Misconceptions About Agriculture: Farmers Are Uneducated

As far as farming goes, it is quite the tiring and backbreaking profession, many farmers wake up in the early hours of the day and don’t go to bed until well after the sun sets. There is no doubting that the work of a farmer, though some challenge the intellect of those that do the work. Many believe that its just mindless work, and though it is physically challenging, it lacks the mental challenge. Along with this, many farmers face several hurtful and just outright incorrect stereotypes. Some of these stereotypes include being hillbillies, uneducated, having a big straw hat with overalls, missing teeth and even being unhygienic. Well it turns out none of these are true, and maybe after reading this your perception of a modern day farmer will change for the better.

If you haven’t already guessed from the title and what has been previously stated, we are going to try and debunk the myth of the thought that all farmers are uneducated. It turns out now that many people across the United States are going to college and receiving a four-year degree in order to enter the field of agriculture, specifically farming. Individuals not involved in agriculture, or who seem not to know anything about the field, believe that farmers don’t have any credentials or sense of a formal higher education. This can easily be proven incorrect, as “Nearly 30 percent of today’s farmers and ranchers have attended college, with over half of his group obtaining a degree. A growing number of today’s farmers and ranchers with four-year college degrees are pursuing post-graduate studies.” (www.cals.ncsu.edu, 2014) This shows a growing trend over time that the number of farmers that are educated in any sort of higher learning is steadily increasing, and will only increase as farming continues to evolve.

It is also believed that farming solely constitutes manual labor, and that in order to do this type of work there is no real necessity for a college education or degree. This also isn’t true, farmers nowadays are sticking to education in order to become more efficient, learn how to run the “business” end of a farm, become handymen and technologically capable to fix a machine that malfunctions, veterinarians for their sick animals, and even weatherman to attempt to make judgments on weather in regards to their crops and live stock. Another quote that also solidifies the legitimacy of the growing intellect of farms is this from cornucopia.com. “Today’s farmers are highly educated and many are experienced in fields that may, at first glance, seem unrelated to the business of farming. They come to farming prepared with life experience, advanced or technical degrees, and business skills.” (www.cornucopia.com, 2011) So with this given information it is safe to say that farmers are, in fact, educated and this myth is debunked. So the next time you think about a farmer, think less of a common stereotype, and more of the college degree that many of them hold in their hands.

Sources: http://www.cals.ncsu.edu/CollegeRelations/AGRICU.htm

http://www.cornucopia.org/2011/03/a-new-generation-of-farmers-young-educated-energetic/

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