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Major in Agriculture and Food Security

Students in this major are the protectors of the world’s plant-based food supply. The Agriculture and Food Security major prepares students to manage plant pests and diseases from a holistic perspective.

Students learn to understand the complexity of relationships within agricultural ecosystems, how external factors influence these systems, and how to effectively manage pests and diseases without incurring undue risks to human or environmental health. Course offerings begin with a strong scientific base in biology and chemistry, and expand to focus on crop science, soil science, integrated pest management, and plant pathology.

The major is an exciting blend of classroom instruction and field experience that is tailored to the eventual employment goals of the student. Graduates who can evaluate and diagnose pest and plant disease problems and recommend economically and ecologically sound ways to correct them are in great demand. Excellent employment opportunities exist with state, federal, and international agricultural, environmental, and regulatory agencies, agrichemical companies, agricultural and environmental consulting firms, food processing, forest product, and vegetable and seed companies, and a wide range of other agribusiness enterprises.

Employment and Career Possibilities within this major

  • Crop Consultant or Researcher
  • Seed Producer
  • Farm Owner or Manager
  • Soil Chemist, Researcher, or Manager
  • Greenhouse Manager
  • Soil Conservationist
  • Nursery Operator
  • Weed Scientist
  • Plant Breeder
  • Government Agency Employee
  • Plant Nutrition Specialist
  • AgriChemical Company Employee

Examples of Required/Preferred Classes for First Year Students

  • AS 101: Introductory Animal Science
  • CropS/Hort 102: Cultivated Plants
  • CropS/Hort 202: Crop Growth & Development
  • Chem 101: Introduction to Chemistry
  • Chem 102: Chemistry Related to Life Sciences
  •  AFS 101: Introduction to Agricultural and Food Systems

Required Math

  • Stat 212: Introduction to Statistical Methods

Transfer Pathways

Many of our best students attend local community colleges prior to transferring to WSU. Below is a list of suggested WSU courses to take locally and transfer into WSU. You can find your institution’s equivalent courses with our Transfer Course Search Tool or submit a course for evaluation with our Course Evaluation Request Form

  • BIOLOGY 106 Intro to Organismal Biology, 107 Intro to Cell Biology and Genetics or 120 Introductory Botany (2 of these)
  • CHEM 101 Introduction to Chemistry or 105 Principles of Chem I
  • CHEM 102 Chemistry Related to Life Sciences or 106 Principles of Chem II
  • ENGLISH 101 Introductory Writing
  • COM 102 Speaking in the Digital Age
  • ECONS 101 Fundamentals of Microeconomics
  • SOIL_SCI 201: Soil a Living System
  • ANIM_SCI 101 Introduction to Animal Science
  • WSU UCORE [DIVR] course
  • WSU UCORE [HUM] course
  • STAT 212 Introduction to Statistical Methods

Check out our Transfer Student page for more information about the College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences (CAHNRS) Transfer Student Experience!

Student Organizations/Clubs Associated with this Major

  • Horticulture Club

Information for New Students

This is a Bachelor of Science Degree in Agricultural and Food Systems with a major in Agriculture and Food Security. It is managed by the Department of Crop & Soil Sciences.

From a Student’s Perspective…

Letty Trejo
Agriculture & Food Security had all the right classes for me to understand agricultural systems and all the factors that play a role in those systems. It was heavy in biology and chemistry but also included some economics and sociology courses. This major gave me the knowledge I needed to be able to join the agriculture industry with a strong understanding of its components. Currently, I work with the pear ripening program at Stemilt Growers in Wenatchee, WA. Ag & Food Security really prepared me for this with the chemistry, horticulture, food science, and plant pathology courses.  – Letty Trejo, Class of 2019

Contact Information

Dr. Colette Casavant
Academic Coordinator
AFS & IPS
colette.casavant@wsu.edu
(509) 335-8406

For information about advising visit the CAHNRS Academic Advising page.