Bylaws Section 1. Unit Goals and Objectives


The Department of Horticulture at Michigan State University is a unit of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR), and participates with other units in the College and University in the broad mission of expanding, preserving, transmitting, and implementing scientific skills and knowledge in plant sciences. Horticulture has been part of the Michigan State University curricula since 1857 and has been a department since 1883.

As part of a land grant university, the Department of Horticulture is actively engaged in the generation and application of scientific knowledge to practical problems and issues related to the horticultural segment of agriculture. The Department has three broad mission areas: research, education, and extension/outreach/service.

The research mission of the Department encompasses generation and dissemination of knowledge to aid horticultural industries and allied endeavors. This includes making discoveries in the plant sciences; promoting the use of plants and plant products for improved human health and a safe environment; improving the characteristics, quality and availability of horticultural products; and strengthening the world’s horticultural industries. Horticulture faculty members are extensively involved in dynamic research projects that are supported by international, federal, state and private agencies and industry/commodity groups, and range from fundamental science investigations to practical issues and stakeholder-oriented problem solving. Research results are disseminated to scientific peers, industry stakeholders and the public through publications and other channels.

The educational mission of the Department is to prepare students for horticulture related careers. Within the undergraduate program, the Department offers curricula leading to an Agricultural Technology Certificate or a Bachelor of Science Degree in Horticulture. Basic and applied courses in the curricula prepare students for horticulture-related careers as well as graduate studies in plant sciences. Within the graduate program, the goal is to produce outstanding plant scientists for academic, research, and applied careers who contribute to the discipline and society. The undergraduate and graduate curricula are continuously updated to introduce new concepts, practices, and technologies.

The extension/outreach/service mission of the Department is to provide research-based information to the citizens of Michigan and beyond. The Department has numerous Extension and outreach programs serving industry professionals and homeowners. The faculty fulfill this through professional activities such as participation in international, national, regional, state and other professional associations; editorial activities for professional journals; work with government agencies and non-governmental organizations; consulting with business interests; and assisting with small businesses with using technology developed in faculty research.