Agriculture is not the usual degree program you might consider, and it is not even on google’s top 10 paying jobs in the Philippines. But then you woke up one day having the passion to push through the course. Do you eagerly want to become an agriculturist someday? Here are some of the things you need to anticipate:
1. It is not all about plant cultivation under the sun
When some people hear ‘agriculture’, they will immediately say ‘ah, magsasaka’ (ah, farmer) and what they really mean is planting crops all day and going home with little money (Note: There’s nothing wrong about being a farmer because they bring food to our table. We should be thankful). Plant cultivation is just one component in agriculture. Expect laboratory works, higher math and science subjects, eye-to-eye encounter with chicken and pig, and more!
2. Coursework might be challenging
Prepare your dose of caffeine to stay awake during hell weeks because your coursework is not as easy as you imagined. Your class schedule might run from 7am to 7pm with no breaks because some laboratory class will consume 1 to 6 hours of your time per day. You will become pro at time management. LOL.(forgive my handwriting skillz. :D)
- Being fussy is not encouraged
One of the things you will do under agriculture is field work and under this you might encounter doing the following: stepping on the mud and feeling your feet going down until you reach the hard pan during rice planting, slaughtering livestock animals, exploring grassy fields to complete your weed and insect collections, getting filthy hands when feeling the texture of your soil sample, sweating a lot while conducting your survey in the community, or walking onan undeveloped road in a remote area while tracing the market channels. You got no time to be fussy!
- There are a lot of opportunities
Do you know that you can get agriculture as pre-med or even pre-law course? Do you want to travel for free? – field works will allow you to go to different places. Do you want to drive your own car after graduation? – work on sales – they usually provide car incentives which you can acquire later on. Are you dreaming of becoming a scientist? – do research, publish and be awarded as academician or national scientist. Other opportunities under agriculture will be discussed on a separate blog.
(Sunset in Caramoan, Camarines Sur)
- Learning is diverse and continuous
If you enjoy studying, then you are on the right track. Agriculture branchesto different disciplines. You will have fun having shallow to deep lessons coming from crops, weeds, insects, animals, molecular biology, economics and marketing. Discovering the wonders of producing food won’t stop in the classroom because agriculture is progressive – there will be new technologies and innovations to improve food production from time to time which makes learning an endless process.
- Meeting people from different walks of life.
One of the greatest opportunities in agriculture is to meet people from different types of jobs and different levels of society. You can encounter farmers, researchers, traders, travelers, government officials (from local to national level), doctors, lawyers, vendors, drivers, CEOs and even random strangers, and all of them have a story to share which will lead us to number 7.
(meeting some farmers)
- Broadens perspective
Have you ever heard generalizations about people (e.g. Ilocanos are kuripot)? You will meet Ilocanos spending more than you can imagine or investing on practical things – after all, inflation rate is so high that you need to spend your money wisely even if you are not an Ilocano! At this point, you might perceive Muslims as dangerous people because terrorist attacks are often linked to them but having a close encounter (as classmate/friend, interviewee) with them will tell you that they are generally good people. Eventually, you will be a better learner of life and people.
- It will strengthen your personality
The challenges and opportunities of agriculture will give you a tough mind, body and soul towards becoming a better version of yourself.
Agriculture is not as easy as 1-2-3 but I assure you it will surprise you with exciting activities. Do you have questions about other things to expect when you choose agriculture as your course in college? Let me know in the comment section.