Department

About the Department

Agronomy is focused on new and improved ways of agriculture. New methods of conservation. Improved soil health. New approaches to bioenergy. Improved water quality. Advanced genetic traits. The end goal is producing food, fuel and fiber in a more efficient and economical way for the benefit of people and the environment around the world.

We are applying science to advance crop production systems while protecting and improving air, soil and water quality.

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Every year the MS Agronomy program presents the Campbell Award to a deserving lecturer in the program. This year Dan Dobill is the recipeint of the Campbell honor.

Dobill started as an instructional developer in the fall of 1997. He was eventually promoted to program coordinator before leaving the university to work for Pioneer Hi-Bred in 2005. Currently, Dobill is a Sales Effectiveness Manager at Corteva Agriscience covering the southern United States.

Growing up in southern Illinois on an acreage near St. Louis, Missouri Dobill was active in 4-H and FFA. He recieved both his undergradauate and graduate degrees from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale majoring in agronomy and soil management. He's had multiple roles within training and sales at Corteva Agriscience (previously DuPont Pioneer).

Dobill teaches Agronomy 502 and has taught over 400 students over the years. He served as major professor for one student as well.

Spencer Barriball, student in our MS Agronomy distance masters program recently won the Muenchrath award. Named after Deborah Muenchrath the award is giving to the student with the most outstanding creative component. It is available to a student who has distinguished themselves academically, creatively and professionally. 

Research Excellence Award – The award is to recognize graduate students for outstanding research accomplishments as documented in resulting theses and dissertations. The Research Excellence Program is administered by the Graduate College with additional support from the Graduate and Professional Student Senate.

     Mariana Gomez Botero

Brown Graduate Fellowship – The Brown Graduate Fellowship is used to strategically advance ISU research in the areas of study that are governed by the Valentine Hammes Family and Leopold Hammes Brown Family Trust

Research Excellence Award – The award is to recognize graduate students for outstanding research accomplishments as documented in resulting theses and dissertations. The Research Excellence Program is administered by the Graduate College with additional support from the Graduate and Professional Student Senate.

     Summer = Mitchell Baum

     Fall = Ramawatar Yadav

Teaching Excellence Award – The award recognizes and encourage outstanding achievement by graduate students in teaching. The program is administered by the Graduate College with additional support from the Graduate and Professional Student Senate.

The Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research (FFAR) awarded a $2,044,214 grant to our Dr. Sotirios Archontoulis to evaluate how maize breeding, field management and environment affect sustainable corn production. Iowa State University and Bayer Crop Science provided matching funds for a $4,089,857 total investment. The Leopold Center for Sustainable AgriculturePurdue University and Donald Danforth Plant Science Center are also supporting this project.

Scientists have invested great time and effort into making connections between a plant’s genotype, or its genetic makeup, and its phenotype, or the plant’s observable traits. Understanding a plant’s genome helps plant biologists predict how that plant will perform in the real world, which can be useful for breeding crop varieties that will produce high yields or resist stress.

George Washington Carver's graduation photo George Washington Carver received his bachelor's (1894) and master's (1896) degrees from Iowa State, served as a faculty member and later joined the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. He gained an international reputation for his plant research and creation of more than 300 products from peanuts. In 1994, Iowa State posthumously awarded him a Doctor of Humane Letters, and in 1998, an all-university celebration carried his name.

In 2008 Iowa State University established an endowed faculty in chair in honor of George Washington Carver, who was the first African-American student and faculty member here.

Climate change and soil erosion feed into one another in an environmental feedback loop that can have big consequences for Iowa land, but an Iowa State University agronomist is developing new models to illuminate these complex interactions.

Developing these new computer models of soil erosion and topography changes requires both innovative big-data technology as well as painstaking validation of soil measurements in the real world, said Bradley Miller, an ISU assistant professor of agronomy. Miller recently received support from the National Science Foundation to continue his research to develop updated soil maps of Iowa as well as erosion models capable of predicting how environmental conditions will influence Iowa’s soil in the future.

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