Forget the MBA, get an ag degree instead

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Is an agriculture degree a better decision than an MBA? Investment guru Jim Rogers says, “yes.” 

"If you've got young people who don't know what to do, I'd urge them not to get MBAs, but to get agriculture degrees," Rogers told CNBC.com.

In the CNBC report, Rogers sees the finance industry slipping into secular decline.  For young people pursuing careers, farming – not finance – may be the best option. 

"Finance has been good the past 30 years, but it was not good the 30 years before that, and it's happening again," Rogers said. "Finance is in decline. In the future, the center of the world will not be finance—it's going to be the producers of real goods."

Timothy Burcham, dean of agriculture and technology at Arkansas State University, agrees.

"We are going to be trying to feed 9 billion people by 2050 with the same number of acres of arable land," Burcham said. “The opportunities for a person that has a graduate degree in agriculture are great now, but they are going to be really, really excellent going into the future."

Read more from CNBC here.

Roger’s advice is in stark contrast to a 2012 Yahoo! article naming three agricultural majors as some of the most “useless” majors offered by colleges. The article prompted a number of rebuttals from across the country. Read, “Commentary: Yahoo, please don’t mess with the goat ropers”  

Graduates with agricultural degrees have relatively low unemployment rates, and the starting salaries for these grads do more than just pay the bills. These ag graduates are in demand, especially as technology plays a larger role in the field.



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Mr. Wizard the Lizard    
USA  |  October, 15, 2013 at 01:13 PM

An individual, with an Agriculture Degree, is considered to be a "recipe" follower. Information, data, and research that is 40 to 50 years old, in Livestock Production, and blindly following the "gods" in crop production. Today's World Economic Climate requires thinkers, problem solvers, and innovators!

jd    
WI  |  October, 16, 2013 at 08:23 AM

You are sadly mistaken to think that there are no innovators inn agriculture. Your twisted perception of reality leaves your mind so skewed that I bet you think beef comes from your local Wal-Mart, not from a cattle ranch in Kansas. Today's World Economic Climate does require the type of people that you listed, and that is exactly what they are getting. Research as well as cutting edge technology and management have increased yields substantially over the last decade, and that trend is increasing at an exponential rate, while using less chemicals and fertilizers to get there. Farmers are feeding more people with less acres, so people like you have space to build your condo in the country and look down on them for being outdated hillbillys.

    
October, 16, 2013 at 03:18 PM

Mister Wizard the Lizard is an unemployed MBA that flunked Animal Science 101.

    
October, 16, 2013 at 03:18 PM

Mister Wizard the Lizard is an unemployed MBA that flunked Animal Science 101.

Tonia    
Waterloo, Iowa  |  October, 21, 2013 at 08:56 AM

Mr. Wizard the Lizard, there was a time when I might have agreed with you. Despite my geographic proximity to some of the most productive farmers in the world, I, too, thought of them as less educated and more 'stuck in their ways'. Fate brought me into the industry and I have to say I'm shocked at the amount of technological and scientific savvy today's farmers have. Not only are they knowledgeable about biology, chemistry, genetics, math and mechanics; they are constantly looking for ways to increase production and decrease inputs. If you think that farmers aren't thinkers, problem solvers and innovators you should do yourself a favor and actually talk to one.


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