Expanding an enterprise, farm or otherwise, requires building — building teams, infrastructure, and energy to tackle the challenges ahead.
2022 has been a year of expansion for our department. The growing demand for agricultural and environmental solutions is catapulting us forward. We’ve added 68 new hires this year, including four new faculty in key areas of emerging need.
We’ve also expanded our space and interdisciplinary connections through the opening of the N.C. Plant Sciences Building. Two of the four PSI platform directors call our department home, and much of the plant and soils research from our department is tightly interwoven in PSI projects. We’re also energized by interest in a new applied research and extension facility we call PTO (the Plant and Environmental Technology Operations Hub). This proposed addition to the Lake Wheeler Road Field Laboratory would provide demonstrable practical impacts for our student, farming, and industry stakeholders.
But maybe most importantly, we’re expanding our horizons. Our students and faculty are winning national and international honors and are spreading influence with their insightful research around our campus, state and world. And our extension programs continue to deliver data-driven expertise to clientele facing increasingly tight margins.
So expansion is baked into our mission. To grow the food, fuel, fiber, and feed and protect the resources of our soil, air and water, we must expand our opportunities and community. We will grow in 2023 focusing in areas such as academic programs (hands-on learning, diversity of students), international activities in research and extension, improvement in facilities, and building a stronger department community to better serve our students and clientele.
I’m eager to share with you the noteworthy undertakings and accomplishments of our faculty, staff and students in our 2022 Year in Review.
Thank you for your shared energy in expanding the impact of Crop and Soil Sciences. We invite you to continue with us in 2023, Growing the Future.