Journal of Research in Technical Careers


agriculture, student, recruitment, degree, decision


Agricultural Education | Agricultural Science


Currently, the agricultural industry struggles to fill positions with qualified agricultural workers. Therefore, it is critical to attract high caliber individuals to agricultural degree programs that are prepared to enter the workforce with the skills needed to navigate complex issues and problems. The purpose of this national study was to identify key factors that influence the recruitment of agriculture students at land-grant and non-land-grant universities. Using Chapman’s model of student success as our conceptual lens, we tested 66 factors identified in the literature as successful recruitment strategies for colleges of agriculture based on students’ personal characteristics as well as key external influences. We discovered statistically significant (p < .05) differences existed based on students’ gender and race/ethnicity. To better operationalize the findings from this study for U.S. colleges of agriculture, we developed the agricultural student recruitment model (ASRM). The model visually represents the distinct but intersecting factors that most profoundly influence students’ academic degree decisions. Moving forward, we recommend colleges of agriculture use the ASRM as a tool to better resonate with populations that may lack representation in their degree programs and the state’s agricultural industry.