Lewis, Jensen, Park, and Walton
Students majoring in food and agricultural business are prepared for a wide variety of career opportunities. The focus of their studies is on the functioning of the agri-food sector in the global economic system and the economic principles for decision making by business managers, consumers, policymakers, and others within that sector. Students complete a curriculum designed to provide them with a broad-based education and the specialized skills necessary for a successful career in the agri-food industry or with a related organization or public agency. The curriculum builds upon the university-wide general education requirements by adding a set of directed electives from within the Herbert College of Agriculture, a set of core courses from within the Haslam College of Business, and a set of required courses within the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. Students customize their program by selecting among upper-division electives within the department. General elective hours in the curriculum allow flexibility for students to pursue a minor within some area of technical agriculture or another field such as communications. Students have ample opportunity to develop strong microcomputer skills and gain practical real-world experiences through case study analyses, the NAMA marketing team, internships, and extracurricular activities. Students must complete an experiential learning requirement involving either an internship, an undergraduate research project, or a study abroad experience.
Students graduating with a major in food and agricultural business have many career options. Many graduates take positions in management or marketing with businesses involved in the farm input supply sector. This would include large multinational corporations that manufacture inputs such as machinery, chemicals, and feed, as well as local retailers of such items. Other graduates manage operations involved in the production of agricultural commodities or the processing of food products. Graduates also find career opportunities with food distribution and retailing companies serving as managers, marketing representatives, or in areas of customer service and public relations. Graduates are employed in financial institutions, insurance agencies, or real estate companies. Many industry organizations and government agencies also have employment opportunities for our graduates. It is not uncommon for our graduates to take positions with businesses that are outside the agri-food industry. Graduates also find themselves well prepared for graduate study in agricultural and resource economics or agribusiness management, as well as for professional programs such as law.
Students who wish to target a specific career direction can choose to pursue one of the four optional concentrations: Agricultural Production and Technology Management, Law and Policy, Finance and Risk Management, and Food Industry Management. Because each of these concentrations requires students to complete a more specific set of courses than the base major, students must work closely with their advisor to assure that they schedule required courses prior to their planned graduation date. Many required courses are offered only once per academic year, while a few are offered only every other year. Students unable to complete the required courses as listed for one of the optional concentrations for any reason (e.g., scheduling conflicts with alternate-year courses) will revert to using the base Food and Agricultural Business major.
Universal Tracking (uTrack) is an academic monitoring system designed to help students stay on track for timely graduation. In order to remain on track, students must complete the minimum requirements for each tracking semester, known as milestones. Milestones include successful completion of specified courses and/or attainment of a minimum GPA. uTrack requirements only affect full-time, degree-seeking students who first entered Fall 2013 or later. uTrack does not apply to transfer students who entered prior to Fall 2015.