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Agriculture - Agribusiness

  • Overview
  • Careers
  • New Freshmen
  • New Transfer
  • Illinois State Students

The Agribusiness sequence includes courses in agriculture, agribusiness, economics and business. Graduates find career opportunities in sales, finance, grain and livestock marketing, farm management, food industry management and the commodity futures industry. Students graduating in this sequence with the combination of business, science and applied agriculture courses are sought after and valuable employees in the agricultural industry.

Why Study Agriculture - Agribusiness?

The Agribusiness sequence prepares students for professional careers in agribusiness marketing, management, and finance. Agribusinesses process and market food and fiber products, supply input to agricultural production, and manage agricultural production. The student who chooses to study Agribusiness will be taking courses related to agriculture, economics and finance, mathematics and other related business courses to provide necessary skills for the advancement in this field. Practical experience also is a plus.

Related Majors

Related Skills

  • Applying of concepts and analytical tools related to economics and business
  • Analytical and problem solving skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Team and individual working capability
  • Time management skills
  • Networking skills

Being Successful in the Field

  • Since the foundation of the degree is business and economics, students may pursue employment opportunities outside of agriculture. Consider marketing, communications, public relations and management.
  • Investigate the different opportunities associated with bachelor's, master's and Ph.D. degrees.
  • A Bachelor's of Science in Agricultural Business and Economics may serve as a pre-professional degree for students interested in pursuing a degree in law or business.
  • Earn a graduate degree to pursue university teaching and advanced research positions.
  • Build a professional network for exploring career opportunities and job openings.
  • Join a campus and/or national club or organization.
  • Be prepared to live in rural and farming communities for some of the career areas in Agricultural Economics and Business and also be prepared to move from your local community in most cases.

Related Fields

Finance/Banking

  • Commercial Lending
  • Branch Management
  • Bank Operations
  • Lending
  • Commodities (Stocks & Futures)
  • Accounting
  • Risk Management
  • Appraisal
  • Real Estate
  • Insurance

Employers

  • Commercial banks
  • Credit unions
  • Savings and loans associations
  • Service banks
  • Mortgage banks
  • Insurance companies
  • Legal firms
  • Purchasing/supply firms
  • Farm cooperative services

Strategies

  • Seek out experience in financial areas through part-time employment or internships.
  • Develop skills in decision-making, policy analysis and technical analysis.
  • Explore ways to demonstrate competence in managing money and analyzing data.
  • Stay up to date on local, national and global economic trends.
  • Get involved in campus organizations such as the National Agri-Marketing Association or other Agribusiness clubs.
  • Research and contact major and/or local financial and banking institutions that specialize in the agricultural market.
  • Take additional courses in statistics, finance and accounting.

Sales/Marketing

  • Agricultural Marketing
  • Outside Sales
  • Retail Sales
  • Customer Relations
  • Public Relations
  • Advertising
  • Insurance Sales
  • Real Estate
  • Agricultural Consultation

Employers

  • Market analysis firms
  • Agribusinesses
  • Production industries
  • Food retailers and wholesalers
  • Food processors
  • Manufacturers of farm input supplies
  • Farm equipment manufacturers
  • Insurance firms
  • Media companies
  • Advertising agencies
  • Consulting firms

Strategies

  • Join a professional organization such as National Agri-Marketing Association.
  • Gain experience with retailers in the agricultural industry and other agribusinesses.
  • Develop skills in decision-making, policy analysis and technical analysis.
  • Develop excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Get involved in campus organizations such as the National Agri-Marketing Association and seek leadership roles.
  • Build relationships with major and local retail and marketing firms that specialize in agriculture.

Management/Development

  • Agricultural Management
  • Crop and Livestock Farm Management
  • Farm and Home Management
  • Agribusiness Management
  • Land Management
  • Environmental Resource Management
  • Rural Economic Development
  • Rural Planning
  • Strategic Planning
  • Agricultural Programming
  • Agricultural Consultation

Employers

  • Agribusinesses
  • Farm-input-supply businesses
  • Commodity processors
  • Landscape design and maintenance firms
  • Production industries
  • Feed lot operations
  • Feed and seed companies
  • Food wholesalers and retailers
  • Gas, electric, and water distributors
  • USDA
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Law firms

Strategies

  • Join a professional organization such as Institute of Food Technologists or International Food and Agribusiness Management Association.
  • Pursue experiences with management companies through part-time employment, internships or co-ops.
  • Develop your skills indecision-making, policy analysis and technical analysis.
  • Develop excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Stay up to date on local, national and global economic trends.
  • Become involved in campus organizations such as the NAMA/Agribusiness club.
  • Research and contact management organizations that specialize in agriculture.
  • Be prepared to start in entry-level management trainee positions.

