Frederick Dreer Award

The Horticulture Section of the School of Integrative Plant Science offers a wonderful opportunity for one or more graduate students to spend several months abroad pursuing interests related to horticulture and/or landscape architecture. The two major goals of the Dreer Award are

  • To help students increase their knowledge of horticulture and landscape architecture.
  • To give students an opportunity to travel to a place where they have never been before for any length of time. The expectation is that students will remain abroad for several months and engage in an in-depth experience learning about and applying principles of science and design.  

The instructions below spell out the procedure for applying. It is quite simple.  A written proposal is submitted to the Dreer Committee by Monday, March 11, 2024 after which an informal interview follows, generally in a week or two. See also the list of past Dreer winners and their areas of interest below.  The only obligation of the Dreer award winner is to write to the Dreer Committee monthly while overseas, and upon return to the United States, give a seminar about their time abroad to students and faculty.

Students can take a summer and a semester’s leave or a year’s leave of absence to partake of the award. It can also be broken into two parts if that makes sense with your proposal. If you would like to talk over a potential idea for the Dreer with a member of the Committee, please contact Marvin Pritts (Horticulture), Jennifer Birkeland (Landscape Architecture) or Neil Mattson (Horticulture). 

The Dreer Award of approximately $8,000-$15,000 will be awarded to one or more graduate students from the School of Integrative Plant Science or Department of Landscape Architecture and will cover several months of work or study abroad.  The purpose of the award is to provide a worthy graduate student with an opportunity to study or engage in directed practice related to horticulture abroad (any country outside of the United States and Canada). It cannot be used to pay for an academic semester abroad, although it can be used to extend the semester.

Those eligible to apply for the award are graduate students with at least one-semester’s prior residency at Cornell including:

  • Graduate students in the graduate fields in the School of Integrative Plant Science and graduate students in the Department of Landscape Architecture.

An electronic application is due March 11, 2024 addressed to Professor Marvin Pritts (mpp3 [at] (mpp3[at]cornell[dot]edu)), and should contain the following:

  • Brief Biography - who you are, where you are from, what you have done, your academic performance, honors, special awards, and a picture (for identification only - optional).
  • Objectives - what do you intend to accomplish during your year abroad and why is the proposed travel location the best place to meet those objectives?
  • How do you intend to fulfill these objectives?  A description of where and when you intend to travel and what you intend to do and see, and why you have chosen these locations (as detailed itinerary as you feel is necessary).
  • Of what value will such travel be to you in the future?  What do you expect to learn, how will this help you, what are your future plans and goals?
  • Financial statement--what is your best estimate of your expenses and how will you finance the trip?
  • Anything else you feel would be helpful to explain to the reviewing committee why you should be chosen for this award.

Applicants are urged to thoroughly research the possibilities for carrying out their travel objectives, so the focus of their proposed travel is well defined.  Library research, contacting organizations overseas and talking with faculty are strongly encouraged. 

The Committee will review the written applications and interview each applicant personally.

The interview will be informal for about 20 minutes and arranged at a mutually acceptable time.  No special preparation will be necessary.

After the personal interviews, the Committee will make a final recommendation. All applicants will be notified as soon as possible - generally within a week after the interview.

The Committee has the option of not recommending an award if applications are not up to a standard of quality.

Following the choice of a recipient, the Committee will continue to work with the recipient to develop program and itinerary, including contacts overseas and other necessary commitments.

Possible fields of endeavor might include (but are not limited to):

  • A work-study or practice in commercial establishments (nurseries, greenhouses, farms or industries such as bulb growing, etc.).
  • Work at botanical gardens, experiment stations, etc.
  • Experience in private landscape firms with a horticulture focus
  • Extension of formal study in a college or university.  Note, this cannot be used to pay for a semester abroad.

The Committee will consider the scholarship, character, integrity and maturity of the applicant, as well as the purpose as stated in the application, and evidence of a serious interest as indicated by the application.  Also considered will be the promise of making continued contributions to the study of horticulture and landscape architecture.  Note that scholastic average is not the sole basis for making the award.

  • The Dreer Fellowship is a prize. The travel funds will be made available to a particular person to carry out a specified, purposeful, formal or informal study or work experience related to horticulture at a particular time.  While minor deviations from the original purpose, program, and timing will be granted, major changes will not.

