Ozarks Technical Community College is offering a agriculture degree beginning this fall.
The college’s turf and landscape management program and current agriculture courses are merging for several reasons.
“We felt it would give agriculture students who were planning to transfer to a four-year school more options for transfer. Also, more students interested in the turf and landscape program may consider having the option of transferring and getting a higher degree after completing their OTC program,” said Layton Childress, dean of technical education at OTC.
“Since many outlying school districts offer agriculture programs, it seemed like a natural fit for students to continue after high school to get an agriculture degree with several options for areas of emphasis.”
Danelle Maxwell, turf and landscape management instructor and chair of the Industrial & Manufacturing Department, said the new program would target A+ students in agriculture school districts.
The A+ program is a state program that pays a qualifying student’s tuition to a community college.
“There is a need by those students from those schools for this program,” she said.
The program emphasis will shift to agriculture courses while turf and landscape courses will become elective courses.
Maxwell said there is a greater interest in the agriculture program since OTC and College of the Ozarks in Hollister signed an articulation agreement last fall to make for an efficient transition from the completion of an OTC Associate of Arts degree to a Bachelor of Arts at C of O for transfer students pursuing agriculture students.
The agreement designates certain credits earned at OTC to apply to specific agriculture course requirements. Missouri State University also accepts OTC agriculture courses toward its agriculture degree, Maxwell said.
“Agriculture remains a big business in the region and there is a real need to meet that demand here. There is a real need for a college education in agriculture,” Maxwell said.
Steve Koehler is coordinator of media relations at Ozarks Technical Community College. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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