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Agricultural News

Obtaining Private Applicator Certification through CEUs with OSU's Josh Bushong

Tue, 20 Sep 2022 10:55:35 CDT

Obtaining Private Applicator Certification through CEUs with OSU's Josh Bushong Associate Farm Editor, Reagan Calk, visited with Oklahoma State University Extension Area Agronomist Specialist, Josh Bushong during the Schantz Farms Field Day in Hydro, Okla. on September 15. Bushong talks about Continuing Education Units, a route producers can take to obtain their private applicators license.

“The big thing is this is new for a lot of guys,” Bushong said. “Whom we are talking about is our private applicators, so a lot of our farmers that are applying restricted use pesticides on their own farm, they have a private applicator’s license.”

Before now, Bushong said to obtain their private applicators certification, producers have always just had to re-test every five years, through a take-home and open-book test, which they could then put in the mail to become recertified for the next five years.

This year, Bushong said, the exam is proctored, and producers can no longer complete the take-home test to become recertified.

“Now private applicators now have two options to certify,” Bushong said, “They can either acquire enough CEUs to where they don’t have to retest, or they can just simply retest as they have always done. Just keep in mind it is a closed book, it is a proctored computer-based exam. So that is kind of startling for some of our farmers obviously that are not very computer savvy, so they are going to be wanting to look at recertifying by acquiring those CEUs.”

There is a five-year cycle for certification, Bushong said.

“In order to acquire enough CEUs, you have to get so many per year,” Bushong said. “For this five-year cycle, it is kind of different. We don’t have to get as many as a typical five-year cycle going forward, but at the bottom line, applicators need to get at least six by the end of this year. In total, they need at least 16 by the end of next year, but they can get obviously up to ten in any one year.”

Bushong said many private applicators are not aware of the opportunity to become certified through CEUs.

There are many opportunities to become certified through CEUs, Bushong said, as the Oklahoma Department of Ag food and Forestry is looking into offering some webinars and OSU extension puts on courses as well.

There are many entities working to make it possible for producers to attend sessions to become recertified.

“A lot of our coops, our chemical dealers, are looking at providing some of those opportunities to our farmers,” Bushong said. “But as I said, this is just for if you are a farmer that is a certified applicator to use those restricted use pesticides.”

More information about acquiring CEUs to become certified a private applicator can be found at the Oklahoma Department of Ag Food and Forestry and Oklahoma State University Extension.

Click the LISTEN BAR below to listen to Josh Bushong talk about CEUs.



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