CTD Specialty Planner Certification Program
The CTD Specialty Planner Certification Program certifies individuals to meet planning certification guidelines, and recognizes planners demonstrating an advanced level of skill. Certification in a particular discipline area or specialty builds on the core competencies of the NRCS conservation planner designations. Current CTD Specialty Planner Certifications available for: Dairy Planning, Farm Planning, and Riparian Planning. Other future disciplines which will occur in future years include: Forest Planning.
Learn more about these specialty certifications by reading the requirements below. Learn what documents are required and the needed steps to take to submit a complete certification application through the CTD Specialty Planner Certification Application Online form. Note that all specialty planner applicants are required to have obtained, at minimum, a USDA NRCS Level I Planner Certification* before they can apply to this program in any of the discipline areas.
*Or, in substitute of a USDA NRCS Level I Planner Certification, an equivalent certification from another accredited planning program as noted in the program requirements documents below for each specialty. Understanding of the core foundations of conservation planning is integral to applying for any specialty based certification through CTD.
Application Submission Process
First, review your specialty specific CTD Planner Certification Program document (above) for requirements.
Then, prepare and submit ALL of the required documents (bulleted below) at the online form found at www.tinyurl.com/CTDcertAPPLY - or via the "Apply Now!" button at the bottom of this webpage. One entry/application submission per certification, please. If you'd like to apply for multiple specialities, you'll need to submit each as its own individual application.
Required Document #1 - Completed CTD One-Page Certification Application
Required Document #2 - Required NRCS Planner Designation Documentation Part 1 - Proof of USDA NRCS Planner Level I Planner Certification* is required for all applicants to the CTD Specialty Planner Certification Program. Higher levels of USDA NRCS Certification may be required for CTD Specialty Planner Levels beyond CTD Level 1. (*or an equivalent from an accredited planning organization as noted in the Certification Program Requirements documents above)
Required Document #3 - Required NRCS Planner Designation Documentation Part 2: PDF download of your AgLearn Program Development Plan (PDP) for any and all NRCS Planner Levels you are currently pursuing beyond NRCS Level I, if you are also in current pursuit of these.
Required Document #4 - Documentation of having completed required training for the CTD Planner Type & Level you are applying for. Be sure to utilize the relevant CTD Type & Level tab within the Training Plan template as the format in which you should present this information.
Required Document #5 - Documentation of upcoming training you intend to take to continue pursuit of higher levels of CTD Certification. Be sure to utilize the "Annual Training Plan" tab within the Training Plan template as the format in which you should present this information.
Required Document #6 - One PDF (1) Letter of Support from your District's Leadership
Required Document #7 - Conservation Plan Product Submission (PDF format, less than 30 MB in total). If applying for CTD Level 1 = 1 plan product submission required; CTD Level 2 = 2 plans required; CTD Level 3 = 3 plans required. See the Plan Review Worksheet to ensure you are submitting a conservation plan product that will be addressing the evaluation criteria.
Once your application is submitted, anticipate a 1-2 month review process. The CTD Certification Coordinator will be in touch with you after an initial review of your application submission materials to ensure completeness. They will use the Required Documents Checklist to document the completeness of all required documents, then will be in touch to let you know if anything is missing or needs modification before progressing to the next step.
Once an application is considered initially to be complete, then your conservation plan product submission(s) will be reviewed using the CTD Conservation Plan Review Worksheet. This is an important part of the application so be sure to refer to this worksheet in advance of your submission to ensure your work product will address these elements. If your work product is missing information or needs updating, you will be notified to resubmit the work product after making those modifications and having it reviewed a second time.
After all these steps are followed, and your application for CTD Certification is considered "Approved" by the CTD Leadership Team, the CTD Certification Coordinator will send you a digital e-Certification (as a PDF and JPG file) in an email. Information on how to maintain your certification will also be included in this email.
Upon receiving the e-Certification, the date which you become certified then starts the count-down clock for your 3-year Continuing Education Unit (CEU) requirement for maintaining and recertifying your CTD Certification. Visit the CEU webpage for more information about the CEU process. Recertification is required on or just before your "3 year deadline" is up. Look to your e-Certificate for the date your award was presented to know when 3 years from then occurs. These 40 hours should be submitted via the CTD Recertification SmartSheet Form.
If you cannot access the Smartsheet form, or have any issues, contact us for an alternative submission method: email@example.com
CTD Specialty Planner Certification Inquires
For questions, please contact the CTD Certification Coordinator by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.