Learn to manage your property's natural resources

Designed For
Owners of a small woodland, small farm or other rural land who want to manage their property's natural resources more effectively.
New dates coming soon!
Hybrid | Online and in-person
Regular price is $200
Eight weeks

This new Land Steward course from Oregon State University Extension features a blend of online, classroom and field instruction. This expert-led course is well-suited for busy adults who enjoy online learning but also want to see stewardship in action and includes self-paced online lessons, one weeknight classroom session in Central Point, and two dynamic field days with local experts at sites in rural Jackson County.

What You'll Cover in the Course

In this course, you will gain essential insights into wildfire risk reduction, woodland management, encouraging and controlling wildlife, stream ecology, pasture management, growing healthy soils, small acreage infrastructure, stewardship planning, and more.

Throughout the course, you can expect to spend up to two hours per week on each self-paced online lesson and related activities. You will also complete a series of resource assessment to get to know your property better and develop a management plan for your property using our landowner-friendly template.

Through the online materials and in-person sessions, you will develop property management and planning skills, see real-life examples of land stewardship in action, network with other landowners, and meet natural resource professionals and learn how they can support you.

Learning Outcomes for the Course

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe basic stewardship practices for woodlands, wildlife, soils, pastures, water resources, streams and riparian areas.
  • Conduct an assessment for each of these resources to identify potential resource concerns, healthy conditions and potential follow-up actions.
  • Create a management plan for your property to help you meet your goals and improve resource stewardship.
  • Max Bennet

    Max Bennett is an Extension Forestry and Natural Resources Agent for Oregon State University. He has worked for Oregon State for more than 20 years, including 18 years in the Klamath-Siskiyou region, serving Jackson and Josephine Counties. Max provides educational and technical assistance for forest landowners, land managers, and other natural resource professionals. His professional interests include living with wildfire, forest health, forest restoration, and reaching new and inexperienced landowners. He is a co-founder of the Oregon State University Extension Land Steward program. He has also worked for the Oregon Forest Resources Institute, US Forest Service and Oregon Department of Forestry with duties ranging from backcountry trail maintenance to fire fighting to forestry education. Max enjoys all the usual outdoor stuff (hiking, skiing, etc.). His lottery fantasy is winning Megabucks, buying a bunch of forestland, retiring and working as a gentleman forest farmer, but in the meantime he’s happy with his OSU gig.

  • Rachel Werling

    Rachel grew up in Minnesota on a family dairy farm. After studying environmental biology and botany at Humboldt State University in California, she served as a forestry volunteer in the Peace Corps in Ecuador. She lived in Oaxaca, Mexico for twelve years where she stewarded three acres of land. Through Arizona State University, Rachel completed her Master’s degree in botany while in Oaxaca. Her thesis is an illustrated flora of native woody species. Prior to the Land Stewards, Rachel worked for OSU Extension coordinating a community watershed outreach and education program. She has been providing professional development and teaching outdoor science and natural resource education in Oregon since 2008. Since moving to Oregon in 2006, Rachel has walked many wild miles of land as a professional field biologist performing inventories and assessments for plants, birds and mammals in the Pacific Northwest. In her free time, you'll find her outdoors when possible, hiking, camping, canoeing, x-c skiing, and always keeping an eye on what the plants, birds, land stewards and other creatures are up to.