Union County Public Schools is offering students an opportunity to explore and engage in one of the fastest-growing industries in the state and region. Agrotechnology (AgTech) is the integration of technology in the agricultural industry. Agriculture careers involve more than farming. Agricultural education prepares students for over 300 careers in agriculture, such as production, financing, processing, marketing, veterinary medicine, robotics, automation and agricultural product distribution.
East Union Middle offers AgTech. Students study plants and animal science, biotechnology and livestock management. Students can continue in the AgTech pathway at Forest Hills High to further their education, connect with agribusiness leaders and explore career options.
- Interest in AgTech is growing and it supports other district offerings such as culinary, automotive and health sciences.
- Union County’s agricultural production accounts for 55% of its land mass (186,626 acres). While agriculture occupies the bulk of the land, few students know the great potential and range of options that agriculture and/or agricultural-related fields can provide for their future.
- There are several career options in agriculture, yet there is a labor shortage.
How are AgTech classes offered?
- AgTech is introduced to all students through project-based learning, which is applied across all content areas.
- All sixth-grade students take AgTech as a six-week course.
- Seventh- and eighth-grade students elect to be in AgTech.
- Fundamentals of Agriculture
- Exploring Animal and Plant Science
- Exploring Food and Agricultural Products Introduction to Biotechnology Agricultural and Environmental
- Biotechnology Exploring Robotics Design and Modeling Automation and Robotics
How will teachers make AgTech relevant to students?
- Students work on a range of hands-on projects inside and outside of the school’s greenhouse.
- Students participate in field trips around the county to expose them to the agriculture industry in Union County and hear from guest speakers.
How will students benefit from AgTech?
- Students can join the Future Farmers of America (FFA) Organization as agriculture students.
- Students will improve their science, technology, engineering and math skills.
- Students will gain an understanding of various sciences.
- Students will learn about careers they may not have known existed.
Union County Public Schools is thankful for the support of partnerships including the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, South Piedmont Community College and Wingate University.