Beginning September of 2022, Saskatchewan Polytechnic will be offering a new three-year Agriculture and Food Production diploma course at the Moose Jaw campus.
Identifying a need for multi-skilled workers in the agriculture sector, this program has been years in the making for Sask Polytech.
“I think it's very fair and safe to say that agriculture is still one of the major economic drivers within the province, and having a skilled labour force is essential,” said Jamie Hilts, Dean of the School of Mining, Energy and Manufacturing as well as the School of Natural Resources and Built Environment.
There are a wide variety of skills that will be taught, including farm management, agriculture machinery, agricultural technology, crop production and livestock production.
The course also looks at food security and solutions for the production of sustainable food.
Hilts feels that this new program will open up a lot of doors for those looking to get into the agriculture industry as the skills can be transferred over to several different sectors.
“It could be everything from agriculture marketing and business companies to food processing companies to agricultural commercial outlets to consulting companies, research operations within the province and beyond, agriculture equipment dealers, greenhouse and horticultural operators to livestock operations to both medium and large-scale farming,” he said.
The program will include three paid co-operative education work terms, so students will be able to get hands-on training while exposing them to the industry.
Hilts added that they are hoping to eventually grow the program so that graduates to continue their education into a degree opportunity at other educational institutes across Canada.
More information about the program can be found on Sask Polytech’s website.