To pursue a career as an agribusiness consultant, agricultural business manager, agronomist, or agronomy salesman, it will be advantageous to have a degree in agronomy, crop science, agricultural science, agricultural systems, and management, or other related subjects.
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What is an Agronomist?
Agronomy is the scientific technology of growing plants in soil for food, fiber, and fuel. Agronomists can work as farm managers, managers of fertilizer and chemical stores, lab and field technicians, crop management consultants, conservationists of soil and water, inspectors, or sales representatives for farm management services, banks, and food processing firms to perform a land appraisal, soil testing, or work in planning and managing positions in the agriculture industry.
Agronomists serve as a bridge between crop researchers and farmers, reviewing research findings and using knowledge to advise farmers on new scientific advancements in crop-growing practices. Agronomists can work at research facilities for the federal and state governments as plant breeders, plant pathologists, and soil surveyors, which includes work in the fields of plant physiology, plant genetics, and soil science.
What do they do?
To find the best strategies for raising crop quality and yield, agronomists perform experiments. Agronomists collaborate with farmers to assist them in growing the greatest varieties of crops, including corn, cotton, soybeans, and wheat, based on their research. They are well-versed in biology, economics, earth science, chemistry, genetics, and all other related fields.
An agronomist spends time in the lab reviewing agricultural data to determine ways to enhance the following generation. They need to use critical thinking and problem-solving skills in order to plant, harvest, and cultivate crops.
They create techniques for safeguarding crops against weeds, pests, and adverse weather conditions. An agronomic will spend several hours inspecting a crop if there is a problem, looking for any indications of disease, an insect problem, a weed problem, or even a problem with the soil.
The agronomist will then conduct comparison studies, research in scholarly journals and reference materials, consult with colleagues, and find a cause and remedy for the farmer.
An agronomic will convey their results and ideas to farmers who can apply the knowledge for their own harvests after writing up their research and giving lectures and presentations about it. Additionally, an agronomist spends a lot of time traveling and visiting farmers, working with them to increase agricultural productivity and examining any issues they might be having.
What Roles do Agronomist Play?
Crop Production and Management
These agronomists primarily deal with field crops. They oversee agricultural planting, harvesting, and the application of more productive farming techniques. The management of recreational spaces like golf courses and athletic fields may also fall under this function. The majority of the time spent on this job is typically spent outside.
Crop production, genetic engineering, and environmental conservation are all topics of agronomy research. Research agronomists spend a lot of time in the field as well as in labs. A master’s or doctorate in agronomy or a closely related discipline is almost universal among research agronomists.
The activity of agronomists in this area includes both huge, high-tech farms and smaller, individual farms in developing countries. Whatever the scale, this kind of agronomist is concerned with assisting farmers in creating and putting into practice procedures that ensure activities are sustainable in terms of both the economy and the environment.
Water and Soil Conservation
Agronomists working in this area are frequently engineers and scientists. They might put practices in place to manage runoff, enhance the quality of the water, and prevent erosion. Conservation agronomists may work indoors, outside, or in a combination of the two environments.
What’s it like to Work as an Agronomist?
An agronomist’s work typically involves conducting research in a lab or on the field, monitoring the crops, and collaborating with farmers, depending on the type of work they specialize in.
The spring and summer seasons are when fieldwork is most prevalent, while the winter months are usually much busier with lab work and business planning.
In the US, an agronomic may expect to make about $41,500 a year on average. Agronomists make an average of $41,500 a year. Typically, salaries range from $21,400 to $62,300.
How Much do Agronomists Make in Comparison to other Professions?
In the US, agronomists make about the same money as others in comparable professions. They often make more than agricultural and food science technicians but less than certified crop advisors.
Getting into Agronomy
Students in high school who want to pursue a career in agronomy should start by taking additional math and science courses. Students can pursue an agriculture degree in college or university and enroll in agronomy courses. Government organizations, private businesses, and academic researchers looking for assistants are all sources of agronomy internships. This is an excellent approach for students to graduate with real-world experience.
Even though a master’s degree is sometimes considered if one plans to engage in research, one can become agronomic with simply a bachelor’s degree in science and on-the-job training.
Certified Crop Adviser (CCA), Certified Professional Agronomist (CPAg), and Certified Professional Soil Scientist/Classifier (CPSS and CPSC) are the three agronomy certificates available.
Meeting the educational requirements and having two years of agronomy experience are typically required for becoming professionally certified. To keep their accreditation, an agronomist must stay current on developments in the industry. This is accomplished by enrolling in and finishing any newly offered courses.