Length of Program:  Certificate +1 YearProgram Intakes: Fall Intake (October program start)October 2020
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Horticulture Technologist Diploma

Applications Open: October

Length of Program: Two Years

Program Status: Open

Cultivate an exciting career in horticulture with the Horticulture Technologist diploma. This two-year program will provide you with a deep understanding of horticulture, including the production and management of plants, pests, landscapes, soils and water systems to achieve productive and sustainable systems.

Hone your skills through immersive hands-on learning accessing our unique campus that acts as a living lab, consisting of a 15 acre constructed wetland, botanic gardens, greenhouses and 12,000 square foot Landscape Pavilion. Learn how to design specialty landscapes, start a horticulture business and create an entrepreneurial approach to processing plants. You will also learn how to manage production of horticulture crops in response to market demands, as well as recognize the ecological, economic and social implications of horticulture decisions and processes.

Work-Integrated Learning: Students enrolled in the Horticulture Technologist diploma program will be required to participate in Field School, where students will work with a company earning a wage while putting their studies into practice.

Accreditation: Graduates are eligible to pursue certification through the Horticulture Certification Program by the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association.

Program Intakes: Fall Intake (September program start)

Applications Open: First Wednesday (9 a.m.) of October for the Fall Intake

Length of Program: Two Years

Method of Delivery: On-Campus

Credentials: Upon successful completion of this program, graduates will receive a diploma in Horticulture Technologist.

Apply Now!

  • "The program at Olds College tells you what you need to know and is a stepping stone to a successful horticulture career. It gave me the insight into the horticulture industry I needed to start planning my own business."
    • Tim Moreland, Class of 1998

Admission Requirements:

  • 50% or better in English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2
  • 50% or better in Math 20-1 or 20-2
  • 50% or better in two of Biology 20, Chemistry 20, Science 20, OR One of Biology 30, Chemistry 30, Science 30
  • Meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement

Academic Upgrading and High School Applicants: Applicants currently in high school or who are completing academic upgrading must submit proof of enrollment and any available interim/midterm marks. Final marks must be submitted within one month following the completion of the course(s) and no later than one month prior to the program start date.

Alternate Admission Option: Alternate Admission status may be offered to applicants who have not or will not complete one of the academic admission requirements. To be considered under Alternate Admission Status, applicants will be asked to provide the following:

  1. (Required) Transcript(s) showing any completed high school and post-secondary courses
  2. (Required) Letter of Introduction and Intent, outlining the following:
    • Introduce yourself
    • Indicate why you wish to enrol in the program
    • Elaborate on your career goals
    • Detail your experience relevant to this program and the industry
  3. (Required) A resume of your work history, extracurricular activities, volunteer service, etc. for the last 5 years
  4. (Optional) Include copies of any tickets and/or certificates you currently hold (e.g.: first aid, safety tickets, etc.)
  5. (Optional) Letter(s) of reference from current or past employers/coaches/etc. (maximum of two letters)

*Submitting Alternate Admission material does not guarantee admission*

Transfer Options: Olds College has developed agreements with other educational institutions to allow for transition to Olds College, or to another institution to continue your education. Articulations & Agreements

Out of Province Applicants: Please refer to the Provincial Equivalency Chart for course equivalencies.

International Applicants: Olds College welcomes applications from International Applicants and those who have completed their high school education outside of Canada. Please note, it is still necessary to meet all of the noted admission requirements, including English Language Proficiency.

Tuition & Fees

  • Year 1: Tuition: $5,795 / Fees: $1,370 / Books & Supplies:$1,150

  • Year 2: Tuition: $5,795 / Fees: $1,370 / Books & Supplies: $800

Please refer to the current Fee Schedule for complete details.

* Please note that international students pay 3.5 times the domestic tuition amount. These fees are provided as estimates only for the purposes of budgeting. All students should refer to the Fee Schedule for the most accurate information and all fees are subject to change.*

Tuition, Fees & Payments

Scholarships & Student Awards

Olds College offers over 450 awards, valued at $500,000+ in scholarships, bursaries and prizes. Thanks to our industry partners, alumni, and friends of Olds College we are fortunate to offer a generous student awards program to students.

For additional information on scholarships, bursaries and prizes at Olds College, visit Scholarships & Awards

Entrance Awards Available!

Entrance awards range from $250 - $1500 for students applying for the upcoming academic year and have paid the tuition deposit by the deadline.

Awards are selected randomly from those that have applied and qualify based on the criteria.
Award will be applied as a tuition credit to the student's account after the add/drop course deadline, confirming full-time attendance.
Not all that apply will receive an entrance award.

Student Funding

For information on how to apply for government student loans, financial aid or for help with financial planning, visit our Student Funding page.