Agricultural Equipment Systems Management

  • Purchasing/Buying
  • Dealership Management
  • Customer Relations
  • Wholesale and Retail Sales
  • Environmental Technology
  • Farm Supply Management
  • Teaching/Training
  • Logistics

Employers

  • Agricultural support companies
  • Agricultural machinery manufacturers
  • Farm machinery sales and service companies
  • Landscape development and maintenance industry
  • Farm input supply businesses
  • Farm and garden supply stores
  • Wholesale distributors
  • Logistics firms

Strategies

  • Develop awareness and understanding of the farm machinery and equipment market, both nationally and internationally.
  • Explore current and past research into the development of basic and advanced farm and agricultural equipment.
  • Obtain retail and/or wholesale sales experience, preferably in the field of agriculture or farm supply companies.
  • Get involved in related student organizations.
  • Develop strong interpersonal and communication skills, especially for sales-related positions.

Rural Development/Resource Economic

  • Land Management
  • Environmental Resource Management
  • Rural Economic Development
  • Rural Planning
  • Policy Analysis
  • Timberland Economy
  • County Planning

Employers

  • Local, state and federal government
  • USDA
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Gas, water and electric distributors
  • Coal companies
  • Railroads
  • Law firms

Strategies

  • Develop excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Stay up to date on local, national and global economic trends.
  • Develop your skills in decision-making, policy analysis and technical analysis.
  • Complete an internship with a government agency.
  • Volunteer to assist a faculty member with his or her research.

Government/Nonprofit

  • State and Federal Conservation
  • Health and Regulatory Inspection
  • Agricultural Inspection
  • Legislation
  • Policy Analysis
  • Association Representation

Employers

  • State and local government
  • Federal government agencies including: US Department of Agriculture, National Parks, Army
  • Corps of Engineers, Environmental Protection Agency, Bureau of Land Management
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Advocacy groups
  • International agencies & non-governmental organizations

Strategies

  • Gain exposure and experience by volunteering with agencies such as 4-H.
  • Find an internship with a government agency.
  • Develop excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Learn about the federal government application process.
  • Maintain a high grade point average.

Education

  • K-12 schools
  • Colleges and universities
  • Research institutions
  • Extension services
  • Farm information services utilizing mass communication

Employers

  • K-12 schools
  • Colleges and universities
  • Research institutions
  • Extension services
  • Farm information services utilizing mass communication

Strategies

  • Volunteer to assist a faculty member with his or her research.
  • Gain certification to teach K-12. Earn a Ph.D. for university teaching.
  • Learn to work well with all types of people.
  • Get involved in relevant activities such as tutoring, peer mentoring, etc.
  • Be prepared to live in a rural community for extension positions.

Other Professions

  • Credit Analyst
  • Farm economics and policy analysis
  • Farm Management
  • Financial Services
  • Grain Merchandiser
  • Insurance Underwriter
  • International development in agriculture
  • Livestock Buyer
  • Market Advisor
  • Marketing
  • Professor
  • Public Relations
  • Retail Manager
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Technical and management positions in farming

Career Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Megan Kayfish  110 Student Services Building  meturne@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-0735 

Internship Coordinator

Name Office Email Phone
David Malone  Ropp 124A  dmalone@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-8767 

Applying to Illinois State

Illinois State's preferred filing period for freshman students for the fall semester is September 1-November 15. Applying early is encouraged, as the University must limit enrollment due to space at the University and in specific majors/programs. Visit the Office of Admissions to apply today!

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

This information is based on requirements for the academic year(s) indicated. Students should consult the catalog year they were admitted under for their academic requirements.

Applying to Illinois State

Illinois State's preferred filing period for fall transfer students is September 1-January 15. For the spring semester, the preferred filing period is from April 1-August 1. You are encouraged to apply early in the preferred filing period for best consideration for admission into competitive majors. Visit the Office of Admissions to apply today!

Minimum GPA

2.00

Middle 50% GPA

2.46 - 3.17

Required Courses

None

Recommended Courses

  • Fundamentals of Chemistry (CHE 110) and Lab (CHE 112)
  • Finite Mathematics (MAT 120)
  • Introduction to the Agriculture Industry (AGR 109)

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

Academic Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Katelynn Clement  Ropp 125F  kdcleme@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-2489 

Middle 50% GPA

2.46 - 3.17

Plans of Study and Progress Tracking

Application Period

Application always available

Application Information

Current students can use the Apply to Your Program tool on My.IllinoisState.edu.

Academic Advising

Name Office Email Phone
Katelynn Clement  Ropp 125F  kdcleme@ilstu.edu  (309) 438-2489 
2016-08-03T11:23:40.188-05:00 2016
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