Illinois Central College Agriculture Department is partnering with United Soils and I.F.A.R.M. through USI Smart, to provide hands on training in precision agriculture technologies. United Soils employees are working with ICC students in their “Agriculture Computers” and “Soil Fertility” classes to demonstrate the skills needed to enter the precision agricultural work place and give the students an opportunity to practice using the I.F.A.R.M. precision ag software.
Each semester, Illinois Central College students sample the soils in the fields of the ICC Demonstration and Research Farm in East Peoria, Illinois. With the help of United Soils Inc. staff, soil fertility students conduct grid soil sampling following industry standard procedures, using GPS/GIS technology equipped sample collection equipment, and gather geo-referenced sample locations corresponding to each soil sample. These soil samples are analyzed by United Soils and the soil test results are used by the ICC students to gain real world experience with nutrient and fertilizer management planning.
As part of this partnership, Illinois Central College has access to the I.F.A.R.M. program. This program allows the students to utilize geo-referenced soil test data collected at ICC Demonstration and Research Farm to be used in their “agriculture computers” course. Students use I.F.A.R.M. as a resource to map fields, store information, analyze soil and yield data, and create fertilizer recommendations. This is an opportunity for students to apply agronomic knowledge to real world scenarios, be introduced to Precision Agriculture farm and data management software (I.F.A.R.M.), and to learn how to evaluate and make nutrient management plans and decisions from a “real world” agronomic perspective.
Students; who have worked with the USI Smart program, are better equipped to enter the workplace as farmers, consultants, farm managers, fertilizer specialists and agronomic professionals.
To learn more about the partnership between USI Smart and Illinois Central College, please email USI Smart
These photos are from various events our staff has attended.