Committee Chair - Christie Martens
Members - Brendan Dickson, Jeremy Olthof
Mandate - Support quality education in beekeeping by assisting with requested information and educational supplies
Commercial Beekeeping Program: Preparing the Next Generation of Beekeepers
Offered by Grande Prairie Regional College at the Fairview campus, the Commercial Beekeeping program is the only accredited college certificate focused on apiculture & beekeeping agri-business in North America. Designed with input and support from Alberta beekeepers, this full-time, 46 week, January-to-November program will prepare graduates to make a living as beekeepers.
Located in the heart of the Peace Country in northwestern Alberta, a region with a world reputation for quality honey and extensive beekeeping operations, this program offers comprehensive, current, and relevant training essential to successful beekeeping.
The program is a balanced blend of classroom study, practical work, and field trips to beekeeping operations in Western Canada. It includes a 3 week course on queen rearing and the opportunity to participate in the annual Alberta Beekeepers Convention.
Earn and learn: A unique aspect of this program is the PAID work experience. Students are placed with commercial beekeepers for 23 weeks during the bee season (March-September) where they gain real hands-on experience with beekeeping and honey production AND earn a salary equivalent to other fieldworkers. This paid work experience significantly off-sets program costs for students.
Beekeeping suits people who are:
· Independent and entrepreneurial
· Interested in an rural, green, sustainable lifestyle and career
· Practical and active; enjoy outdoor, physical and hands-on work
· Looking for a first or second career
Beekeeping plays an important role in honey production, crop pollination, and overall environmental health and diversity. Alberta produces 40% of Canadian honey and has many large scale beekeeping operations. Business start-up costs for beekeeping are quite low compared to other forms of agriculture. There is room in both the landscape and the industry for more beekeepers.
GPRC’s Commercial Beekeeping program will prepare you to make a living in beekeeping either as a full-time operator, a serious sideliner (part-time beekeeper) or a smaller-scale hobbyist.
To talk to someone about this program,
· Email the instructor: Eric Stromgren firstname.lastname@example.org
· Phone Program assistant: Lin Roy at 780 835 6630
Check the Web:
Alberta, BC, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba Beekeeping Associations provide scholarships annually to a student from each province. We are currently seeking additional scholarships.
For information about the Alberta Beekeepers scholarship: