CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — There is a lot of agriculture going on at Parkland College, and Charlie Mitsdarfer is putting all on display Thursday.


Charlie Mitsdarfer: We’ve got our Ag Tech Showcase coming up on Thursday the 10th. It’s kind of dual purpose; it’s kind of a career fair for current students that we have and also an open house for potential students. So we’ll have employers coming in, some of them looking for internship hires, some of them looking for full time employment. They are going to be looking at everybody that is going to attend. They are interested in our graduating students and also our current and upcoming students.

Stu Ellis: So students who are in vo-ag classes now in high school, they’ll see what you’ve got and the programs they can learn. What sort of programs do you have? Any new focus areas?

Charlie Mitsdarfer: We’ve got our traditional ag business; that’s kind of our foundational, a lot of agronomy and ag business, a good, well rounded ag degree. We have transfer programs to get you to a four-year school. We also have horticulture, and we also have our advanced applicator program, that’s our newest program. And that kind of ties right in, we also have precision agriculture. So those kind of share a lot of the same course-load and they start getting more specialized.

Stu Ellis: Students are interested in precision agriculture.

Charlie Mitsdarfer: Yes, that is very popular. And why not, right? It’s how things are going. It’s fun. You get to play with new gadgets and toys. We’ve got drones, we’ve got this planter back here behind us. We strip it down to the tool bar and rebuild it every year with the latest and greatest hardware components. It’s really cutting-edge, all the stuff we have on there.

Stu Ellis: All this is coming up Thursday, and they need to register by Tuesday?

Charlie Mitsdarfer: Register by Tuesday would be great. Trying to get a headcount.

Stu Ellis: We appreciate Charlie hosting us here.