Today's agriculture industry is a multifaceted, highly technical business. The agricultural technician is qualified to maintain complex farm and consumer equipment, diagnose field problems, apply chemicals, supervise animal and plant genetic/breeding operations and train personnel.
Technicians in this area must be competent in a variety of fields. While they are knowledgeable in traditional agriculture production sciences and technologies, they are also trained in business, accounting, records management, chemistry, lab analysis, land use and surveying, and information management. Biotechnology, agriculture marketing and environmental safety will be offered in the near future pending approval by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Additionally, more than 60 hours of training must be completed in agriculture science which involves knowledge of basic chemistry, biochemistry, biology, and mathematical principles. Students can choose from two options at Texas State Technical College Harlingen: a 12 month certificate of completion or an 18 to 24 month associate of applied science degree.
The job outlook for agricultural technologies is good. Growth areas include: agribusiness sales and service, environmental safety and sanitation, crop protection, food safety and standards, soil and water management, plant and animal breeding, exotic animal breeding and production, consumer information, biotechnology, technical sales and service and crop production. Starting salaries range from $22,000 to $30,000 annually.
A student interested in entering the Agricultural Technology program at TSTC should have completed all required high school English courses and would be well-prepared if knowledgeable in high school chemistry, biology and algebra I and II.
For further information contact:
The Agriculture Technology Department
Revised: July 2013