Young Farmer Business Development Program
Established in 2016, Kansas Corn Corps serves as young farmer business development program. Participants engage in networking, learn more about the corn industry and develop new business skills that will benefit their own operations in the future.
The program consists of four sessions that take place over a 16-month period. Three of the four sessions take place in Kansas and one takes place outside of Kansas. These sessions are on the weekends to accommodate for work schedules, except for the domestic trip.
Corn Corps has three main focus areas:
- You: How do you fit into your farm and move forward as an individual?
- Your Farm: How does your farm fit into the industry and continue to be successful?
- Your Industry: What opportunities and hurdles will the corn industry face in the future and how can you move the corn industry forward?
Speakers at the sessions will challenge participants and push them to think critically. The topics related to the three focuses areas are set by the Kansas Corn team, but participants provide input. This is the participants’ opportunity to engage with the industry, learn new business skills; therefore it is a highly interactive participant-directed program.
Each Corn Corps class provides the opportunity for up to ten farms to participate.
Corn Corps Class 5 Application
Class 5 applications are not yet available. If you are interested in participating in the next Corn Corps class please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get in touch with you when the application process opens.
Each Application must include the following to be considered:
- Completed application form with current KCGA membership
- Applicants must be involved in a corn-farming operation
- Three-year memberships are available for $110
- Two reference forms completed by non-family members
Must attend all 4 sessions, dates for Class 5 are TBD.
Couples or individuals between the ages of 21-45 are encouraged to apply. For couples, you must each complete an application and each hold a KCGA membership. We realize some of the answers will be the same.
Current Class- Class 4
The Kansas Corn Corps Class 4 participants are listed below with their names, farming operations and hometowns.
Thank you to Corn Corps Class 4 sponsors Farm Credit Associations of Kansas and KCoe Isom.
Amy Elliott Elliott Farms Inc. Hiawatha, KS
Mathew Elliott Elliott Farms Inc. Hiawatha, KS
Cate Galligan Wehkamp Farms Ingalls, KS
Jenny Goering Goering Farms Galva, KS
Brett Grauerholz Grauerholz Farms LLC Republic, KS
Madison Mackley Mackley Farms Winona, KS
Evan Porter Porter Family Ag Fredonia, KS
Zach Vincent Vincent Farms Long Island, KS
Alex Vosburgh Vosburgh Farms Macksville, KS
Karlee Vosburgh Vosburgh Farms Macksville, KS
Corn Corps Graduates
Since 2016, three classes have completed Kansas Corn Corps.
- Kelby Adams, Macksville
- Nicole Adams, Macksville
- Derek Belton, Tampa
- Shawn Geffert, Humboldt
- Kylee Geffert, Humboldt
- Jay Ostmeyer, Manhattan
- Hayes Kelman, Dodge City
- Shelby Kelman, Dodge City
- Nathan Simshauser, Lakin
- Jessica Simshauser, Lakin
- Matt Symns, Atchison
- Stephanie Symns, Atchison
- David Allen, Smith Cattle Company, Sharon Springs, KS
- Alicia Allen, Smith Cattle Company, Sharon Springs, KS
- Ben Bellar, Bellar Farm Inc., Howard, KS
- Hayden Guetterman, Guetterman Brothers Family Farms, Bucyrus, KS
- Sarah Ellison, Marquette, KS
- Garrett Kennedy, Knopf Farms/ Tri-Valley Seed & Services, Gypsum, KS
- Arissa Kennedy, Knopf Farms/ Tri-Valley Seed & Services, Gypsum, KS
- Kyler Millershaski, MK Farms, Lakin, KS
- Chris Ostmeyer, Ostmeyer Family Farms, Park City, KS
- Tanner McNinch, McNinch Farms, Ness City, KS
- Krystale Neitzel, Bismark Farm, Lawrence, KS
- Lowell Neitzel, Bismark Farm, Lawrence, KS
- Brandon Heier, Haier Farms and Twin H. Cattle Company LLC, Grainfield, KS
- JD Hanna, Hanna Farms, Silver Lake, KS
- Matt Splitter, Splitter Farms, Lyons, KS
- Janna Splitter, Splitter Farms, Lyons, KS
- Geoff Burgess, Burgess Hill Farms, Sterling, KS
- Jenny Burgess, Burgess Hill Farms, Sterling, KS
- Coby Baalman, Baalman Farms, Menlo, KS
- Megan Baalman, Baalman Farms, Menlo, KS
We have moved to an all online application to simplify the process.
Please direct your references to this link to fill out the reference form.
No, all reference forms need to be completed by non-family members.
You can purchase a membership here. You can purchase either a three-year or one-year membership, but you will need to be an active member throughout the entire program. The three-year membership also provides the bonus of a free bag of seed.
Couples need to each fill out their own application. We realize some of the information will overlap pertaining to the farming operation.
A couple would need two memberships as each person is participating and contributing.
Participating farmers are responsible for getting themselves to and from the sessions, but the costs of food and accommodations are covered by Kansas Corn. This is also true for the Session 3 domestic trip, but they are responsible for getting to the airport.
Kansas Corn team reviews applicants and references information to choose each class. Additional one-on-one follow up with applications will occur if necessary.
Please contact Emily Koop, Market Development Coordinator, at email@example.com
What Corn Corps Members Say
- Kyler Millershaski, Lakin
I‘m excited to meet the future challenges of our farm head-on. The education, experience and relationships gained through Corn Corps will help me be successful for many years to come.
- Krystale Neitzel, Lawrence
One of the topics we focused on in Corn Corps was improving our soft skills, such as conflict resolution and effective listening. We may not think we need to learn about these topics, but its critical for all families and farms.
- Matt Splitter, Lyons
Corn Corps helps you gain a wider perspective of how you fit into the big picture and how to move you and your farm forward.
- Arissa Kennedy, Gypsum
“I really enjoyed the fact that my husband and I were able to do this program together. Farming is a way of life and being able to grow and learn together within this leadership program is such a great opportunity.”
- Brandon Heier, Grainfield
I highly encourage farmers to apply for Corn Corps. Not just for the trips, but also for the knowledge you’ll gain. We evaluated parts of our own operation and learned how to work as a farm with different generations.
- Alicia Allen, Sharon Springs
“I think that being able to hear from other people that are on family farms or whatever kind of operation it might be is important, especially being able to hear about how other family dynamics are because we all experience challenges.”