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Degree Overview: Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Agriculture

Majors Overview April 22, 2015

Get information about Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree programs in Agriculture and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Programs in Agriculture

Schools offer an M.B.A. in Agriculture degree as a Master of Agricultural Economics or a Master of Agribusiness degree. Students enrolled in education programs in this field are taught high-level business and finance management skills and ways of applying them to the agricultural sector.

Topics feature innovative strategies for farm operations marketing and management, which also covers the production and distribution processes for fibers and foods. A research project is usually included in programs, which may also involve a thesis, and the degree can be completed by students within about two years.

Education Requirements

Competitive M.B.A. programs have both professional and academic requirements. There is a close examination of work experience during the admissions process; students are usually required to have a minimum of two years’ experience. The application also includes scores from the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) as a key component.

Students may also be required to complete prerequisite courses in economics, soil studies, farm management, and the plant and animal sciences before they are allowed to begin core coursework.

Coursework

Traditional business and finance courses comprise the core curriculum of the M.B.A. in Agribusiness program, although agricultural economics is the focus of several options. Core coursework may include topic areas such as the following:

•Futures trading
•Agricultural law
•Agricultural pricing
•Agricultural markets
•Farm management
•Agricultural economics

Career Choices

Graduates can choose from numerous career options in the public sector and private corporations, including job positions such as:

•Accounting manager
•Alternative energy consultant
•Marketing analyst
•Agricultural manager
•Bioterrorism consultant

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a decline of 19% in job growth has been predicted for farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2012, agricultural managers as a group brought in an average annual wage of $69,300.

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, much faster-than average job growth rate of 32% have been predicted for market research analysts; in May 2012, these professionals earned an average annual wage of $60,300 (BLS). Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks are expected to see an average job growth of 11% over the 2012 – 2022 decade, and in May 2012, these professionals banked an average annual wage of $35,170.

Continuing Education Choices

Holders of an M.B.A. in Agribusiness may seek continuing education by pursuing a Ph.D. in Agribusiness with a specialization in management strategy, managerial economics, or various other areas. In most programs, there is a heavy emphasis on research, and usually graduates seek careers in academia. However, doctorate holders may also seek employment with the government.

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