Sustainable Agriculture

(Grades 11-12) Half Day (AM or PM) 120 minutes daily

This two-year revolving program provides students with skills and knowledge necessary in pursuing careers and college studies related to today’s northeastern diversified agriculture setting. The course material encompasses the basics of this food system pertinent to local agricultural businesses, dairy and livestock producers, vegetable producers and consumers. Topics include entrepreneurship, sustainable livestock/dairy production systems, animal anatomy/physiology, food production and other elements of diversified agriculture.

FALL 2015: Northeast Livestock Production and Agribusiness Students learn how diversified livestock production is managed in Vermont which may include beef, sheep, swine and chickens as these producers join the dairy producers in an ever widening supply of animal products for consumers. Topics Explored: Animal Behavior, Soil and Land Evaluation, Beef Production, Animal Growth and Development, Northeastern Meat Systems, Value Added Food Production.

SPRING 2016: Animal Science and Food Products Students study animals from the cellular level up through gross anatomy relating this knowledge to its application in animal production systems. Topics Explored:Sheep Production, Swine Production, Chicken Production, Cheese Production, Vegetable Production, Agricultural Entrepreneurship.

FALL 2016: Sustainable Dairy, Forage and Crop Production Livestock and food crop production as part of Vermont’s sustainable food system is explored, including diversification of food production and value added product potential. Visits to locally owned farms and agricultural businesses help develop student understanding of the depth and importance of this sector of the community to the local economy. Topics Explored: Properties of Soil, Anatomy/Physiology of Animal Digestion, Animal Nutrition, Forages, Pasture Management, Northeastern Food Systems, Value Added Food Products.

SPRING 2017: Ecology of Plant and Animal Agriculture Course will look at agriculture from an ecological perspective. How the elements of livestock and food crop production impact our soil, water and carbon cycle. Topics Explored: Soil Ecology, Water Resources, Anatomy/Physiology of Lactation, Poultry Production, Composting, Plant/Vegetable Production, Agricultural Entrepreneurship.

Prerequisite: 10 credits on transcript upon entering the program.
Strongly Recommended: Biology, Intro Chemistry, two credits of math.

Credits: 1.5 elective credits per semester. Students who complete all four semesters will be given 1 embedded science credit for one of the six total credits earned. Additionally, students who qualify and successfully complete the coursework may receive 3 credits in Livestock Production from Vermont Technical College.