Megan Schossow Live-stream

Roundtable – Aging on the Farm: 2020 Community Forum 

Megan Schossow, MS, Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health (UMASH); Amy Pekol, PhD, UMASH; Jeff Bender, DVM, MS, UMASH

Megan Schossow is the Outreach Coordinator for UMASH. She received her BS and MS from the University of Minnesota. She provides leadership for communication and outreach strategies for UMASH and lends her expertise to the NIOSH Ag Center ECO team.

Amy Pekol is the UMASH Evaluation director and provides support to the center on evaluation approaches and unique strategies for gathering information. She is involved with the overall administration of center activities working closely with the director.

Averi Olson is a PhD candidate in Occupational Therapy at the University of Minnesota.

Dan Younggren is a Minnesota farmer currently working to transition the farm to the next generation.  He views health and staying active as an important part of their transition plan.

Learning objective:
Participants will be able to understand the complex issues facing aging farmers and identify resources.


In 2017, the average age of farmers in the United States was 58, and the total number of farmers was declining. Many of these individuals have been farming for decades. Agriculture, as a profession, has more “older workers” of any other profession or industry. In addition, the agricultural industry ranks as one of the hazardous.

There are a number of reasons farmers continue to work in farming for decades, including being self employed, enjoyment of the land, and producing food. The aging process has implications for work safety including physiological changes such as loss of senses, muscle mass and slower response times. How can rural communities support farmers as they age?

This roundtable presentation will discuss the recent UMASH Community Forums – Aging on the Farm and the key issues facing older farmers, their families and how rural communities can support them. The discussion will include:

Preparing an online forum model for the greatest impact
Summaries, resources and themes
Partner projects to enhance local support


Video of “Aging on the Farm” Roundtable


Participate in the Wiki-Survey to identify top health and safety concerns for aging farmers in the U.S.

Aging on the Farm Community Forum

Succession, transition and financial planning resource links