-week course will be to enhance the basic knowledge and skills of operations management staff in order to minimize the most significant worker safety and health risks in the industry.
GEAPS 500: Introduction to Grain Operations
Registration opens March 20 and closes April 16.
This course provides basic but comprehensive information about operations at grain facilities, and serves as an introduction to new hires, students and others in need of beginner-level training. Stressing safety, it focuses on how grain moves through a facility, and covers main elevator types, components and equipment, grain receiving, sampling and testing, housekeeping and maintenance, fumigation, outbound procedures and other fundamental grain facility functions.