Ezequiel Saenz, a lecturer at the National University of Rosario (Faculty of agronomy, Zavalla, Argentina), is visiting Iowa State University as a visiting scholar under the guidance of Dr. Sotirios Archontoulis, associate professor in agronomy. The program focuses on researching soybean and corn quality attributes important to the food processing industry. During the 3-month program, Ezequiel will collect and analyze field data and conduct report development. “One of my major goals visiting Iowa State University is to experience the daily life in a top-class research group. Moreover, I aim to enrich my crop modeling knowledge during my stay at the Integrated Cropping Systems Lab.”
Currently, Ezequiel is leading field trials related to leaf area evolution across the corn crop cycle while also working on a kernel growth project that studies the grain-filling period across different corn hybrids released in the market in the last 30 years. Collaborating with Dr. Archontoulis and others in his lab allows Ezequiel to build upon his previous knowledge and research on carotenoid profiles in maize genotypes while comparing and contrasting crop production in different climates. The most memorable experience thus far for Ezequiel was when he had the opportunity to present his previous work in Argentina with lab members at the Integrated Cropping System lab.
After his visiting scholar program ends on August 31, 2022, Ezequiel will return to the National University of Rosario, where he plans to complete his Ph.D. in the school of agricultural sciences. Ezequiel plans to continue collaborations with Dr. Archontoulis as he works to predict how different environmental scenarios affect corn seed yield and kernel quality in Argentinean cropping systems.