A national study of 70 land-grant universities found that undergraduate women enrolled in agriculture programs outnumber undergraduate men by more than 2,900 students. This study, conducted by the Food and Agricultural Education Information System, explored trends in the gender of undergraduate students enrolled in 14 agriculture academic areas at land-grant institutions from 2004 to 2011.
The rise in undergraduate women in agriculture academic areas is a relatively recent phenomenon. In 2004, undergraduate men outnumbered undergraduate women by more than 1,400 students. By 2008, the number of undergraduate women and undergraduate men enrolled in agriculture academic areas were roughly equivalent.
In 2009, undergraduate women outpaced undergraduate men by 249 students. This trend continued for 2010 and 2011 with enrollment numbers for undergraduate women increasing each year. In 2011, the undergraduate women enrolled in agriculture academic areas exceeded the number of undergraduate men enrolled by more than 2,900 students.
This trend corresponds with an overall rise in women farm operators. According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, the number of women farm operators increased nationally by 19 percent – to 1,008,943 – between 2002 and 2007.
Source: Lisa Hightower, Food and Agricultural Education System