Focus on High-Demand Careers: Precision Farming

Focus on High-Demand Careers: Precision Farming

Spring 2015

| By: Britten, Casey

Begin your career now in the high-demand industry of precision farming.

In addition to changing the way farmers approach their work, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) technology is demanding a new set of skills for everyone involved. “Using GPS to precisely track what’s being done in farm fields puts focus on the production and profit of each acre,” says Joe Sinkula, a precision agriculture instructor at Fox Valley Technical College.

Much of today’s agriculture equipment comes with systems needed for precision farming installed at the factory. “Farmers and their agronomists now have technology to bring operations to the next level,” states Sinkula. “Other schools have classes on precision farming, but Fox Valley Tech offers the only program in the state designed specifically for working adults, in addition to the latest equipment thanks to our partnerships with Service Motor Company and Riesterer & Schnell.”

The program is very accessible. It’s divided into three, six-week sections that can be taken in any order. “You learn how to collect data, analyze it, and then turn it all into useful information,” says Sinkula. “Our students gain real skills that are needed to make precision farming a part of their everyday work in agriculture.”

The classes feature hands-on practical learning. “Our first class included two area farmers and an agronomist,” says Sinkula. “We’re using one student’s farm as a real-world example.”

Twice as Nice

For the 2nd consecutive year, Fox Valley Technical College’s Agriculture department was named the #1 agriculture program in the state by the Wisconsin Association of Agriculture Educators. The honor recognizes the college’s Horticulture and Outdoor Power Equipment programs as well.

93% job placement for graduates of FVTC’s Horticulture, Outdoor Power Equipment, and Ag-related programs.
FVTC’s Graduate Employment Research Report, 2014