Horticulture Technology

Horticulture Technology

Career Opportunities
Your career opportunities include working for plant nurseries and garden centers, as well as grounds maintenance, landscape or turf management companies. In addition, our graduates frequently open their own businesses. The region’s leading employers are seeking out our graduates!
Average Salary
The median annual wage for career opportunities for graduates of similar programs, according to the US Department of Labor and Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Award Types: AAS Degree
Total Credit Required to Graduate: 69 (AAS)

Have you always had a green thumb and love to work outdoors? At Southeast Tech, get to where you want to be in just two years with a Horticulture Technology degree. Horticulture professionals cultivate ornamental plants, fruits and vegetables, as well as nursery stock for nurseries and garden centers. You’ll learn garden center management, greenhouse operations, plant identification including trees, shrubs, annuals and perennials; work with soils and fertilizers, pest management, plant propagation, landscape design basics, arboriculture and interiorscaping.

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This degree is a Bring Your Own Laptop (BYOL) program, meaning you can purchase a laptop on your own or from the Southeast Tech Support Center.



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Award Types: AAS Degree
Total Credit Required to Graduate: 69 (AAS)


Ginger McNickle
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Ginger joined Southeast Tech in the summer of 2015, with more than a decade of experience in the horticulture field.

After earning her A.S. degree in horticulture from Northeast Community College in Norfolk, NE, she continued her education earning a B.S. degree in Horticulture Production from South Dakota State University. This allowed her to focus on specific areas like; fruits, vegetable, ornamental and turf plants. She is currently in the process of earning her M.S. degree from South Dakota State University in Plant Science with an emphasis in Entomology.

In addition, she has also worked with various production systems like greenhouse, nursery, and food crops, as well as traditional and organic management practices. As a graduate student at SDSU, she worked with insect pests and pest management strategies, focusing primary on insect biological control of pest populations in agriculture crops.

Ginger shares, “My education has provided me a strong knowledge base as well as giving me the ability to utilize resources to find any information needed. I was a teacher’s assistant for two years in the horticulture department, where I helped set up and organize lectures and labs, as well as lead several of them. I’m familiar with modern classroom set up and computer programs and am excited to work with and inspire students at Southeast Tech.”

Ginger has worked in a variety of horticulture jobs; floral shops, greenhouses, garden centers, public gardens, seed production and seed testing. She feels the most fulfilling part of any jobs is being able to use her education and experience to help someone with their horticulture needs such as; landscaping, plant selection, and pest problems.

Her green passions include:
• Fruit and Vegetable production
• Food Safety
• Customer Support Agriculture (CSA) and Farmers markets
• Integrated Pest Management
• Biological Pest Control using insects
• Container and Vertical gardening
• Organic food production systems

Education: B.S., South Dakota State University; A.S., Northeast Community College; South Dakota Dept. of Agriculture- commercial applicator license- current; Certified Viability Technologist (CVT)-Society Commercial Seed Technologists -2014; Federal Seed School- purity and seed identification -2014; International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) Certified Seed Sampler -2013; Global G.A.P. IFA/PSS v4 Fruit and Vegetable Training 2015; Auditor training (ISO 9001:2008)- 2014, 2015; 9001:2008 Standards, Internal Auditor and 3rd party Lead Auditor training; HACCP, Principles for Fresh Produce Industries- 2015
Stacy Hotchkin
Lab Specialist
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Stacy has worked as a Lab Assistant in the Horticulture Division at Southeast Tech for 23 years. In addition, she has owned and operated Dakota Lawn & Landscape Service, providing full-service lawn and landscape services as well as snow removal, since 1983 with her husband Dale.

According to Stacy, "I enjoy seeing our students graduate and put what they learn into their career. I like to stay in touch and keep up with them."

Her newest green adventure includes working with square foot gardening, which maximizes space in a small area.

Stacy's hobbies include gardening, camping and spending time at the lake with her husband and two daughters as well as baking.

Education: AAS Degree, Southeast Tech; Certified SD Nursery Professional; Licensed SD Chemical Applicator





Student Work