Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources

About This Cluster

Regular Responsibilities
Prepare, implement and update strategic plans for agricultural economic development. Facilitate the development of solutions to the needs and concerns of agriculture including the shortage of trained, skilled labor and profitable markets for Ag products. Assist in the creation of an agricultural local development corporation. Work with public and private sector interests to provide coordination of resources for the Ag. industry. Maintain a complete knowledge and understanding of the interrelationships of resources for the Ag. industry. Help develop linkages with other nonagricultural industries. Work with natural resource agencies to provide for an assessment of natural resources in Jefferson County.
Agricultural Financing
Developing financial packages to help new agricultural ventures establish in Jefferson County including the development of feasibility studies and business plans. Attracting new investments in agriculture including agribusiness, production agriculture, and agri-tourism. Providing assistance to the Ag. industry with endeavors to diversify. Explore, evaluate and implement creative and innovative methods to maintain existing and new Ag. enterprises to help increase the value of the industry measured in total annual sales and increased retained earnings. Encouraging and helping Ag. entrepreneurs take advantage of funding resources available.
Agricultural Marketing
Identifying, developing and implementing promotion and marketing programs of Ag. products and opportunities, and the importance of the Ag. industry in Jefferson County. Explore and utilize leads and opportunities in marketing and funding agriculture in Jefferson County. Promote better brand recognition of Jefferson County agricultural products.
Education and Public Relations
Facilitate the development and implementation of programs training students in agricultural industries and careers. Assume role as a spokesperson for agriculture. Serve as ombudsman for the local Ag. industry. Support and serve as a resource to the County Ag. Farmland Protection Board.

Find out more about career paths in this cluster!

Want to work with ANIMALS? Check out some of the videos below to find out more about careers with animals!

Zookeeper Wildlife Technician Veterinarian

Women in Agriculture

There are a number of opportunities for women in agriculture – and many women go on to be advocates for agriculture and agricultural practices in our national government. Watch the Women in Agriculture Webinar hosted by the Jefferson County Agricultural Coordinator, Jay Matteson, where he interviews three phenomenal women on their involvement and careers in agriculture.

Skills and Interests

  1. Helpful Traits / Skills and Studies :
    • Knowledge of Northeastern and Eastern agriculture along with a background in economics and finance.
    • Craftsmanship, fund-raising, public speaking, and oral and written communication skills.
    • Proven leadership should be demonstrable
    • Person must have computer and Internet skills and have e-commerce knowledge.
    • Candidate must be sensitive to political environment.
    • The person must be a self-starter, energetic, and a visionary.
    • It is paramount that the candidate be a team player and responsive to the Ag. industry. The person must have a cheerful, friendly, empathetic but assertive, professional, business oriented personality.
The O*NET Interest Profiler can help you find out what your interests are and how they relate to the world of work.

Northern New York Community Foundation Scholarships

Applications for academic year 2021-2022 Freshman Scholarships 

Since 1980, the Northern New York Community Foundation has awarded more than $18 million in scholarships to students from Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

The Community Foundation annually awards scholarships to:

  • High school seniors for their freshman year in college or technical school. Full-time enrollment is required for a one-year award.
  • High school juniors in St. Lawrence County who will plan to pursue careers in STEM-related fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) are encouraged to apply for a one-year award.
  • Nontraditional students for any year of college or vocational, trade and technical school are also available. Part-time or full-time enrollment is required, and applicants must live in Jefferson, Lewis or St. Lawrence county. Applicants may reapply each year.

Scholarships, which can average up to $2,000, are available from three programs the Community Foundation administers:

  • Northern New York Community Foundation Scholarships — Awarded to students in liberal arts.
  • Herring College Memorial Scholarships — Awarded to students in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and related fields.
  • Visiting Nurse Association Scholarships — Awarded to students in nursing and health-related fields.

The Community Foundation also stewards more than 300 restricted scholarships through funds that individual donors have established.

Similar Clusters 

  • Like the Profession of Agricultural Educator (Check Out Education)
  • Like the Profession of Banker/Loan Officer and Field Representative for Bank, Insurance Company or Government Program  (Check Out Finance)
  • Like the Profession of Farm Investment Manager and Agricultural Commodity Broker (Check Out Finance)


Local High School Programs/Classes:  A excellent way to gain experience while in High School is through a variety of different classes such as: communications, business administration and finance, business math, agricultural science, science. Internships: Career and Technical Education Programs: Jefferson-Lewis-Hamilton-Herkimer-Oneida BOCES: St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES: Local College / University Majors: 
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Search colleges by location and interest here.


The National Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the mean hourly wage for a person in the Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources industry is $9.09 per hour and $18,910 annually. Wages are different for each of the different trades; in general, the more technical positions or positions that require more skills have higher wages.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics counted about 1.4 million jobs in the SOC occupations that are assigned to the agriculture, food, and natural resources cluster. Median annual wages for these occupations ranged from $18,710 for crop, nursery, and greenhouse farmworkers and laborers to $116,840 for natural science managers.

  • $34,250 – Animal Breeders
  • $25,860 – Agricultural Equipment Operators
  • $25,140 – Agricultural Workers
  • $22,060 – Farmworkers, farm ranch and other aqua cultural animals
  • Source: National Bureau of Labor Statistics

Additional Links

Extended Interviews

[GalleryBox id=”1817″]