The future of Arkansas agriculture is in the hands of students. Across the U.S., job opening and career opportunities in the agriculture industry greatly outnumber the amount of qualified graduates. In Arkansas, several esteemed colleges and universities offer a variety of programs and degrees to prepare students for careers in all aspects of the industry.
Whether interested in traditional production agriculture or business, economics and communications, employers can be sure that Arkansas graduates are well equipped for success. Learn more about what schools have to offer to produce career-ready graduates on the next few pages.
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
For more than 140 years, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff has worked with small class sizes, competitive degree options, excellent faculty and hands-on, out-of-class opportunities to give students the best education possible.
In the university’s School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences (SAFHS), students have six different B.S. degree options, including Agricultural Business and Animal Science, as well as a Regulatory Science B.S degree and a Master of Science in Agricultural Regulations.
From obtaining careers in production agriculture, or applying agricultural skills to banking and business, the management of supply chains, or research applications, students leave the SAFHS ready to take the lead in their desired field. Learn more at uapb.edu.
Arkansas Tech University
To meet students’ career needs, Arkansas Tech University (ATU) in Russellville offers degrees in Agriculture Business and Agriculture Education through the Department of Agriculture in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Like many ag departments across the state, it has support from large companies, including Tyson, Cargill, Farm Credit and Bunge.
“We tell our students here, if you’re interested in accounting or science, any of those can be accommodated with an agriculture degree,” says Mack Rainey, head of the Department of Agriculture at ATU. “Ag companies are some of the few that were still hiring people even back when the economy was bad, and they’re continuing to grow.
“We think we lose some of our students to the sciences because they don’t realize agriculture is extremely science-based and is also technology-based,” he says. “There are a multitude of jobs in the agricultural industry that involve all of those things. That’s where we’re trying to pick up these students and have them realize it’s not the way it was 50 years ago. It’s now truly an industry.” Find out all the university has to offer at atu.edu/agriculture.
Arkansas State University
The College of Agriculture and Technology at Arkansas State University (A-State) in Jonesboro prepares students for successful careers in food, fiber and natural resources industries with several undergraduate degrees and a master’s degree program.
Education is the primary focus of A-State’s College of Agriculture and Technology, but it also has extensive public outreach programming and research activities.
Students can major in Agricultural Business, Animal Science, Agricultural Studies, Plant/Soil Science, or Technology.
Two new minors in (1) Crop Consulting and Agronomic Services and (2) Spatial Technologies and Geographical Information Systems allow A-State’s students to contribute to the ever-changing technological landscape of today’s agriculture. A Master’s Degree in Agriculture is offered with concentrations in the primary majors as well as Vocational- Technical Administration.
Graduates excel in a variety of careers including agricultural business, animal management, agronomy, agricultural education, precision technologies and veterinary medicine. Learn more at astate.edu/college/agriculture-and-technology.
University of Arkansas at Monticello
The University of Arkansas at Monticello offers topnotch programs to prepare students for careers in agriculture and forestry.
Supporting the future of the state’s vital forestry industry, the School of Forestry & Natural Resources at the University of Arkansas at Monticello offers majors in Natural Resources Management and Land Surveying, as well as a two-year Associate of Science degree in Land Surveying Technology and a master’s in Forest Resources.
The B.S. in Natural Resources, the Society of American Foresters accredited forestry program, the communications in natural resources program, the B.S. in Land Surveying, and the M.S. in Forest Resources are the only programs of their kind offered in Arkansas. The school has 1,400 acres of forestland for hands-on experiences that translate to real-world careers.
The School of Agriculture offers B.S. degrees in Agricultural Business, Animal Science, Plant and Soil Science, and General Agriculture. Students gain hands-on research experience at The University of Arkansas Southeast Research and Extension Center, which is housed within the School of Agriculture. Learn more at uamont.edu.
University of Arkansas in Fayetteville
The Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, part of the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, provides students with life-changing educational opportunities preparing them for professional careers advancing the businesses of foods and agriculture, the impact of foods on human health, environmental sustainability and human quality of life.
The college advances food, family and the environment by offering innovative classes, study abroad trips, and international and local internship opportunities through 12 undergraduate majors, 20 minors and 11 graduate programs.
Bachelor’s degrees with various concentrations are offered in agricultural business; agricultural education, communications and technology; animal science; crop science; environmental, soil and water science; food science; horticulture, landscape and turf sciences; poultry science; apparel merchandising and product development; human nutrition and hospitality innovation; and human development and family sciences.
Discover more at bumperscollege.uark.edu.
Southern Arkansas University
Located in Magnolia, Southern Arkansas University’s (SAU) agriculture department has further enhanced its methods of preparing students for agricultural careers with the opening of its Agriculture Science Center in 2013. The center is equipped with new classrooms, laboratories and technology.
“This building is designed to facilitate the teaching process,” says Jeff Miller, department chair. “We’ve got all the technology that makes the delivery system a little easier. It’s been a major, major upgrade.”
In addition to the facility, SAU has a new horticulture center consisting of two state-of-the-art greenhouses, hydroponics operation and teaching plots for instruction on orchard, vineyard, turf grass, forage and vegetable crop management.
SAU’s agriculture department received a grant from the Soil Conservation District to construct a community garden consisting of 60 raised beds that will be available to the community. Students studying in the department of agriculture can choose from three majors: Agriculture Education, Agriculture Business and Agriculture Science. The Agriculture Science major includes three concentrations: Animal Science, Plant Science and Pre-Veterinary Medicine.
Read more about SAU’s program at web.saumag.edu/science/departments/agriculture.