Agricultural Engineering

Overview of Agricultural Engineering

Agricultural programs are growing in number and there are many postsecondary schools that offer Bachelor’s degrees and advanced degrees in agricultural sciences.  An agricultural engineer will use their knowledge of engineering technologies to find more efficient ways to use natural resources. They will use their expertise in all phases of agriculture from cultivation to proper storage and crop projections.

If you are interested in finding more efficient ways to farm, store and preserve food, construct more effective farming equipment, analyze existing systems to find ways to better them, a degree in this specialty will put you in a great position to do so.  A degree in this area also prepares one to specialize in power systems and usage, machinery design, and food and bioprocess engineering. People with degrees in this area can also be involved in sales, development or management.

Curriculum for Agricultural Engineering

Agricultural engineering is an expanding industry and many accredited postsecondary schools have degree programs that included course like but not limited to:

• Introduction to Agricultural Engineering
• General Chemistry
• General Chemistry Laboratory
• Engineering Graphics and Design
• Calculus and Analytic Geometry
• Introductory Matrix Theory
• Engineering for Agricultural and Biological Systems
• Introduction to Computing with Application to Engineering and Physical Science
• Engineering for Bioprocessing and Bioenvironmental Systems
• General Physics
• Engineering Mechanics, II¬Dynamics
• Introduction to Electric and Electronic Circuits
• Introduction to Mathematical Statistics and Probability
• Engineering Modeling Under Uncertainty
• Thermodynamics

Like any engineering program, students will have a heavy emphasis on math and science as well as mechanics and physics.  Programs in the area of agricultural engineering will also have a focus in biology.  The idea of agricultural engineering is to improve efficiency in terms of how we use our natural and farming resources through the tools we use and the over all approach so taking elective course in green technology or systems, if the school you attend offers them, would also be a good idea.  There are also Master’s degree programs available in this field.

How to Enroll in Agricultural Engineering

There are many opportunities in agricultural engineering and education outside a strict agricultural engineering degree.  There are degrees in agricultural education, agricultural systems technology, crop science, horticulture, biological science and a wide range of degrees in agribusiness.  There are also Master’s degrees in agricultural systems technology, irrigation engineering, and professional studies in horticulture along with a PhD program in irrigation engineering.  With all of these different focuses, a student interested in agriculture will be sure to find a specialty that meets a specific interest.

Benefits and Rewards of Agricultural Engineering

We are living in an era in which people are concerned about the environment and proper management of natural resources, a degree in agricultural engineering would put the recipient in a position to make a difference in this industry.  This degree puts the recipient in a position to evaluate farming and storage procedures to improve efficiency.  An agricultural engineer can also evaluate and design specific machinery involved in farming.

Job Opportunities in Agricultural Engineering

There are many different jobs one can do with an agricultural engineering degree from research positions in farming methods to design and production of machinery to sales and management.  This industry is experience a growth rate of 12 percent over the next decade.  As population grows, there is a greater need to explore new farming methods to increase crop production and storage methods along with renewable resources technology and conservation methodology.  The median income of an Agricultural engineer as of May 2008 was $68,730 annually.  This is a growing industry in a field that is geared towards making a difference in the environment.

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