Why PSM?

Are you interested in a GREEN career? Do you like working outdoors in the summer months? Plant, Soil and Microbial Science students are focused in two important career areas: the food-producing industry and the turfgrass industry. Here is a snapshot of what you can be if your future is GREEN.

Applying to MSU and Earning a Degree or Certificate in Agriculture

Agronomic Sciences

Agriculture is the second largest industry in Michigan. We grow a diversity of crops in Michigan, and our students are interested in improving the production and management of these crops, the soils, and the environment. Agronomists work to improve food, fuel, and fiber production in sustainable systems while protecting the environment. Agronomists provide technical support to crop producers all over the world. Our graduates pursue careers in biotechnology and plant genetics, sustainable crop production, natural resources and soil conservation, and integrated pest management. Agronomists work in the public sector and in private industry; in business and in research settings. Agronomic sciences is a great field to be in, whether you are from a rural or urban area. If you enjoy working with people, like the outdoors, and want to integrate biology, ecology, and physical sciences into a career, check out Agronomic Sciences in Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences.

Turfgrass Management

Turfgrass is everywhere: your lawn, across your town, on the intramural sports fields, in Spartan stadium, and at the Forest Akers golf courses. Our graduates work in the golf industry, in sports field management, in professional lawn care businesses, and in sod production, Our graduates have career opportunities in every state in the U.S., as well as across the world. The MSU Turfgrass Team has designed and grown the soccer field for the last two summer Olympics! Turfgrass Management is a great career choice if you enjoy being outdoors when the grass is green, and if you like working with others to improve the performance of turfgrass to meet the needs of the industries that rely on turf.


Starting salary range for Plant, Soil and Microbial Science graduates are $30,000 - $75,000.

Career Opportunities in Agronomic Sciences:

  • Soil Scientist with NRCS
  • Soil conservationist with NRCS
  • Certified Crop Advisor
  • Crop Consultant
  • Agronomist with an Agribusiness
  • Agribusiness manager
  • Salesperson: seed, fertilizer, crop protection chemicals
  • Research technician with private industry or a university
  • Michigan Department of Agriculture
  • Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
  • Michigan Certified Seed
  • Farm manager
  • Extension educator

Career Opportunities in Turfgrass Management:

  • Assistant golf course superintendent
  • Sports field managers: professional, collegiate, high schools, municipalities
  • Professional lawn care businesses
  • Sod production farms

Additional Information

For More Information on the Agronomic SciencesTurfgrass Management or the Advanced Study option, please contact one of the Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences academic advisors:

For More Information on the Plant Pathology Program,  please contact one of these Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences academic advisors