Click on the application page for a form that you can submit electronically. This will automatically send your application to Dr. Doug Bailey, who oversees the certificate program.
What enrollment status must I have to earn a certificate?
The organic certificate program is open to all undergraduate and graduate students at UGA, as well as individuals who wish to enroll at UGA as post-baccalaureate students and pursue the certificate separate from a degree We have designed the program in such a way that every student can tailor their program of study according to her/his specific interests.
What does it mean to be ‘Certified Organic?’
According to the USDA, “before a product can be labeled ‘organic,’ a Government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer is following all the rules necessary to meet USDA organic standards. Companies that handle or process organic food before it gets to your local supermarket or restaurant must be certified as well. Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. (USDA website: http://www.ams.usda.gov/publications/content/about-national-organic-program)
Why should I earn a certificate in Organic Agriculture?
Organic agriculture is growing at a rate of 20% per year according to the USDA. Students who have experience in organic agriculture are in high demand. Having a certificate in organic agriculture may help you in the future by giving you an edge over other candidates in a competitive job market, and should enhance your skills in production of food grown with organic principles, whether certified or not.
Where are the hands-on portion of classes taught?
Most of the field experience you’ll receive in the classroom portion of the certificate program will be done at UGArden on South Milledge Avenue (www.ugarden.uga.edu) with some classes meeting at the certified organic porton of the department’s farm south of Athens on highway 441 (http://www.hort.uga.edu/farm/).
Who do I contact for more information?
For general information about the program, please look at the website, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact the program coordinator, Doug Bailey at email@example.com.
What are the requirements to get the certificate in organic agriculture?
Every student needs to take four core courses:
HORT 3300 Organic Gardening
HORT 4125 Organic Agricultural Systems
AESC 4095 Undergraduate Research in Organic Agriculture or AESC 4950 Undergraduate Internship in Organic Agriculture (either course usually completed after HORT 3300 and 4125)
HORT 4096 Organic Agriculture Seminar (to be completed after AESC 4095 or AESC 4950)
If I already have an undergraduate degree, can I come to UGA just to get the Certificate?
Yes. You need to enroll at UGA as a post-baccalaureate student and once accepted will receive the Certificate in Organic Agriculture upon completion of the certificate requirements.
If I do not have an undergraduate degree can I enroll in the organic certificate program?
Contact the program director (firstname.lastname@example.org) to answer this question. There may be special circumstances that would allow an individual to pursue the organic certificate without an undergraduate degree.
I am a graduate student at UGA. Can I join the certificate program?
Graduate students may earn a certificate in organic agriculture with permission of their major professor. HORT 4125 may be taken for graduate credit (6125) as can several of the elective courses. HORT 3300 and HORT 4096 are only available as undergraduate courses.