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This article in CS

  1. Vol. 43 No. 6, p. 1938-1944
    Received: Nov 25, 2002

    * Corresponding author(s): todd_wehner@ncsu.edu
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Survey of U.S. Land-Grant Universities for Training of Plant Breeding Students

  1. Nihat Guner and
  2. Todd C. Wehner *
  1. Dep. of Horticultural Sci., North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC 27695-7609


A survey was conducted to identify land-grant universities in the USA having plant breeding programs, and to determine the number of domestic and international plant breeding students graduating at the M.S. and Ph.D. levels from those programs in 1995 to 2000. A total of 71 U.S. land-grant universities were identified. There were 409 (53%) Ph.D. and 361 (47%) M.S. degrees awarded. Of the total, 362 (47%) graduates were domestic and 408 (53%) were international. There was no major change in the total number of plant breeding graduates during the 6-yr period. The largest numbers of plant breeding students were trained in agronomy (crop science) departments, followed by plant breeding departments or groups, horticulture departments, plant science departments, and combined agronomy–horticulture departments. Universities with an average of seven or more graduates per year were University of Wisconsin-Madison, North Carolina State University, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Cornell University, University of Minnesota-St. Paul, Iowa State University, and Texas A&M University. The downward trend noted in previous surveys has continued to the point where there are only a few universities with large plant breeding programs remaining in each region of the country. If the USA is going to continue its public effort in plant breeding research and graduate student training, sufficient federal and state funding will have to be provided to support at least the current regional centers.

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