Story by Andrew Bridges
Valley will roll the tractors out and get their hands dirty. With a 7-1 vote from the Curriculum Committee which is made up of faculty members who represent each division, an Agriculture Business major has been established. Seven new classes will be introduced in the Fall of 2012, starting with an Introduction to Agriculture class.
“The Business department is totally behind it,” Larry Stockman, chair of the Business Division, said. He and other members of the department are excited about the new classes.
Staff members raised the idea of an Agri-Business degree after a market research survey during the FFA Ag. Day in mid-March. The survey showed that out of 300 students, who were freshman through senior in high school, 75 said that they would very much like to come to Valley if the college had an Ag. program.
“I feel very confident with this program,” Chief Academic Officer Sharon Weiser said, adding she is confident it will bring new students to campus.
Luke Weinreich, a sophomore at Missouri Valley, said when the program was first being considered, “I would love it. Marshall is a community that is surrounded by agriculture. My family has a farm just north of town and it would be great to have the opportunity to gain knowledge in agriculture along with putting it into practice on our farm.”
Larry Godsey, who holds a doctorate from MU, will be hired as an adjunct faculty member for the new classes, which include agricultural topics of marketing, pricing, management, and policy. While the core Business classes are part of fulfilling the major, the agriculture courses will mainly be 300- and 400- level.
“Personally, I think it will be an excellent major,” Chad Jaecques, MVC marketing and media director, said.
By adding an agricultural major to Valley, MVC could help Saline County and the state of Missouri’s agriculture thrive even more. The state of Missouri is second in the nation in total farms.