- Field of Study: Horticulture
- Hometown: Goshen, NY
- Fun fact: I used to be conductor of the Pep Band as an undergrad at Cornell!
- View Ryan's LinkedIn profile
What were you doing prior to your degree program?
Before this program, I was pursuing my Bachelor’s here at Cornell. I majored in Environmental Science and Sustainability and minored in music.
What were the biggest obstacles you had to overcome in order to participate in the MPS program?
Coming right out of undergrad, the biggest obstacle for me was choosing a program I wanted to apply to. I am so glad that I was able to connect with the CEA program in CALS as I absolutely love it!
Why did you choose to pursue the MPS degree?
As an undergrad, I took a greenhouse class with Bill Miller and absolutely loved it so I decided to learn more about CEA. While looking at my options for after I graduated, I found this program and thought it looked really good. I eventually talked with my advisor and decided that this program was perfect for me. I felt I could continue my goals from a sustainability aspect and also learn a new skill.
What are the strengths of your program, in your opinion?
I enjoyed the ability to craft a program based on my interests and needs. In addition, the faculty and staff are amazing and the research being done is top-notch. I love the atmosphere of the horticulture program — everyone is very friendly and very willing to help each other.
What were some of the most rewarding moments while in your MPS program?
Seeing my project come to life! Coming up with a plan and then seeing that plan realized was really amazing. In addition, I love working with all the incredible people in my lab group.
What are your short term and long term career goals?
In the short term I am looking to work as a grower in a hydroponic greenhouse, and long term I would love to have my own greenhouse!
What courses stand out as most helpful for your specific career goals?
Two of my favorite courses have been my hydroponics class taught by my advisor Neil Mattson, and Crop Physiology taught by Tim Setter. Hydroponics provided valuable hands on experience in skills that I didn’t have before. Crop Physiology helps to explain some of the mechanisms for how hydroponics works.
What advice would you give to your younger self embarking on the journey of graduate school?
I would tell myself to remember how important connections with others, both personally and professionally, are. I am learning new things all the time from my peers and certainly would not be where I am today without them.
How has your MPS experience changed you, both personally and professionally?
The MPS program exposed me to lots of different information, views, and guidance that I don’t think I would have gotten anywhere else. The classes have not only prepared me academically, but showed me how to act in the professional world as well.
What professional organizations are you involved in?
I am part of the Cornell Big Red Pep Band where we play at all the sporting events!