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PhD Position: Strawberry Transplant Optimization and Flower Physiology

Strawberries in cartons

A 3-year PhD position is open in the small fruits research and extension group at NC State University in Raleigh, NC. We are seeking an exceptional candidate who will be integral to investigating optimized strawberry propagation practices, using field and controlled environment technology. The candidate selected for this position should have extensive experience in collecting plant physiological data, preferably in both: field and enclosed environments. We are looking for a highly motivated, organized and independent individual, familiar with study design, analysis and statistical software. The ideal candidate will have a record of published research papers, pay attention to detail, have superior time management skills and excellent communication skills. Our project team is dynamic and consists of a diverse group of colleagues working across several departments at NCSU, more than 10 collaborating universities and multiple industry partners across the nation. Our group offers comprehensive professional development opportunities for graduate students, including (but not limited) to the development of professional development plans, networking, programming, writing and presentation skills.

The main responsibility of the candidate will be to conduct trials to optimize practices related to strawberry transplant production, including rooting, flower mapping, field and greenhouse evaluations. The project entails on-farm evaluations as well as greenhouse and controlled environment experimentation at NC State University. This is a highly collaborative position, and the successful candidate needs exceptional communication and leadership skills, and needs to feel comfortable in a collaborative environment. We expect direct communication with industry partners, the independent management of time-lines, and the design and execution of experiments under the supervision of the main advisor and the PhD committee. This position requires frequent over- night travel across the east coast as well as to the west coast.

Stipend: Annual Stipend of $28,000. Tuition and health insurance are covered under Graduate Student Support Plan.

Deadline for Applications / Start Date: The position is available for Fall 2022.

Qualifications: MS degree from a credited institution in biology, horticulture, plant pathology, agronomy, plant physiology, controlled environment agriculture or a related field is required. Experience in MS Office, Adobe Suite and the statistical program R is needed. Documented experience in fruit production systems and/or asexual crop propagation is highly preferred.

How to apply: Applications must be submitted online through the NCSU Graduate School (see the ‘Apply Now’ option at

For more information contact: Dr. Mark Hoffmann, Department of Horticultural Science, NC State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, Email:, Phone (919) 352-8006; Fax (919) 515-2505.

Work Location, Licenses and Certifications: Department of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC. Our outstanding faculty and strong collaborations with other scientists make us an internationally-recognized center for innovative research and graduate training in Horticulture. The Raleigh-Durham area consistently ranks among the best places to live in the United States, largely due to its vibrant intellectual community and ample access to recreational and cultural activities.