The Dakota Precision Ag Center (DPAC) has been awarded two grants totaling $3.28 million for the development of training programs in precision agriculture. DPAC will develop the programs to help fill in-demand jobs requiring high skill level in precision ag technologies and enhance current workplace training at North Dakota agribusinesses and implement dealers.
Precision ag includes remote sensing or GPS; soil and grid sampling; and information management tools.
Currently nationwide there are 8,000 unfilled positions requiring knowledge in precision ag but not enough people with the right skill sets to fill those openings.
One of the grants comes from the U.S. Department of Labor. The grant’s $2.99 million will fund training to recent veterans or workers who are currently unemployed due to foreign trade. DPAC plans to provide training through this program from Minnesota to Wyoming.
The North Dakota Department of Commerce’s grant for $288,600 will provide additional education for workers already employed in agriculture.