Student investigating in field

Internship Requirements

Internships are a required component of all Agriculture programs. For a student to participate in the internship program, they must meet a minimum cumulative GPA requirement of 2.0 and be in full standing in the Agriculture Department. Additionally, a student in the Farm or Ranch Management programs must also earn a “C” or better in Farm Records (AGEC 145).

Farm Management and Ranch Management Internship

Each student enrolled in the Farm Management or Ranch Management program will complete a yearlong internship series. Students will be keeping financial, inventory, and production records for an average sized farm or ranch like their family operation. Costs such as repairs, supplies, labor, utilities, fuel, license fees, and professional fees will be provided by the instructor monthly. To make the farm or ranch like their own, students will have a farm or ranch that raises the same crops and livestock as their home farm. They will be learning their own costs like seed, feed, fertilizer, chemicals, land rent, and real estate taxes. Their production will be equal to their per acre production at home and sales will be at prices received at home. Each student will begin with the same balance sheet with a given amount of inventory to sell, a set amount of equipment and land, several loans for operating, machinery, livestock, and land. Decisions made by the internship class will include making any capital sales or any new capital purchases.

The internship begins in the Spring semester of the students first year and continues through the Spring semester of their second year. This includes a summer internship that consists of continued record keeping and data collection that is completed at the students’ summer location. During their final semester students will complete a financial analysis of their farm and then divide their farm into smaller enterprises (corn, wheat, cow-calf, etc.) to analyze these smaller segments. Students will then compare their own farms and own enterprises to the entire student group and to data published by the Adult Farm Management programs in their respective locations.

Placement Internship Program

Students enrolled in the Agronomy, Ag Business, Animal Science and Precision Ag curriculums will participate in a 400-hour paid internship. This placement internship is designed to strengthen knowledge, skills and understanding of the student’s career interest and typically happens between their first and second year. The internship experience begins with the Internship Orientation courses taken during their first year. These courses are designed to help students understand the opportunities that are available in the Agriculture industry, develop job search skills, help them find their internship and help to prepare them for a successful internship opportunity. Many students come to NDSCS with an idea where they would like to complete their internship while others need help from instructors to find those opportunities. There are many pathways to securing the internship. Placement sites include agriculture retailers, ag consulting companies, elevators, and other similar type businesses.