New agriculture degree popular with school leavers

Agriculture is proving a popular study choice at the University of Adelaide this year.

Agriculture is proving a popular study choice at the University of Adelaide this year.
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Thursday, 14 January 2010

The University of Adelaide's new agriculture degree program, which combines science with practical and industry experience, has proved a popular choice with school leavers this year.

A total of 168 students from around Australia have applied for places in the 2010 Bachelor of Agricultural Sciences degree, which offers a combination of laboratory training and field work more relevant to industry needs.

Enrolments for the new program this year are expected to exceed student targets by 20%.

"This shows prospective students have strongly endorsed a new direction in agriculture education," says Professor Roger Leigh, Head of the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine at the University of Adelaide.

"The changing face of the rural sector, an impending global food crisis and the impacts of climate change require a more scientific approach to agriculture as we tackle these challenges of the 21st century," Professor Leigh says.

The new program is a merger of the Bachelor of Agriculture degree with the Bachelor of Science (Agricultural Science) degree and includes courses at both the Waite and Roseworthy campuses.

"The emphasis on science in the merged degree will not be at the expense of practical skills taught in the program. A number of interstate field trips are included, as well as 12-week industry internships for students in the second year of their degree," Professor Leigh says.

Professor Leigh says under the revised agriculture curriculum, students will graduate with a wider range of skills more relevant to the rural sector and a broader career path than in the past.

"The future of agriculture is very positive in Australia, albeit a changing landscape, and as a university we are responding to that.

"Statistically speaking, an agriculture degree has offered good job prospects nationally over the past 10 years, with around 80% of those graduates who have sought jobs securing employment within four months of leaving university. There's no reason why that trend should not continue, and even improve," Professor Leigh says.


Contact Details

Professor Roger Leigh
Head of School
Agriculture, Food and Wine
University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 7136

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762