Agriculture jobs are available for students and those with little experience in the field, but there are also advanced positions for those who go to college and get an advanced degree in a field related to agriculture. While it will take at least two to four years to get a college degree, your earning potential is much higher. College is expensive, but you’ll make your money back in no time at all once you graduate.
For students who want an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in an agricultural field, there are a number of programs of study from which to choose. There are also diploma programs and certification programs for those who want advanced training, but who do not want to attend a traditional school. Some of the associate’s degree and bachelor’s degree majors you can pursue include the following:
Agriculture Production Technology
Of course, this isn’t an extensive list, and some colleges offer more general degrees in areas like business or communications with concentration options in agriculture and other areas. You can also get a degree in an area that isn’t necessarily about agriculture, but which will help you with a career in the future. For example, management is a good type of degree for those who have aspirations to run farms or work in agricultural administration.
While a bachelor’s degree will allow you to qualify for a number of upper-level positions in the agricultural world, you can get even better jobs by pursuing a terminal degree. Terminal degrees are degrees that are considered the highest in that field. For some areas, this might be a master’s degree, while in others, you can get a doctorate. Do you need a master’s degree of doctorate degree to get a job in agriculture? Absolutely not – but it will mean that you have the chance to make a much higher salary in any agriculture-related field.
In addition, with a degree you’ll qualify for positions that give you power in this industry. For many, being able to affect agriculture policy is important. If you want a role in the government or a higher-level position in an agricultural company, you almost certainly need at least a master’s degree.
College isn’t cheap, but there are ways to make your education affordable. Scholarships are available for students with academic achievements or special talents or who are willing to write essays. Grants are available as well, and instead of being based on merit, this kind of money is based on need. Student loans, while they do have to be repaid, are also a great source of money for college, since payments are deferred until after you graduate and have a chance to start your career.
You can also go to school part-time while working. Both online and offline programs are great for this, and in some cases, your employer may be willing to help pay for your education. If you go to school while you work, you’ll also be laying a great foundation for your career when you graduate. Even if your company doesn’t have advanced positions available for those with college degrees, it does mean that you’ll have a nice addition on your resume when applying to companies that do hire workers with advanced agricultural degrees.
So should you go to college if you’re interested in dairy farming jobs or other forms of work in agriculture? There are certainly jobs available for those without a degree, but by getting your degree, you’ll qualify for better jobs with higher salaries and more responsibilities. Get the whole scoop on farming related jobs from Lisa Jenkins, a freelance career writer who covers the topic for JobMonkey. From poultry jobs and seasonal orchard work to cattle ranching and agricultural genetics, Jenkins covers the whole range of opportunities.