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Career Opportunities

Today's graduates in Soil and Crop Sciences are qualified for a variety of challenging and rewarding positions. Many work in either the private or public sector in jobs dealing with environmental or agricultural management. Many of our graduates also go on to graduate school to refine their skills as researchers, and some go into business as farmers or consultants. The variety of opportunities is illustrated by the personal sketches of some of our alumni.

Here are some careers taken up by our graduates:

  • Agriculture Business Sales Manager
  • Agriculture Extension Worker (County Agent)
  • Agriculture Finance Advisor (banking)
  • Agronomist
  • Commodities Market Consultant
  • Consulting Soil Scientist
  • Crop Management Consultant
  • Data Analyst (State Department of Agriculture)
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Environmental Lawyer
  • Farmer
  • Integrated Pest Management Specialist
  • International Agricultural Developer (not-for-profit organization)
  • Land Management Contractor
  • Land Use Planner (Natural Resource Conservation Service)
  • Legislative Consultant (on environmental issues)
  • Peace Corps Volunteer
  • Research Laboratory Technician
  • Seed Technologist
  • Soil and Water Conservationist (Natural Resource Conservation Service)

With graduate training, a host of opportunities with universities and government agencies are open as professors and scientists. These include work with Geographic Information Systems and university-level teaching and research.

The Career Development Office in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has compiled data from surveys of recent graduates in each major.

Experience

To be ready for graduation from college, you will want to get as much work experience as possible. For positions that involve working with farmers, some on-farm experience is invaluable, and increasing numbers of employers are insisting upon it. Faculty in the department and the college's Career Development Office are glad to help our students search for relevant summer jobs and internship opportunities. Cornell is an especially rich environment for gaining experience in research. Students are routinely hired to work in our laboratories and on summer research projects. It is also possible to obtain academic credit for research, and students with a sufficient grade-point average may conduct their own research project and write an honors thesis to qualify for graduation "with honors."

Although classes cannot substitute for learning experiences in the work place, our beginning courses include laboratories and field trips to increase hands-on appreciation of the subject matter. An Agronomy Club also fosters professional interactions among our students on a national scale.