Plant Scientist / Field Agronomist

Plant Scientist / Field Agronomist

Plant scientists, alternatively called field agronomists, plan, budget, establish, preform and document research trials and projects as they relate to agronomic crops. They evaluate products, collect data on performance in different locations and make recommendations to management on new releases. Additionally, they position hybrids in their most favorable environment.
What Responsibilities Will I Have?: 
  • Make agronomic-related decisions regarding production activities
  • Develop, conduct and evaluate tolerance for species at seedling stage of growth
  • Understand the farmland (ground conditions, farming challenges and pest issues)
  • Evaluate products, collect data and make recommendations to management
  • Relay agronomy information to key accounts
  • Communicate with relevant sectors to initiate research projects
  • Investigate applying a wide variety of scientific principles to potential inventions
  • Prepare documented proposals and successfully establish research trials
  • Manage trial establishment and collection of data
  • Budget for research work and provide management reporting 
Recommended High School Courses: 
The following high school courses are recommended: agricultural education, a focus on science such as earth science, biology, botany, chemistry and biology, and mathematics.
Education/Training Required: 
A master’s degree or Ph.D. in plant breeding, biotechnology, plant pathology, agronomy, crop science, soil science, biology or a related field is preferred to become a plant scientist/field agronomist. A bachelor’s degree in similar fields may be considered with some companies.
Future Job Market Outlook: 
Typical Employers: 
Typically employed by seed companies, crop protection companies, research firms, governmental organizations, environmental organizations and colleges or universities.
Suggested Professional Organizations and Associations: 
  • Soil Science Society of America
  • National Alliance of Independent Crop Consultants
  • American Society of Agronomy
  • Committee for Sustainable Agriculture
  • Crop Science Society of America
  • Weed Science Society of America
  • American Society of Plant Biologist 
Average Annual Full-Time Salary: 
$74,004
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Salary data is provided by the AgCareers.com Compensation Benchmark Review™. These salaries should be considered as examples and are provided for educational and exploratory purposes. The salary information provided should not be used as a benchmark. Actual salaries are influenced by numerous variables including but not limited to demographics, size and scope of the role, level of experience, qualifications, and education of the worker.