A degree in Agriculture and Forestry may not be the most typical of subjects to pursue, but they are absolutely critical for the successful future of our planet. The graduates and experts these courses are producing go a long way to keeping the world functioning, the population fed, and the climate under control.
The world is currently facing a myriad of complex problems such as widespread famine, climate change, environmental degradation and large swathes of poverty stricken regions. The Agriculture and Forestry industries are vital in solving these issues, as well as for the general well-being of the global population.
Students in this field learn to examine evidence and research to determine the most effective and practical solutions to these epic issues, meaning people who understand conservation, sustainability and farming become absolutely essential.
Many courses in the sector combine several academic disciplines to get a complete understanding of the issues affecting communities and the environment. Whether you are interested in the scientific side, or the active and practical, there is something to suit many different learning styles. The Agriculture & Forestry industries need it all; from logical statistics interpreters, to people physically planting crops or taking measurements out in the field.
Because of the importance and relevance of the subject area, Agriculture & Forestry graduates are highly sought-after, and job opportunities are abundant worldwide. A career can careen down a multitude of routes; from business management, to farming journalism, data analysis, agricultural sales and marketing, environmental conservation, public recreation, social research and many, many more.
So, if you want to make an impact on tomorrow’s world through a dream to alleviate world hunger, develop alternative technologies, or conserve our natural resources, a degree within this sector would be the perfect start.
Here are 5 universities leading the way in Agriculture & Forestry…
Playing a major role in advancing and improving agricultural and forestry productivity in South Africa and beyond, the Faculty of AgriSciences at Stellenbosch University is committed to solving the major development issues that face the modern world.
This commitment is reflected in the Faculty’s attention to outreach initiatives, in which students engage with communities to better understand the problems they face and find viable solutions. Areas include pressing issues like poverty alleviation, food security, biodiversity, sustainability, and the rural economy.
The programmes offered cover an impressively wide range of subjects, including Agricultural Economics, Animal Sciences, Conservation Ecology, Forest and Wood Science, Genetics, Plant Pathology, and Viticulture & Oenology. The broad spread of topics give students the skills needed to compete on a national and international level, and allows the School to provide an in-depth multi-disciplinary approach to Agrisciences.
Hands-on experience is also a key feature of SU graduate success, with the Faculty’s unique experimental farms giving students practical knowledge to compliment the academic offering.
Used to train undergraduate students, as well as for postgraduate research projects, these learning environments are meant to simulate the practical conditions of commercial farms in the agricultural industry, giving students valuable working knowledge of the field for their future careers.
With a diverse range of majors ranging from Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics to Grain Science and Industry and Animal Science and Industry, the College of Agriculture at KSU provides a comprehensive, diverse, and globally-leading education within the rewarding and dynamic agricultural field.
“The mission of the College of Agriculture is to develop human capital at the undergraduate and graduate levels to support agriculture, agriculturally related industries, natural resources management, education and research,” the institution notes. “In doing so, the College of Agriculture educates people for productive lives that contribute to agriculture, society and to the economic competitiveness of Kansas.”
Reaching beyond the Faculty’s unparalleled experience, students find a home away from home on this student centered campus where teaching and research units adjacent to the campus allow for ample experiential learning opportunities. Students experience independent academic advising, plus unrivalled opportunities for undergraduate research, and countless chances to build a unique community and network with both peers and industry leaders. Use this guide to explore the Faculty’s majors and exclusive career opportunities.
The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry at the University of Helsinki is expert in the responsible use of renewable natural resources both in Finland and worldwide, with a strong focus on the agricultural, food science, forest and environmental sciences, as well as on economics and management.
Graduates enjoy great career prospects, due in part to teaching methods that allow students to apply their theoretical knowledge to practical and topical issues, providing an excellent springboard for an international career.
This innovative blend of bioscience and business means students are versatile experts who can meet the needs of both the business sector and society at large. As much of the big problems facing the world also have severe economic implications, this combination is appealing to future employers and also crucial in finding workable solutions.
Research conducted by the Faculty intends to promote the sustainable production, use and consumption of renewable natural resources both nationally and internationally, integrating various approaches drawn from the natural sciences, engineering, economics and social sciences. Research pillars include competitiveness and sustainability in food systems, digital infrastructures in natural resources management, food production chain and health, microbiome – microbiome research network, and natural resource economics.
Priding itself on its ability to solve real-world problems through world-class research, the Sydney Institute of Agriculture brings together agricultural research from across the University of Sydney and contributes valuable knowledge to the agriculture and food sectors.
Outreach is a major part of the Institute’s mission to share research findings with the agricultural industry, government, and the broader community. As part of this mission they engage with federal and state governments to contribute expertise and influence policy making in agriculture-related areas, and have direct engagement with the growing agribusiness sector to effect real change at the ground level.
Research shared by the Institute is considered world-class, seeking to meet the challenges and take on the opportunities facing Australia’s agricultural sector for decades to come, while also developing solutions for the significantly increasing global demand for high-quality food and fibre.
The research structure is built on five thematic research areas which make up the core research capabilities. These are: Plant Production, Carbon, Water and Soil, Quality Food, Animal Agriculture, and Development Agriculture. Current research opportunities are broad but all have the common thread of improving the lives of people and the environment.
The Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia (UBC) is globally-reputed in terms of forestry education. Situated amid the stunning landscape of British Columbia, Canada, UBC Forestry students benefit from cutting-edge laboratories, classrooms, computer labs, and a coastal rainforest right in their backyard.
While UBC’s Faculty of Forestry research program is internationally-renowned, it is its academic catalogue that make it a truly world-class institution. The Faculty offers a diverse range of degree programs that focus on conservation, sustainability, wood science, genetics, resource management, and the emerging frontier of urban forestry. By learning from some of the world’s leading experts in their respective fields, students understand how to combine social and biological sciences with technical and business expertise. Graduates are highly employable and have pursued careers with governments, international organisations, and private business leaders as forest biologists, wood engineers, forestry business administrators, conservationists, and renewable resource managers.
Set in Vancouver, ranked one of the world’s most beautiful cities, UBC is one of Canada’s top universities, counting seven Nobel Prize winners and three Canadian prime ministers among its current or former faculty and alumni.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International