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PCC partners with Skyland Grain for new agriculture program

20 July 2016

Pratt Community College and Skyland Grain, LLC from Johnson, Kan are partnering together to add a new certificate program to the popular Agriculture and Ag Power departments. Students will be able to enroll in a Crop Application one year certificate program beginning this Fall. At the end of the program students will have learned fundamentals of agriculture science, technology and gain workforce experience from Skyland Grain.

Crop Applicator careers are on the rise according to PCC’s Career Coach. Job openings are projected to grow six percent over the next 10 Years and starting salary ranges between $44,000 and $55,000 at Skyland Grain. Crop Applicators are highly trained professionals specializing in pesticide handlers, sprayers and applicators, mixing pesticides, herbicides, or insect sprays and repellents for application on lawns, landscapes, crop fields and pastures. They are able to identify areas requiring treatment and they manage the transportation of equipment and chemicals to and from the treatment site.

Skyland Grain and PCC are working together to make this program a success for students. Skyland Grain’s CEO David Cron says PCC was a clear choice to partner with.

“I think one of the big reasons for choosing PCC was also their strong agriculture programs, commitment to agriculture and history with agriculture,” said Cron. “We are positive this new program will provide students with an avenue for a high paying, productive career in agriculture as well as provide well trained potential employees for Skyland.”

Pratt Community College’s Skyland Grain Crop Applicator option is a one year, 34 credit hour, Certificate Program. To successfully complete the Program, students are required to enroll in an occupational work experience course and be prepared to test for the Commercial Pesticide Applicator License and obtain a Class A Commercial Driver’s License upon employment.

“The Crop Applicator Program will provide students enrolled in the program excellent hands on experience,“ said Skyland Grain Agronomy Manager Justin Ochs. “The occupational workforce course will provide them with valuable experience, they will be exposed to situations over the course of a year that they could potentially see out in the field while on their new crop applicator job.”

Skyland Grain Assistant CEO David Rodriquez says that the new program will provide students with a long term career avenue.

“The program will provide students with the opportunity to not just get a job, it puts them in the driver seat of a spray rig so they can have a valuable long term career,” said Rodriguez.

Skyland Grain and PCC are offering scholarships to students who enroll in the program that will begin this Fall. For more information about the program contact Lori Montgomery at lorim@prattcc.edu or visit the Agriculture webpage.