Agriculture Career Training at Northeast Iowa Community College

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NICC_agricultureAgriculture programs are among the top reasons hundreds of students enroll at Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) each year. Whether it is the College’s award-winning faculty, state-of-the-art facilities and robotic technology, or the opportunity to gain real-world experience through an internship, graduates find that their education has opened doors to vast career opportunities in agriculture.

The Agriculture and Animal Sciences programs provide unique learning opportunities for students at Iowa’s Dairy Center, located on the Calmar campus. Agriculture students enjoy working in the outdoors and caring for large and small animals. Students may specialize in the areas of dairy and beef science, veterinary care, agriculture business, agricultural finance and production, including the latest technology in precision farming and robotics.

Two new programs opening in fall 2017, Swine Production and Veterinary Assistant, award students a certificate that leads to employment or an opportunity to continue their education in an ag-related program at the College.

Swine Production

The College and several local agriculture businesses have worked together to develop this Swine Production career pathway certificate to train students in swine science, breeding, farrowing and nursery management, pork quality assurance, genetics and farm record-keeping.

This spring Business and Community Solutions is piloting the certificate with three courses that begin March 14 and end June 8. In fall 2017, the College will offer the certificate as part of its Agriculture and Animal Sciences curriculum.

“The objective of this certificate is to attract young people graduating from high school, as well as under-employed and unemployed people, into a career field where they are in-demand,” explained Dan Lane, NICC agriculture instructor. “Swine Production certificate graduates could earn $30,000 or more – that’s a significant paycheck. They may also transfer six career pathway certificate credits into the Agricultural Production degree to continue their education.”

To learn more about the Swine Production program, call 800.728.2256, ext. 399, or visit

Veterinary Assistant

Do you enjoy animals and handling livestock, but prefer a clinic setting to working on the farm? This certificate and its job market focus may be exactly what you’re looking for!

“Completing this program allows graduates to work with both people and animals,” said Christopher Harvey, D.V.M., NICC agriculture instructor and Large Animal Veterinary Technician program director. “The cost to you is lower in this one-year certificate, and graduates can enter the workforce or apply for entrance into the Large Animal Vet Tech program transferring their credits.”

Learn about animal physiology, veterinary medical terminology, office reception and administration, records and procedural management in a veterinary office, equine science and animal handling. Your skills will be in-demand in veterinary offices in northeast Iowa and our region.

Learn more! Be Bold. Visit


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