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Strengths and Weaknesses of Land-Grant Two Year Technical Agriculture Programs as Perceived by Program Directors

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For this study, a census of Technical Agriculture Association (TAA) members was conducted to gather perceptions of six categories; 1) Problems, 2) Issues, 3) Strengths, 4) Weaknesses, 5) Faculty Concerns, and 6) Support, as they relate to two-year technical programs that specialize in agriculture. According to respondents, the greatest problems facing technical agriculture programs are that industry need for graduates continually exceeds the number of graduates and high school counselors do not view technical agriculture programs as valuable as B.S. programs. The greatest issue is with research and scholarly literature focused on technical agriculture programs. The greatest strength of technical agriculture programs is their association with a land-grant university. The greatest weakness is the fact that technical agriculture programs are viewed as second class programs at the land-grant institutions. Directors perceive that faculty are most concerned about students entering the program lacking basic mathematical skills. On the issue of support for technical agriculture programs, directors strongly agreed that industry has a great interest in hiring the technical graduate. Some resulting recommendations are to maintain and strengthen relationships with industry, develop proactive recruitment plans,and increase admission standards.



Technical Agricultural Association, mathematical skills, recruitment plans, admission standards

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