What You'll Experience
You’ll take part in classes and get hands-on training from highly skilled faculty with diverse expertise in horticulture, agriculture, technology, and business. Here is your chance to make professional connections and network and to really explore your interests and passions. With open access to all facilities, you can dive as deep as you want.
The program works closely with alumni who hire interns and assist with personal connections and introductions in the industry. A few examples:
Benary - Greenhouse Growing Internship
Hortifrut - Berry Breeding Internship
Syngenta Flowers - Variety of Internships in Research, Breeding, and Operations.
AgTech is the intersection of agriculture and technology; it is an emerging industry with new career opportunities. Sustainable Agriculture Technology students study horticulture and plant science curriculum and develop their skills in a broad range of agriculture technology topics including: data management, GIS mapping, networking technology tools on farm, producing plants in nutrient film technique, deep raft, ebb and flood, and substrate hydroponic production systems, electrical and hydraulic engineering basics, soil moisture sensing, and energy and water conservation.
We have one of the regional experts on staff teaching propagation. Most of our propagation occurs in our Propagation house with bottom heat, fog and a solar accumulator for fog timing. There are lots of career opportunities in nurseries, greenhouses, or producing seeded vegetable transplants for large farms.
Organic Food Production
We have a fully operational CCOF certified organic farm. It may be small but packs a big punch. We use the farm to teach farm management as well as pest management and marketing. We focus on commercial applications of Best Management Practices and grow the important crops in our area. Our instructors have over 50 years of combined farm experience including research and consulting. We offer enterprise opportunities as well. Careers include growing crops, marketing crops, sales positions in materials used on the farm, packing and logistical support as well as farm advisors, organic inspectors and USDA jobs.
We have a soil science course that examines physical, chemical, and biological composition of soils, local soil formations, methods of soil sampling and testing, fertilizing techniques, production and use of organic and chemical fertilizers, green manures, and relationship between soils and human culture. In all Horticulture classes, you will learn aspects of soil and water management.
You will learn to identify pests, diseases and weeds, know their life cycles and common methods of control, including biological or chemicals (both organic and inorganic). Our pest management classes can lead to careers in IPM, Applicator license, or even a PCA.
Controlled Environment Agriculture (hydroponics and aquaponics)
This expanding field brings together the greenhouse crop production careers with food production. We have 3600 square feet of greenhouse space dedicated to growing food crops in controlled environments. Aquaponics is well represented with a University of Virgin Islands system. We grow our Persian cucumbers in our high tech greenhouse in a Rockwool high wire system. There are over 1 million acres of food being grown under cover in the world, so you can go anywhere in the world and grow crops.
Sustainable Landscape Design and Installation
Concerned about proper plant selection and hardscaping materials for landscaping in a dry climate? We offer a series of classes that focus on sustainable materials, construction, and irrigation management, as well as designing beautiful landscapes. With our permaculture class, you will learn permaculture design. Students have the opportunity to design several landscapes for real clients. Classes may lead to a career as designers, installations, water auditing, landscape maintenance, or edible landscaping.
Container Crop Production or Floriculture
We have over 6000 square feet of nursery production facilities that grow crops from Salvias and California natives to beautiful sun or shade perennials, bedding, and cut flower crops, as well as beautiful flowering baskets and edible perennials and transplants for our Mothers Day Sale. Our classes oversee the production of many of our crops and students can have an opportunity to manage a crop if they apply themselves. Course work can lead to grower jobs, propagation, marketing, sales, quality control, or research.