An agricultural engineer makes use of certain principles of mathematics as well as science in order to find reasonable solutions to their irrigation problems. It is also the duty of an agricultural engineer to research and design new agricultural products and supervises the quality of present ones. The products are mainly meant for mechanizing agricultural process. He finds the reasons if any product fails to bring results. These engineers have a thorough knowledge in computers, which they employ in order to check the quality of the designed products. He calculates the cost as well as the time involved in completing a particular project. They find out different methods for water and soil conservation. They monitor, observe, and solve problems pertaining to dairy, food processing, irrigation, drainage, and flood and water control systems. They work in production, management, sales, and research and development departments.
These engineers work in industrial plants, laboratories, or offices. Some also spend most of their time outside at the construction site and even at production sites. Many agricultural engineers also travel widely when their work demands. An agriculture engineer has to clock in forty hours a week. Sometimes due to heavy work pressure, engineers may be compelled to work for extra hours. This can be when the work that is to be finished in the given time is complicated or any unanticipated problem crops up.
You can be an agricultural engineer at the craft or technician level after undergoing an apprenticeship or certificate program such as a National Diploma in Agricultural Engineering. You will be given on the job training to reach a higher level. Another route is to take a degree in Agricultural Engineering or a related subject such as environmental, mechanical, or automotive engineering. You need a minimum of two A levels/four H grades or the equivalent to join the degree classes. Subjects like Maths, Engineering science, Physics, plus five GCSEs/S grades (A-C/1-3) are also necessary at the high school level.
In a career like this, you will learn a lot as you join work. However, in reputed firms employers may offer a structured training scheme, allowing you to gain experience in different departments. You can also register with various engineering societies to hone your skills. Moreover qualifications leading to high levels are widely available and sometimes your employers will back you financially to avail them. The training courses in Agricultural Engineering are pertaining to the installation of machinery, management training, and know-how of new equipment, new technology, and products.
As an agricultural engineer, you need to have an intense passion for the understanding of agriculture, horticulture, or forestry and the work process of these industries. You should have a very realistic and rational approach to problem solving. Adeptness in mathematics is mandatory. You should be capable of analyzing the problems clearly and then generate feasible solutions. In addition to your technical and engineering skills, you would need good communication skills to explain technical issues to the senior management, team members as well as people who are not technically well-updated.
The career scope of an agricultural engineer is very wide. After graduating with the required degree students are soon absorbed in various sectors. But prior experience or undergoing apprentice programs in the field will be useful. With experience one can be promoted to the position of a manager in an agriculture based company.
The salary of an agriculture engineer with 5 years of experience is $66,000 on the average. The salary depends on factors like location, experience, performance as well as academic qualification.
The field of agricultural engineering has a plethora of job opportunities. Whether you want to be in the industry in the government sector or take up the teaching profession, there are ample opportunities waiting for you. Moreover, if you are a nature lover, this profession will give you the range to be part of environment conservation programs. If you want to make it your career, it would definitely be a good choice.