Crop and Soil Sciences’ Demand Soars | Crop and Soil Sciences

Student carrying an agricultural drone

Despite global turmoil, changing social patterns, and trends worthy of the buzz, the fact remains that everyone is still eating, wearing, and breathing. Accordingly, agriculture shines as one of the essential continuous workforce in our country.

The North Carolina Department of Crop and Soil Science is proudly preparing students for these in-demand positions and announces a historic high enrollment rate in the fall of 2021.

Agree on the opportunity

United State Bureau of Labor Statistics Enterprises demand strong agricultural job titles, faster than average by 2.6-9%. Likewise, the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for the year 2020-2025 Job opportunities for college graduates Projects continued to be in industrial demand, particularly in the fields of agricultural science and engineering.

The North Carolina Department of Crop and Soil Sciences has seen a steady growth trajectory that has increased 44% in the past five years, with fall 2021 hitting a record high, even up 11% since the start of the global pandemic.

Our state-of-the-art agricultural science programs prepare to educate, train and connect a whole new generation of agricultural and environmental professionals who will do just about anything in the industry – except for business as usual.

Students working on a laptop in a greenhouse
Students compete in the latest Ag Tech Hackathon.

Highest graph scores

Our department offers three unique undergraduate degrees with a myriad of customization options to pursue student interest and refine their major.

Our degree options prepare students for three Future Farmers of America (FFA) students. Top 5 Agriculture Jobs of 2020 Six of the NIFA’s projected agricultural growth sectors are.

Top 5 FFA Agriculture Jobs of 2020

  1. Drone technician (also crop spotlight, antenna bar)
  2. hydrologist
  3. agricultural communication
  4. food science
  5. precision cultivation technician

NIFA Agricultural Jobs Growth Markets

  • E-commerce managers
  • Ecosystem managers
  • Crop Consultants
  • pest control specialists
  • botanists
  • food scientists
  • Sustainable biomaterials specialists
  • Water Resources Scientists and Engineers
  • Precision farming specialists
  • veterinarians

In addition to four-year bachelor’s degrees in crop and soil sciences, we also offer two-year associate’s degrees and non-degree continuing education degree options.

A professor shows a wheat plant to a group of agricultural engineering students
Professor Bob Patterson teaches in the two- and four-year agricultural engineering programs.

Graduates on demand

The outlook and opportunities for the industry are interesting, but the job placement is where tires really pick up the traction. 95% of our four-year-old students are put into the workforce upon graduation. Recent graduate employers include BASF, Bayer Crop Science, Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, NC Cooperative Extension, Nutrien Ag Solutions, Syngenta, and several private golf courses, municipal and professional sports grounds, among others.

David Krause is the director of undergraduate programs in the department. “Our students, who are trained in soil sciences, are among the most sought-after graduates with environmental consultancy firms that are hiring our graduates as quickly as we can graduate,” Cross said.

Among our graduates, 20-30% choose to pursue advanced degrees, mostly here in NC State. Our department also offers advanced Crop Science And soil science Degrees, including master’s programs with thesis and non-thesis. Graduate students have access to research inquiries as diverse as crop breeding, genetics, crop production systems, soil chemistry and fertility, soil microbiology, and environmental management and conservation.

A man in a white lab coat handles soil samples
Graduate students have access to a wide range of laboratory and field research inquiries.

Required experiences

Alumni and hiring managers emphasize the importance of a diverse college resume, including real-world experience. All crop and soil science degree programs require an internship or faculty-led research experience. We connect students to internship opportunities around the world through our extensive alumni network and NC State career services, which maintain an extensive database of students and employers.

Crop and soil science students also gather experience through clubs and competitions. Our department includes six student organizations (Among other things in college) that introduces our students to industry speakers, professional conferences, and skills competitions.

  • Agroecology Club
  • agricultural engineering club
  • Trafgrass Club
  • Soil Arbitration Team
  • Feed referee team
  • Weed Science Team
A group of students standing with the NC State Soil Arbitration Team banner
Student teams like our Soil Judging Team compete across the country.

Help is available

North Carolina front doors
The numerous scholarships help open doors for many students in North Carolina.

While college opens doors of opportunity, it can be a financial stressor for some students. Our department is proud to offer $175,000 in two- and four-year undergraduate scholarships. An average of 53 students annually benefit from generous financial aid from donors. More than 470 students have so far received direct assistance from our department’s scholarships.

In 2022, we eagerly anticipate awarding our department’s first ever award Full-ride college scholarship In Agronomy, it was created by Connie and Dorwood Lavinghouse.

take care of ourselves

Crop and soil sciences offer many advantages to students, but what is the maximum benefit mentioned by our students? Small group family feeling.

“The best thing about the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences is that every member of the faculty really cares about your future,” said Spencer Haroldson, chief biotechnology officer. “I first came to NC State as a transfer student during the summer of 2018, and was really struck by how welcoming and even enthusiastic some of the faculty members were to join the program.”

Our department’s dedicated counseling team includes professional advisors and in-house faculty to facilitate first-year student transition, monitor academic performance and provide resources, and assist with internships, readmissions, and alumni communications.

No matter what our enrollment numbers are, for us each student is an individual on a unique journey.

“We work closely with our students to make sure they find their place in NC—whether it be at Williams Hole or not. Our job is to help match their interests with the degree program,” said David Krause, director of undergraduate programs in the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences. The optimum that leads them to a fulfilling career.” “Their success is our success.”

A woman sits at a desk in the North Carolina Department of Crop and Soil Sciences
Brittany de Laurier works in our Office of Academic Programs to advise and assist students with crop and soil sciences.

Join a growing pack

If you are looking for a career path required to achieve a lifelong vital impact, consider crop and soil sciences. Our students learn from subject matter experts, hands-on training, and real-world experiences every day.

Find out more about Bachelor’s Degree Tracks Including a deep dive into our site soil science And the lawn software. Then sign up for no stress Email Tour Department of Crop and Soil Sciences.

Connecting students to careers that solve global challenges is just part of how we grow the future.

Field mowing tractor


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