Someone needs to make the case for agriculture in the 21st century—and that person could be you. As a communicator, or as an active community leader you have the opportunity to shape the future of agriculture when you major in Community Communications and Leadership Development.

It’s a mouthful of a program name, but it opens a world of opportunities. This interdisciplinary major has two options and countless opportunities for you. If you have strong communications and interpersonal skills, if you enjoy teaching and sharing your knowledge with others, if you want to make a difference by changing the social, political, and economic environment of your community or organization, then this is your major.


Agricultural Communications

Forget the jokes about talking to cows. What ag communicators really do is tell the story of agriculture—in words and images, in print and broadcast media, at county fair displays and on the World Wide Web. This major is for students who blend a talent for journalism, communications, or public relations with an interest in agriculture. If you want to have the skills of an agriculturist and the competency of a professional communicator, if you want to work with commodity groups or specialized agricultural media or in a rural location, then sign on the dotted line.

Public Service and Leadership

You want to make sure the rural lifestyle doesn’t disappear from the landscape. You want to help tomorrow’s communities, organizations, businesses, and social service agencies face the challenges of this new century. So choose a major that will help you understand the forces of change and give you the organizational and interpersonal skills to lead these groups.

Your College Courses

The two options share a common core of courses that provide a foundation in the science of agriculture as well as the skills and concepts of the social sciences and communications. From there you will focus on your specific area of emphasis: agricultural communications or public service and leadership.

Each option offers you choices. Working closely with your faculty advisor, you will shape your undergraduate degree program to match your interests and career goals.

Learn new ways of thinking about contemporary rural life and the agricultural industry!

Majoring in Public Service and Leadership enables me to choose from a broad range of classes, from political science to sociology to all phases of agriculture. This major will prepare me to pursue a career in a variety of fields. The College of Agriculture is staffed by friendly, caring people—just like back home.
Lee Wilson, Public Service and Leadership

Agricultural Communications gave me the knowledge and skills in both fields—agriculture as well as communications—that are important in my present job. It’s a unique combination that I couldn’t have found anywhere else at UK. And I was helped by teachers who took a genuine interest in my progress and education. In fact, we’re still in touch.
Kathy Reding, Agricultural Communications Press Secretary, Congressman Ron Lewis

Public Service and Leadership was the perfect option for me. Thanks to the program’s flexibility I served as an aide to Governor Paul Patton while completing my degree. And the skills I learned at UK are helping my plans to enter public and community service more directly fall into place.
Adam Edelen, Public Service and Leadership, Vice President Operations, Greater Lexington Chamber of Commerce

Potential Career Pathways

  • Lawyer*
    2016 Median Salary: $118,160 per year
    Job Outlook: 6%
  • Fundraiser
    2016 Median Salary: $54,130 per year
    Job Outlook: 9% (faster than average growth)

Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics 
*Post-graduate work required

Student Groups Associated with this Program

Our college supports dozens of organizations to help students apply their learning outside the classroom and gain valuable work and leadership experience.  To learn more about the organizations listed below, click here.

Pre-Professional Tracks

The College of Agriculture, Food and Environment has specialized advising services for students planning to attend professional school (Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Law, etc.).  

In addition to helping students fulfill foundational coursework, the college's pre-professional advisor also helps student secure relevant experience such as internships, volunteer opportunities, and job shadowing positions. 

For more information on the college's pre-professional advising, click here.