Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship (DGA) is an independent non-profit organization and a National Apprenticeship under the US Department of Labor-Employment and Training Administration. It was created with funding from the USDA-NIFA's Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program.

DGA's partners are crucial to the success and sustainability of this innovative program.
Thank You!

Funding Partners Education Partners Administrative Partners

The US Department of Labor aims to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

ApprenticeshipUSA offers employers in every industry the tools to develop a highly skilled workforce to help grow their business. For workers, ApprenticeshipUSA offers opportunities to earn a salary while learning the skills necessary to succeed in high-demand careers. ApprenticeshipUSA exemplifies high standards, instructional rigor and quality training. Whether you are an employer looking to hire, train or retain a skilled workforce, or a worker looking for a new career in a well-paying occupation, ApprenticeshipUSA will help you achieve your goals.

Farm Service Agency equitably serves all farmers, ranchers, and agricultural partners through the delivery of effective, efficient agricultural programs for all Americans. More than 2,346 state and county offices are the primary distributors of FSA programs. Wisconsin is one of the top ten agricultural states in the nation, generating over $59 billion annually in the state's economy. Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship is an approved vendor in the FSA Financial Management Training Program.

GrassWorks is a grassroots membership organization that provides leadership and education to farmers and consumers for the advancement of managed grass-based agriculture to benefit present and future generations. It organizes the annual GrassWorks Grazing Conference and provides resources on grass-based management for all types of livestock. GrassWorks was the original industry sponsor for DGA and continues to be a partner in providing education to Masters and Apprentices.

DGA uses certified HMI instructors to help Apprentices and Masters reach their farming and career goals. The mission of Holistic Management International is to educate people to manage land for a sustainable future. As a non-profit, we accomplish this by motivating, connecting, supporting and training farmers, ranchers, and land stewards through the practice of Holistic Management, a Whole Farm/Ranch Planning System that addresses and improves environmental health, sustains economic viability, and enhances the quality of life of farm and ranch communities.

For the past century, the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) has prepared students for critical occupations. As technology expands and employers increasingly adapt to compete, WTCS graduates fill contemporary jobs in areas like firefighting, robotics, radiography, web design, welding, nursing, auto mechanics, clinical technology and energy efficiency. The technical colleges currently offer over 300 programs in every industry sector around the state. Required courses for Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship in Soils and Nutrients, Dairy Herd Health, Dairy Nutrition, and Milk Quality are taught through WTCS.

The Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards-Department of Workforce Development (BAS-DWD) was instrumental in the development of the Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship, offering professional support and an established process as well as a proven educational model. BAS-DWD in partnership with the DGA State Committee continues to provide oversight for the program. For more than 100 years, Apprenticeship has trained skilled workers in Wisconsin by combining on-the-job training with related classroom instruction. Apprentices earn while they learn and their skills are nationally recognized.

The Wisconsin School for Beginning Dairy and Livestock Farmers (WSBDF) is a product of the Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. WSBDF is part of the core curriculum for Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship. It provides the opportunity for motivated individuals to educate themselves about pasture-based dairy and livestock farming and offers training through traditional classroom activities, hands-on internships, and farm tours of pasture-based farms managed by successful graduates and mentors.