A family walking in a green field toward a farm

Farm Operation

Technical Diploma | Financial Aid-Eligible

27 Credits | 1 Year

Ashland*, New Richmond*, Rice Lake*, Superior*

Outreach Center: Balsam Lake*

*Combination of Hybrid and On Site instruction

Career Cluster: Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources

No matter the size of the farm, there is always something new in agriculture. Students in this program will learn about new technology in the classroom and how that can be applied to their operation in the on-farm component. This program has something for everyone who is interested in production agriculture.  


Program Overview

The Farm Operation program includes courses in livestock management and nutrition, crop and soil management,        commodities and marketing, emerging trends in agriculture and farm records and analysis. This program is designed to give students the critical thinking skills necessary for profitable decision making. The Farm Operation Technical Diploma will give you both classroom and in the field instruction.

Program Outcomes

Farm Operation graduates will be able to:

  • Utilize agronomic resources for optimal farm production
  • Evaluate livestock management plans
  • Plan for operation and maintenance of farm facilities and equipment
  • Create a farm business plan
  • Apply marketing principles to agricultural enterprises
Students in lab observe instructor demonstrate techniques on calf mannequin

The instructors in this program sift through the present research and bring information that can be directly applied to your farm. The classroom setting has an environment of camaraderie that encourages students to share their experiences with different management practices, seed varieties and feeding trials.  

Students looking at different feed samples

Share ideas and network with fellow farmers. 

Farm equipment in a field from an aerial viewpoint

Practical, on-farm application. 

A student analyzing the reproductive parts on a cow simulator

Practice hands-on skills.  


Farm Operation courses are offered in a hybrid setting. This allows you to enjoy the freedom of taking classes through the internet live from anywhere.

  • Connect with your instructor and classmates during live classes via the web.
  • There will be occasional hands-on learning experiences held on-campus and at a farm site throughout the year.
  • Additional travel may be required for On the Farm 1 and On the Farm 2.

Credential Opportunities

Short-term pathway certificates are available if you wish to ladder your progress through the program within your own timeline rather than through a nine-month school calendar. Pathway certificates in Crop Production, Livestock Production and Agricultural Business Fundamentals. 

Practical & Applicable Lessons

Learn how to improve quality of life, strengthen farm profitability or streamline management. What you learn, will be directly applied to your farm or your agribusiness.

Continuing Education

Evening course will be available for individuals needing to complete continuing education requirements for FSA loans.

Required Courses

The Farm Operation program covers topics in agronomy, livestock management, business marketing, and record-keeping with the opportunity of gaining work experience in the industry.

Explore the Required Courses

Featured Farm Operation Courses

| 3 CR
The Livestock Nutrition course will instruct the student in the following areas: anatomy and physiology of livestock; nutrient requirements for calves, heifers, and cows; ration balancing for calves, heifers, lactating cows, and dry cows; determine livestock feed needs; evaluate by-product feeds and feed additives; low input livestock feeding; metabolic disorders; and current issues in agriculture. Individualized instruction will be held at the student's on-the-job work location. The class also involves credit for on-the-job experience.
| 3 CR
This course will help the student learn many items involved with running a modern farm. These skills include but are not limited to record keeping, selecting proper insurance for the farm, analyzing financial performance, identifying credit needs and sources, planning for crops, and planning for the feeding of livestock.
| 3 CR
Soil Management is important to the productivity and profitability of a farmer. The farmer is a steward of the land and an environmentalist. The farmer must take care of the soil or he will not be a farmer for long! The student in this class will learn how to prepare a land use plan, collect and interpret soil samples results, develop a plan for fertilizer use on crops, develop a plan for storage and use of manure, analyze new farm issues and practices to determine future use, evaluate tillage equipment and methods, and to practice farm and environmental safety.

Farm Operation

As a Farm Operation student at Northwood Tech, you can earn credentials each step of the way! 

You can take this first and get a credential.

This is the program you're looking at.

Technical Diploma
27 Credits / 1 Year
Potential Careers
CSA Owner, Organic Farmer, Farm Owner, Farm Manager/Operator, Farm/Field Crop Manager, Livestock Farmer, Breeder, Farm Worker, Dairy Laborer, Dairy Herdsperson
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Continue your education to earn a bachelor's degree.




Admissions and Tuition

Northwood Tech has an easy admission process that can be completed in one visit. Please see the details under the "Requirements and Application" section to get started.

Requirements and Application

Tuition and Fees

Northwood Tech breaks down the cost of education, so you'll have a good idea of how much your education will cost.

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Cost of Attendance

The Cost of Attendance (COA) is an estimate of the costs that you may incur while attending Northwood Technical College.

Learn More About Cost of Attendance

Estimated Total Program Tuition 2024-25*

Farm Operation

27 Credits | 1 Year


*Tuition is an estimate and does not include any miscellaneous fees for various courses, tools, books, supplies or uniforms. Program book costs are in addition to tuition and fees and vary depending on course selection and where the books are purchased or rented. 

After the Northwood Tech Farm Operation Program

Upon completion of the program, you will earn certificates in Crop Production, Livestock Production and Agricultural Business Fundamentals and a technical diploma in Farm Operation. 

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Transfer Center

Transfer your Northwood Tech credits to a four-year college to earn your bachelor's degree and beyond. 

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Career Outlooks

Northwood Tech's graduates experience success. Learn more about the types of careers you can get after graduation.

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New Richmond Admissions Contact

Sherry Rehnelt

Admissions Advisor



Superior Admissions Contact

Anna Kalin

Admissions Advisor



Rice Lake Admissions Contact

Nicole Messicci

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Ashland Admissions Contact

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