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Career opportunities in agricultural science

Career opportunities in agricultural science

Careers
Published 17 Dec, 2021  ·  4-minute read

Modern agriculture is an exciting industry, with many opportunities to develop and integrate new technologies into farming practices.

Agricultural science is a growing industry, where you’ll work towards solving some of the world’s most pressing issues, such as improving food security and mitigating the increasing impacts of climate change.

With a degree from UQ, you’ll graduate with the skills, knowledge, and confidence to forge a successful career in agricultural science. You’ll enter the workforce with a qualification from the number one ranked university in Australia for agriculture.

So, if you’re interested in a fulfilling and exciting job in this field, keep reading to find out more about the career opportunities in agricultural science and the changes you’ll be making in this high-demand industry.

A growing industry

Agricultural science jobs are forecast to grow as the ever-increasing human population demands healthier and safer food, feed, fibre and fuel, and as urgent solutions are required to address environmental degradation and the impacts of climate change.

The gross value of Australian agricultural production in 2021-22 is forecast to reach $78 billion, with exports predicted to reach $61 billion. 

Such a strong economic outlook and demand means it’s an excellent time to begin a career in agricultural science.

Cultivate a career of your own

A career in agricultural science can involve working at multiple scales, including:

  • individual farms and small, local companies
  • governments, NGOs, and inter-governmental agencies such as the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation
  • major multinational companies.

You can take several exciting pathways with your qualification in agricultural science. We’ve collated a few examples of the career options available to our graduates in this field.

UQ Agricultural science student

Agricultural scientist

Agricultural scientists can find employment in a variety of settings, including government at every level, the private sector, and non-profit organisations. As a qualified agricultural scientist, you’ll have the opportunity to work in a diverse array of roles, from research and advisory roles, to administration, marketing, and media roles.

Your main responsibilities will include:

  • the collection and analysis of data and samples of produce, feed, and soil, and studying other factors affecting production
  • advising farmers and farm managers on ways to improve their crop production and livestock techniques
  • studying environmental factors affecting commercial crop production, pasture growth and animal breeding, and the growth and health of forest trees.

Some of the skills you’ll need to possess as an agricultural scientist include:

  • strong problem-solving skills
  • an interest in science, agriculture, and the environment
  • organisation and supervisory skills
  • the ability to clearly communicate, both verbally and written
  • strong teamwork skills.
UQ agricultural science students students learning about crops

Agronomist

As the impacts of climate change take hold, agronomy is an increasingly important field in high demand for experts with a passion for improving the use of plants for food, feed, fibre, and fuel. The best way to describe agronomy is the science of plants and soils, where your main role is to develop innovative farm practices and technologies to boost crop yields and farming profits.

In this career, you can expect to work closely with farmers and local companies as an educator and adviser, providing recommendations for methods and tools to grow crops sustainably and profitably.

Your main responsibilities will include:

  • examining crops for signs of disease and insect, weed or pest problems, or any issues with the soil
  • working with farmers to conduct trials and ensure the best possible quality crop yields
  • presenting findings of trials to farmers and implementing efficient farming practices (such as water efficiency and soil nutrition) as informed by your research
  • evaluating crop and soil data to find ways to improve crop quality and productivity while reducing environmental impacts.
UQ Agricultural scientist analysing crops

Researcher

It’s a booming time for agricultural science research, with an increasing demand for innovative solutions to issues that affect people around the world. As a qualified agricultural scientist researcher, you’ll contribute meaningfully to an industry that makes a genuine difference by developing research that proposes and implements game-changing, innovative, and future-focussed solutions.

Read more about the current advances in agricultural science happening at UQ, for a glimpse of what you can do as a researcher in this field:

Study Agricultural Science at UQ

Agricultural science is a growing field with plenty of opportunities for anyone interested in the production of food, feed, fibre, and fuel, and sustainable land management practices. It’s perfect for anyone with an inquisitive, scientific mind, who is comfortable with problem solving, data analysis, and exploring real-life biological and ecological interactions.

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in agricultural science, be sure to make UQ your university of choice for study. We offer two agricultural science programs from our beautiful Gatton campus, where you’ll have access to world-class facilities and lecturers who are experts in their field.

Explore the Bachelor of Agricultural Science.

Explore the Master of Agricultural Science.

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