Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Career and Technology Education (MCTE)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Career, Technology and Leadership Edu.

First Advisor

Dr. Stacy Vincent


Today there is an increased demand for secondary agriculture education programs to prepare students to be college and career ready through a program of study. The purpose of this study was to identify risk and protective factors of preparatory and non-preparatory students within an agriculture education program at Anderson County High School in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. The results of this study did not determine that there was a difference in risk and protective factors between preparatory and non-preparatory students within agriculture education courses. The study concluded that students among both categories were equally exposed to risks such as family conflict and peers that abused alcohol and/or drugs. The study also concluded that both preparatory and non-preparatory students could benefit from increased protective factors such as understanding the relevance of coursework within agriculture education courses, increased parent involvement in schoolwork, and having contact with peers who are involved in CTSO’s such as the FFA. It is recommended that agriculture education researchers at post-secondary institutions conduct further research on retention within career pathways from various theoretical frameworks.