Forward Facing Into 2024

As we move into 2024 and I reflect on this year’s accomplishments, I’m struck by how forward-facing our department is. 

Agriculture is unique, juxtaposing deep history with emerging trends while conserving our natural resources and improving the environment. It would be easy, albeit ineffective, to put business-as-usual on repeat. But we don’t do easy. We do the extraordinary, and that requires forward-facing grit.   

Our research leads the way on emerging issues like climate change (saltwater intrusion, carbon sequestration), the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning, soil health, environmental stressors, and sustainably resilient farming systems. They are the fields of the future.

We’re simultaneously developing the next-generation leaders in crop, soil, and environmental sciences. Our expanding student body drives us, inspires us and impresses us with their spirit of inquiry and achievements. And they attract a following that keeps enrollment on the rise.

We are forward-facing in serving diverse clientele and stakeholders who often act as the front door to the college and the university. Our Extension programs deliver training and solutions for complex crop, soil, and environmental issues directly to farmers, agents and businesses who are powering North Carolina’s $100 billion ag economy. 

And we take our mission out into the world. Globally, we deliver education in over twenty-five countries, including workshops and study abroad courses in areas like row crops, soil properties, cover crops, and turfgrass.

We can do these things because of the power of our Pack. Our faculty, staff, and students strengthen our department and national ranking as one of the best crop and soil sciences departments. 

But the need for innovation persists. We are excited to share our 2023 Year in Review and see how our forward-facing focus will advance our mission of “Growing the Future” in 2024.


Happy trails,

Jeff Mullahey

Department Head

NC State Crop and Soil Sciences