2020 has been a blur, but now’s the time to plan ahead for the next step in your learning journey. Sign up with AGRICOLLEGES and enter a world of possibility.

Just because 2020 hasn’t quite turned out the way we all expected, it doesn’t mean life has come to a complete halt. In fact, if you’re a student working towards your final Grade 12 exams, now is the time to consider the opportunities open to you.

One thing the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted is the critical need for agriculture – linked to the required skills to take it forward. In recent years, agriculture has become an exciting industry that has branched out to include fields such as precision agriculture and agricultural technology. These changes need the right people, with the right skills to enable more food to be produced, more efficiently through using less natural resources, more cost effectively.

If you’re wondering where to start, online agri-education platform, AGRICOLLEGES international, offers short courses in agribusiness, plant and animal production as well as a one-year NQF4 qualification – and you can study at a time that’s convenient to you from the safety of your own home.

If you love the idea of agriculture, but tilling the soil isn’t your thing, there are many other exciting career options available, ranging from farm management to soil and seed science, pest control, research, marketing, sales and packhouse control.

You could also set your sights on becoming an agronomist, food processing engineer or agricultural economist. AGRIEC provides some helpful insight on these careers:

Agronomists

Agronomists are sometimes known as crop scientists or agricultural engineers and specialise in producing and improving food crops through conducting experiments and developing methods of production. Their careers are generally focused on increasing the quality and amount of food produced for the country’s food supply.

There are numerous career paths for agronomists, from being teachers, agricultural business consultants, researchers, or even working for the Department of Agriculture. As an agronomist, you’ll often work in the fields, on farms, or in agricultural labs and mills. A bachelor’s degree in agricultural is required to become an agronomist, although many professionals pursue further degrees.

Food processing engineer

Food engineers are also known as agricultural and food scientists. They combine engineering concepts with microbiology, chemistry and other sciences to create the best ways to make processed foods tasty, healthy and safe. They’re responsible for every step of food production, from production to distribution. It’s also their job to figure out the most reliable and most environmentally friendly ways of processing, packaging, preserving and storing foods for delivery. This means food engineers should be able to work well in an office, laboratory or manufacturing plant environment. Jobs in this field are expected to grow alongside the need for safe and sustainable food science technologies.

Agricultural economist

Agricultural economists use principles and concepts of economics to learn more about the supply and demand of goods and services in the agricultural sector. This includes the analysis of production, consumption and distribution. These professionals often choose an area of expertise, such as crop and livestock sciences, environmental economics, policy analysis, agribusiness, food safety, international trade, rural development or marketing systems. Agricultural economists typically work with agricultural data and statistics in office settings, but they may travel as part of a research group to collect information. Additionally, they may teach and conduct research at colleges and universities with undergraduate or graduate programmes in agricultural economics.

  • Still don’t know where to start? With 2021 around the corner, dare to dream about what the future may hold and find out more about the courses AGRICOLLEGES international can offer you at www.agricolleges.com.