The sixth year of the successful SowBridge distance education program starts February 5, 2014. University of Minnesota Swine Extension Educator, Sarah Schieck, encourages participants to register by January 15, 2014 to ensure participants receive their materials in time for the first session.

“The SowBridge program is for people involved in managing or caring for boars, sows, and/or their litters, including allied industry personnel, access to timely, relevant, and accurate information regarding some of the major challenges facing the industry today” states Schieck. “Participants in the past have found the program to be very convenient, affordable, and worthwhile.”

Twelve sessions take place monthly throughout the year. All sessions start at 11:30 a.m. Central Time and last for 45 minutes, which includes time for questions.

The year-long program is offered by subscription only. Cost is $250 for the first registration from an entity and $125 for each subsequent subscription from the same entity. Registration provides access to one phone line per monthly session and all program materials for each session. Prior to each monthly session, participants receive a CD containing the session’s presentation, along with information to call a toll-free conference line to listen to and interact with presenters.

A brochure containing program topics and registration information is available on the Swine Extension website at For a sampling of previous SowBridge programs, visit

SowBridge is sponsored by a group of 11 state universities with Sarah Schieck and Lee Johnston of the University of Minnesota Extension serving as program coordinators. The Iowa Pork Industry Center coordinates all registration and subscriber mailings.