Joshua plans on using his degree to be a researcher

Joshua started as a M.S. student and is now working on a PhD in Horticulture

Featured Student

Joshua Vander Weide is working on a PhD in Horticulture under the direction of Dr. Paulo Sabbatini. His hometown is Battle Creek, Michigan. We asked Josh a few questions about himself.

Why did you choose Horticulture as your advanced degree?

My senior year of undergraduate, I was working in Dr. Sabbatini’s lab, and became interested in wine grapes and wine as an application of my degree in Food Science, which focused heavily on chemistry.

What has been the best experience in grad school so far?

I really enjoyed the 3-day orientation trip for incoming grad students with Dr. Beaudry the week before classes began. It was a great way to become more familiar with the horticultural industries important to Michigan, and helped each of the incoming students get to know each other. I think this is one of the reasons our graduate student group is so interactive both during and outside of school.

What is the best selling point about horticulture and your choice to study it at MSU that you would like others to know?

The resources (instrumentation, expertise, core facilities) available for graduate students to utilize for their research are incredible, both within the Horticulture Department, as well as the plant sciences as a whole. I have taken advantage of these resources on multiple occasions, and my program has undoubtedly benefited as a result.

What are your future plans (i.e. – what would be your ideal job after you graduate)?

I originally started here as a Master’s student, and have since decided to continue and obtain a Ph.D. The reason is that I enjoy research, and see myself as a researcher in the future. Although I have not yet decided whether I plan to work in academia or industry, I am drawn to the mentorship role that is more intrinsic to academia.

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