OGLESBY – Illinois Valley Community College’s annual Agriculture Spring Open House on April 5 attracted about 25 prospective students who met with current students and heard from a program alumnus.
Students from Fieldcrest, LaMoille and Putnam County high schools heard from one of the leaders of IVCC’s first class, Trent Porter of Ottawa, now a junior at Western Illinois University.
Porter, IVCC’s first ag club president who also played baseball for the Eagles, is a member of the finance committee for Alpha Gamma Rho, WIU’s ag fraternity.
“After two years in IVCC’s program, I was well prepared for my classes at Western,” he told the students. Porter said he has secured employment with Grainco FS of Serena this summer.
The visitors met three of IVCC’s six ag instructors: Willard Mott, Doug Stockley and Gagan Sidhu.
Mott, the full-time program coordinator and instructor, said 10 percent of all jobs in the La Salle, Bureau and Putnam county region are ag-related. Nationally, employment opportunities in food, agriculture, renewable resources and environment are expected to increase by nearly 58,000 jobs per year through 2020.
In three years, IVCC’s ag program has grown to 17 ag classes, three degrees and more than $44,000 in ag-restricted scholarships. Program facilities include a 150-acre college farm, a soils and crops wet lab, ag mechanics lab and greenhouse.
For information, contact Mott at (815) 224-0413 or [email protected]