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Teach Ag South Dakota

Become an Agricultural Educator

Pathway Document

There are many ways to become an agriculture teacher in South Dakota. Click on the pathway document to explore the various pathways to this rewarding career!

Step 1: Explore the Profession

Teaching agriculture in South Dakota is a great career! There are two ways to enter the classroom: traditional and alternative certification. Traditional certification means you have completed a teacher education program. South Dakota State University is home to the state's only agricultural education certification program. Alternative certification is for people who already have a college degree and are looking to move into the middle/high school classroom. Please contact Dr. Laura Hasselquist (laura.hasselquist@sdstate.edu) for more
details about both pathways.

Step 2: Get a Degree

On average, a bachelor's of science in agriculture with a teaching certificate takes four years to complete. Students will start with early field experience during the fall semester of their sophomore year. Getting them out in the classrooms early helps them decide if agricultural education is the right fit for them. Student take general education classes, technical agriculture classes, and specialized teacher education and agricultural education classes.

There is one institution where you can earn your agricultural education degree in South Dakota - South Dakota State University.Click the icon below to learn more about getting your degree in agricultural education at SDSU.

Step 3: Student Teaching

We work to place student teachers in a geographic area of their choice with a program that will help them reach their professional goals. For example, if a student wants more experience with Agriscience Fair, we will work to find them a placement that excels in that area. Student teaching happens for 13 weeks. During that time students are expected to teach full days for at least two weeks. Student teachers also attend all school and FFA events (CDEs, LDEs, Parent/Teacher Conferences, etc.) that their cooperating teacher does.

Step 4: Get a Job

People interested in teaching in SD can set up an account with Associated School Boards of South Dakota (https://teacher.asbsd.org/Home/Login) and sign up to receive alerts when an agriculture position is posted.

What's It Like to Teach Agriculture?

Agriculture is the number one industry in the state of SD. Many communities large and small take pride in production agriculture.
There is statewide support for all ag programs and the state is adding several new programs a year.

From Teachers:

"I love that I can share my passion for agriculture with students and that every day is not the same. I love the light bulb moments my students have when they see how they are impacted by agriculture and when they see their place in it."
-Andrew Jensen, Sioux Falls CTE Academy Agriculture Teacher

"Ag teaching in South Dakota, right in the middle of America's farm and ranch lands, is a very rewarding experience. We are close to so many opportunities and industry partnerships within the production agriculture world. Students here understand and value agriculture and natural resources here because it is the life we live every day. I know that I am making a difference with what I teach each day."
-Brady Duxbury, Wessington Springs Agriculture Teacher

From Students:

"I chose to become an agriculture teacher because I want to educate others on why agriculture is an important element in our society, and all the benefits that come from it."
- Brooke Moorse, SDSU Agriculture Education Student.

Many programs teach a variety of classes
On average, 1 or 2 programs are added each year.
supportive colleagues

Resources & Links

Alternative Certification in South Dakota

Do you already have a degree and/or experience in another area and want to teach agriculture in South Dakota?

Contact Laura Hasselquist, Agricultural Education Professor at South Dakota State University.

Resources for Current Agriculture Teachers

Professional Development

  • SDACTE & SDAAE summer conference
  • SDAAE Midwinter Professional Development Conferences

Contact Us

Laura Hasselquist
(605) 688-4545