Represent farmers and ranchers. Serve your community. If this sounds interesting, you may enjoy a career as an extension agent.
What Does a Career as an Extension Agent Look Like?
Most extension agents with education in soil science work for land-grant universities or state or county agencies as an expert, teacher or advisor on topics relating to agriculture, farming, ranching or animal production. They serve the local community by mediating with local government and advocating for the farmers or ranchers while also promoting sustainable farming or ranching methodologies.
Working as an extension agent usually entails:
- Building relationships with local conservationists, farmers, ranchers or other agricultural organizations to determine local needs, problems and issues.
- Communication with local and regional government to determine needs of the community.
- Development of educational programs that bridges issues of concern to local conservationists, farmers and ranchers and facilitate compliance with or application of regulations.
- Provision of education and resources to overcome obstacles and solve problems or otherwise improve the health of businesses, farmers, ranchers, citizens while working within regulatory considerations.
- Development and management of supportive programs that assist in progress and growth or finding solutions to problems.
- Recruitment of volunteers and organization of volunteer organizations that promote progress and cooperation between local citizens and government or business interests.
- Working with local programs such as FFA, 4-H, community colleges, community organizations and educational facilities to disseminate education, promote interest in agriculture and farming and inspire youth to stay in the community and consider agriculture as a career or get involved in sustainability efforts.
To work in this field, you must be knowledgeable in your area of specialty and invested in the needs of the community you serve.
Extension Agent Salary and Demand
The median salary for an extension agent in North Carolina is $37,588. Salary varies considerably by experience, expertise and level of education.
Job demand varies by state.
What Education is Required to Work as an Extension Agent?
Most extension agents have a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree. Those that teach classes on a college or university level or perform research typically have a PhD.
Explore the many related educational programs available at NC State here:
- Majors, Minors & Certificates
Extension Agent Job Opportunities
Explore extension agent job opportunities.
Ready to Get Started?
Work with policy makers and local farmers to find solutions that benefit all involved parties. Jumpstart your career by applying to a soil science program today.