Course Details

For course descriptions and requisites, view the Academic Calendar.

Academic Calendar: Horticulture Technologist Diploma

Year 1
Year 2
  • Complete all of the following
    • Completed the following:
      • ARB1200 - Pruning Trees for Structure and Health
      • HRT2000 - Starting a Horticulture Business
      • HRT2300 - Developing a Specialty Landscape
      • HRT2600 - Managing Pests II
      • WTR1200 - Managing Water Systems
      • HRT2900 - Horticulture Field Studies III
    • A competitive entry process may apply to the Horticulture elective selection.
    • Completed at least 4 of the following:
      • HRT2250 - Digital Graphics for Landscape Design
      • HRT2100 - An Entrepreneurial Approach to Processing
      • HRT2450 - Horticulture Field Production
      • HRT1600 - Producing Greenhouse Crops
      • HRT2150 - Exploring Non-Conventional Food Production
      • HRT2800 - Managing Landscape Construction
      • HRT2850 - Designing Landscapes
      • HRT2050 - Designing with Fresh Flowers
      • HRT2350 - Applied Horticulture Ecology

Career Opportunities

Olds College has a solid reputation working with employers in the industry! This directly translates into jobs for our graduates. Opportunities include, but are not limited to:

  • Greenhouses
  • Parks and recreation departments
  • Cannabis production facilities
  • Environmental remediation firms
  • Horticultural equipment and material suppliers/manufacturers

Visit ALIS to find Occupational Profiles with current wages, industry trends and more!

ALIS Occupational Profiles

Admitted Student Information

Program Dates

Find out when your term start and end dates are, so that you know when you are expected to be in attendance. For more information, please review the Program Dates & Fee Schedule.

Class Registration

You will be registered into your classes automatically. This will happen approximately 1 month prior to the start-date for your program. You will be notified once you have been timetabled into your courses. You will be able to see your class schedule in your My Olds College account. If you need to make any changes to your class registration, please contact the Office of the Registrar.

Technology Recommendation

It is strongly recommended that you come to Olds College with the following technology:

  • A laptop is preferred

As part of your student accounts, all students have access to Office 365 for the duration of their time with Olds College. To access this you just need to follow these steps.

  • Go to portal.office.com
  • Enter your Olds College email address and password
  • Once logged in there is a button on the right that says "Install Office Apps"

This will give you access to the full Office suite on your computer, for both Windows and Mac based platforms.

Materials & Supplies:

The following items are required to be purchased prior to the start of your program:

  • Steel-toed boots: CSA Approved
  • Safety glasses: CSA Approved
  • Durable work gloves
  • Coveralls or similar work clothing

In addition, it is also suggested that you bring some of your own reference books on the identification and use of landscape plants (e.g. annuals, perennials, trees, and shrubs) and of landscape pests. There is also an extensive selection of materials available in the College library.

Information on other required textbooks and any further supplies will be provided as you attend each class. All books and supplies will be available during the first few weeks of classes in the College Campus Store.

Textbook Order Form

Other Important Information:

  • Time Requirements: This program is delivered using a modified schedule: most courses are scheduled over a 7.5 week block.  Within each course you will be attending class for 3 hours per day, Monday to Friday during these blocks. Classes are normally scheduled between 9 am and noon with some labs scheduled in the afternoons. In addition, you should anticipate several hours of additional study each afternoon and evening and on weekends, which may require the use of on-campus resources like the Herbarium, Greenhouses, or the Botanic Gardens

    Some courses may require or provide additional opportunities that involve evening/weekend classes or overnight field trips. You must be prepared to make the personal arrangements necessary to allow you to participate in the full range of classroom activities if you are to gain all the competencies required in each course. Notice of field trips will be given well in advance and it is your responsibility to participate. Off-campus events make up a valuable part of your training and further the development of essential skills. Times and duration of each off-campus event will vary but typically involve leaving and returning at times that are outside of normal class hours.
  • Student Clubs: The Horticulture Club is a group that offers an additional dimension to your Olds College experience. There are also a number of college sports teams, some of which participate at the inter-collegiate level while others are purely recreational.

  • Additional Skills: Basic computer skills are recommended for all and it is certainly beneficial to have some prior experience with computers before you arrive at the College. A familiarity and comfort in use of Google Docs, word processing, spreadsheet and e-mailing software will be a definite asset.

  • Lockers: All you need to do during your first few days at Olds is to select one without a lock and it’s yours for the duration. I strongly recommend that you select a locker in the first week of classes because of high demand. You are required to provide your own lock.

For More Information

Our Admissions office can help navigate you through the admissions process and answer any questions you have about your program of study. 

☎ 403.556.8281
☎ 1.800.661.6537
Inquire about this program

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