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Program Overview

The Master of Professional Studies (MPS) in Agriculture and Life Sciences focus area in Animal Nutrition is designed for individuals who are interested in developing careers emphasizing the nutritional needs of animals. Ideal for those who want to work in industry or the non-profit sector, this focus area covers a wide range of areas including: the foundational knowledge of nutrition, feed ingredients and processing, methods of estimating and expressing feed requirements, principles of diet formulation across multiple animal species, and formulation of a sound diet with a given commercial formulation program. 

Students in the MPS program are prepared to meet industry needs through relevant coursework and development of technical nutrition skills. With access to world-renowned faculty, cutting edge techniques, laboratories and additional coursework in strategic thinking, communications and leadership, statistics and data analytics, students expand their knowledge and develop their skills for today’s data-informed workplace.

The skillset developed in the MPS program can be applied to numerous emerging applications and careers, such as:

  • Technical Sales Specialist
  • Sales Manager
  • Program or Production Manager
  • Research Farm Manager
  • Nutrition Manager 
  • Agribusiness Nutrition Specialist
  • Product Manager, e.g., for Feed Manufacturer

The MPS is a New York State accredited, one-year, course-based master’s degree program located in Cornell University’s Ithaca, NY campus. The specialized, course-based instruction broadens expertise and expands versatility and has two main components:

  1. Coursework: Students work with a faculty advisor to customize their course of study based on their area(s) of interest.  While the majority of the courses (20 of the required 30 credits) will be in CALS, students have the flexibility to take electives across Cornell.
  2. Capstone project: With the guidance of a faculty advisor, students work on solving a real-world problem, building project management and team leadership skills sought by employers.

MPS students are part of a cohort of CALS professional master’s students specializing in diverse fields of study. The program is fast-paced and rigorous. Professional master’s students have a dedicated support organization, offering career guidance and professional skill development.

Sample Curriculum

Working with a faculty advisor, students design a curriculum based on interests and career goals.

Fall semester

  • ANSC 4880: The Global Food, Energy, and Water Nexus
  • ANSC 4940: Feed Ingredients and Principles of Diet Formulation: Horse, Poultry and Swine 
  • NCC 5540: Managing and Leading in Organizations
  • ALS 5900: Master of Professional Studies Project Development 
  • ANSC 6100: Animal Science MPS Seminar
  • BTRY 6010: Statistical methods 1

Spring semester

  • ANSC 4940: Application of Diet Formulation: Horse, Poultry and Swine 
  • ALS 5900/5910: MPS Capstone Project Development/Completion
  • ANSC 6100 Animal Science Seminar 
  • AEM 4015: Customer Analytics and Strategy 
  • NBA 5410: Project Management 
  • AEM 6395: Technology Strategy 

Option-specific core courses

Fall semester

  • ANSC 4110: Integrated Cattle Nutrition 
  • ANSC 4940: Nutrition of Felids and Canids 
  • NCC 5550: Financial Accounting

Spring semester

  • ANSC 3550: Dairy Cattle Nutrition
  • ANSC 3920: Mechanisms of Animal Growth and Development 
  • ANSC 4120: Whole-Farm Nutrient Management 
  • ANSC 4410: Nutritional Physiology and Biochemistry
  • STSCI 4140: Applied Design
  • ILROB 5275:  Leading and Managing Teams
  • NBA 5140: Ethics and Corporate Culture 

Admission Requirements  

The ideal candidate will demonstrate a passion for working with animals, competency in undergraduate science coursework, and interest in applying knowledge gained in a professional career. Admission requirements include:

  • Complete an application through Cornell Graduate School
  • Bachelor’s degree in scientific field, such as animal science, microbiology, chemistry, biology, nutrition
  • For non-science background, at least 15 credits of introductory college-level science courses, including general chemistry, general biology, and corresponding labs
  • Current résumé
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • TOEFL/IELTS for international applicants, per Graduate School guidelines

For More Information 

calsprofprograms [at] (subject: More%20information%20about%20Animal%20Health%20specialization%20admissions) (Connect with us to discuss the admissions process)