Message from the Bull Penn
As I start year five of my service as the head of the department, my review of the accomplishments of the members of department and thoughts of the future are spurred by a new round of strategic planning here at Penn State. The mission of the department now clearly includes Environmental Microbiology thanks to the hiring of two talented faculty who have also been critical in the development of the Penn State Microbiome Center. Likewise, our goals in research, teaching, and extension are documented in the numerous grants and awards to faculty (from APS and a variety of funding sources), students (NSF-GRFP, USDA Predoctoral, and NE-SARE), and staff (APS and departmental). With ideas in hand from our annual faculty retreat and discussions since, I am working on a draft of the plan that will lead our department into the future. As always, our land-grant mission of research, teaching, and extension will figure prominently into the strategic plan. Also, we will incorporate emphases on: research to mitigate climate change impacts, strengthening our traditional and aspirational areas of research, increasing equity, inclusion, and diversity in all aspects of our work, strengthening our commitment to disease diagnosis and management, and diving more deeply into our international agricultural work through our dual-title degree program and other aspects of our mission. We would love to collaborate with our alumni on our goals – Let us know if you are interested in collaboration in any of these areas. We Are Penn State!

Melanie Miller Foster
The Plant Pathology Graduate Program welcomes the 2019 Cohort to the department o(from left, back row) Tyler McFeaters, Ryan Guo, Chad Vosburg. In the front row are Chyanna McGee, Karen Luong and Alexander Varaksa. Also joining the department this year is Jeremy Held from the Plant Biology IDGP Graduate program.
Graduate Program
  • Siyi Ge, M.S., Plant Pathology
  • Sara Klee, Ph.D., Plant Pathology
  • Sara May, Ph.D., Plant Pathology
  • Joseph Walls, M.S., Plant Pathology
Undergraduate Program 
Plant Pathology Minor
  • Cullen Dixon, B.S., Plant Sciences
  • Ryan Ford, B.S., Biology
  • Trinity Hamm, B.S., Biology
  • Drew May, B.S., Biology
Vegetable pathology professor receives Excellence in Extension Award
Graduate student awarded Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education grant
Graduate student awarded Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education grant
This photo illustrates bacterial leaf spot symptoms on watermelon caused by Pseudomonas syringae. A USDA grant awarded to Penn State will support researchers as they explore bacterial pathogens causing leaf spot diseases.  IMAGE: ERIC NEWBERRY
The State Horticultural Association of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Apple Program have funded 25 new and ongoing research and extension projects conducted by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences and Penn State Extension. IMAGE: ELIZABETH TR. ARMSTRONG VIA PEXELS
Industry groups award funding for fruit research and extension projects
Mark Boudreau
Agronomy educator Jeff Graybill of Penn State Extension hand-harvests hemp stalks for fiber production. IMAGE: ALYSSA COLLINS
Penn State scientists expanding work to help farmers learn about industrial hemp
The newly formed Latinx Agricultural Network is an outgrowth of a project spearheaded at Penn State by Ilse Huerta, left, a doctoral candidate in agricultural and extension education, and Emma Rosenthal, a doctoral candidate in plant pathology. IMAGE: PENN STATE
Latinx Agricultural Network formed at Penn State to address community's needs
Writing Productivity session attendees pause for a photo. IMAGE: CAROLEE BULL
  • Melanie Miller Foster
    Courtesy Faculty
  • Emily Grandinette
    Research Technologist Bell Lab
  • Abdelmonim Ebrahim
    Postdoctoral Scholar in Hockett and Bull Labs
  • Sharifa Crandall
    Assistant Professor of Soilborne Disease Dynamics and Management
Looking for a microbial needle in a mushroom haystack: how can microbiome analysis be used to control blotch disease in mushroom
Samuel Martins, Ph.D.

Translating Taxonomy and Microbiome Data for Plant & Mushroom Disease Management
Carolee Bull, Ph.D.

Know your enemy before you go to war: a story of bacterial blotch of mushroom
Samuel Martins, Ph.D.

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