Thursday, October 8, 2009

Here's a farm program where we can all make money

A secret from a past life caught up with me today. I discovered that the University of Idaho Extension Service is launching a new free financial planning course online. Big whoop, you say.

Not many people realize that the U.S. Agriculture Department and a network of state colleges and universities that form what's known as the Cooperative Extension System offers top flight, free do-it-yourself financial planning online. Extension is a free, national non-degree educational network organized more than a century ago to show farmers ways to raise bigger crops and healthier animals.

Extension was just getting into financial planning about the time I switched from being a farm and agribusiness reporter to covering personal finance. The two disciplines aren't that different. People I meet in either one have lots to do and not enough time or money to do it. I just don't use the word bushels as much as I once did.

Rutgers - yes, it is still a farm school - did some of the early work and produced a classic curriculum that is yours for the click of a mouse.

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