A recent ranking of the Top Agricultural Universities in the World put the University of Massachusetts at number 10 in the United States (and 11 in the world), according to the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings. UMass was the only ag school in New England to make the top 50 and second behind Cornell for best in the East.
“We were delighted of course,” says Stockbridge School of Agriculture Director, Dr. Wesley Autio, when asked about the “meteoric” jump in ranking.
The rankings are based on reputation among other university faculty and employers, and research productivity. Being placed among the list of “best Ag schools” is an certainly an honor. Autio continued; “of course, we think the nearly 150 year-old University of Massachusetts has always been among the ‘go to’ schools for excellent undergraduate education, but it is nice to get this recognition.”
The University of California at Davis and Cornell are perennially ranked number one and two on this annual list. The research budgets and industry grants of these large institutions far surpass UMass. The rankings indicate that “reputation among other university colleagues in agriculture” put UMass in the top 10.
The Stockbridge School of Agriculture offers 8 Associate of Sciences degrees and 4 Bachelor of Sciences degrees, as well as opportunities for students to work toward graduate degrees in agriculture and related fields. The Sustainable Food and Farming Program, which allows students to concentrate on farming and marketing, agricultural education and public policy has grown from just 5 students in 2003 to 100 today. Other Associate and Bachelor programs focus on all aspects of agricultural science, important in a rapidly changing world.
Here is the ranking of U.S. agriculture and forestry universities in 2014:
- University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Iowa State University
- University of California-Berkeley
- Oregon State University
- Purdue University
- Texas A&M
- Ohio State University
- University of Massachusetts
For the top 50 Agriculture and Forestry Program, see “rankings 2014.”
Autio believes that the international recognition of the Stockbridge School is long overdue and that “programs such as our herbal medicine program, the Student Farm, our draft horse classes, and our Permaculture Initiative for example, have really put us on the map.” Students are encouraged to get involved in real-world applications of their course work. Autio says, “we offer both a solid Bachelor of Sciences degree as well as lots of opportunities to gain practical experience in preparation for exciting and satisfying careers.” He concludes “our alums will certainly tell you that Stockbridge is among the top agricultural programs in the world.”
Information on the food and farming degree program is available on the UMass Stockbridge School of Agriculture web site: https://stockbridge.cns.umass.edu/SFF-BS.
Dr. Wesley Autio, Director