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MCC Daily Tribune Archive

Courses and Careers in Agriculture

The Agriculture and Life Sciences Institute provides academic instruction for existing and future agribusiness professionals, such as farmers, winery operators, biotechnologists, agricultural engineers and employees of companies involved in renewable energy resources.

The Institute, in collaboration with the Biology Department, offers two credit bearing courses designed to introduce students to the field of agriculture.  A late start course in Introduction to Greenhouse Management (AGS 180) begins 10/17/11 and emphasizes the significance and use of controlled climate structures.  It is designed for the career or non-science student and provides an introduction to one of many aspects of the field of agriculture.  Students who are interested in exploring possible future careers in agriculture or food production might also consider registering for BIO 113 (Introduction to Agriculture).  This course, taught by Institute Director Bob King, is designed as a seminar course and explores basic principles relating to agriculture and food production.  Educational and career opportunities are also presented so that students can explore a variety of interests.

According to the Career Advising Guide only 10 percent of the more than 20 million people working in the agricultural field are farmers.  The rest are employed in many other science-based, high-tech or business oriented careers.  Areas of study within agriculture include business management (also known as agribusiness); economics; education and research in forestry, horticulture and animal science; agronomy which refers to production of field crops, fruits and vegetables; animal care; biotechnology which produces new forms of field crops and farm animals; food production involving production, processing and distribution of safe and healthy food products; and entomology which is the study of insects and involves insect surveys, pest management, and the study of disease carrying insects and the raising of bees.

MCC students who are interested in pursuing careers in agricultural fields are encouraged to investigate transfer information to area colleges and universities.  Cornell University, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY Morrisville, SUNY Cobleskill and SUNY Alfred State offer a variety of degrees in Agricultural Sciences, Animal Science, Aquatics & Fisheries Science, Natural Resource Management, Dairy Management, Equine Science, Agricultural Biotechnology and more.  Agriculture is a field rich in opportunity for a wide variety of rewarding careers. 

Laurel Sanger
Science, Health & Business