  • Each awardee must report by letter to the Dreer Award Committee Chairman at least every month.  This series of accounts of experiences and impressions is read with great interest by many faculty and students and provides background for future planners.  (These letter/reports are an obligation of the awardee. A blog will suffice.)

  • A returned awardee should notify the Dreer Award Committee Chair promptly and make arrangements for a mutually agreeable time for an oral report to the faculty and students.  This report, the final responsibility of the award winner, is most helpful to the faculty as a background for future awards, is a stimulant to potential applicants, and is of significant educational value to other students in the College.



  • 1956 Richard Simon - Work in herbaceous nurseries & botanical gardens in northern Europe.
  • 1957 Gail Anderson - Landscape architecture in Sweden.
  • 1958 Natalie Gundrey - Plant materials and horticultural journalism in Europe.
  • 1960 Lawrence Sherk - Work in botanical gardens, specializing in woody plant hardiness in Europe.
  • 1960 Martin Cohen - Landscape architecture in Japan.
  • 1961 Morgan Holmes - Work in woody plant nurseries in northern Europe.
  • 1963 William Morton - Research at Wageningen, The Netherlands.
  • 1964 Martin Meyer - Research at Wageningen, The Netherlands.
  • 1964 Paul Blair - To study the genus Rhododendron at Royal Botanical Garden, Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • 1965 Steven Kettler - Commercial woody plant nursery production in England and Holland.
  • 1966 Stanley Kochanoff - Commercial floriculture production in England, Denmark, Germany and Holland.
  • 1966 Freek Vrugtman - To study taxonomic problems of woody plants at Wageningen, The Netherlands.
  • 1967 Jeffrey Moore - Turfgrass research in Northern Europe.
  • 1968 Charles Krueger - Marketing procedures in flower crops in Europe.
  • 1968 Thomas Oesau - Landscape architecture, Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • 1970 Charles Huckins - Taxonomic studies of Malus at Botanical Gardens and Herbaria in Europe and USSR.
  • 1970 Scott Drahos - History of landscape architecture in Italy.
  • 1970 Robert Stack - Botanical gardens and nursery production in Germany.
  • 1971 Gordon Carruth - Landscape architecture in Western Europe.
  • 1971 Terence Centner - Landscape architecture, University of Newcastle, England.
  • 1971 Robert Reiniger - Work in several major greenhouses ranges in France.
  • 1972 Margaret McEachron - Horticultural education, especially at Kew Gardens, England.
  • 1972 Richard Hardy - Landscape architecture study and work in office in England.
  • 1972 Linda Magrum - Tissue culture research at several European laboratories.
  • 1973 Harold Thurston - Aquatic plants in England.
  • 1974 Joshua Polan - National park design in South America.
  • 1975 Margery Koch - Tulip breeding, Wageningen, Netherlands.
  • 1976 Sheila Wertimer - History of English landscape gardens.
  • 1977 Pamela Rooney - Land reclamation with plants in Netherlands and Israel.
  • 1977 David Pomeroy - Park administration in Western Europe.
  • 1978 Karen Perkins - Study of ornamental plants and their care at leading botanical gardens in Scotland, England and Europe.
  • 1979 Harriet Henderson - Study plant material in Japan and their uses in landscape design.
  • 1979 Gail Sobel - Study problems involved in developing botanical gardens in South America.
  • 1980 Edward Kaufmann - Look at production, sale and use of plant materials floriculture and landscape architecture in Israel and The Netherlands.
  • 1981 Karren Drozin - Study in Portugal the development of a new city, some of the old cities, and to study at two of the Landscape Architecture Schools.
  • 1982 Thomas Doak - Study the architecture of golf courses in Scotland and England.
  • 1982 Jennifer Thorp - Study the marketing of flowers in England, France and Holland.
  • 1983 Audrey Hunter - Study horticultural therapy in Great Britain.
  • 1984 William Collins - Inside the English Garden - history, nursery production, plants used, garden design and garden construction and maintenance.
  • 1984 Irene Lekstutis - Investigate herbaceous gardening in Great Britain, to examine sources, selection, and utilization of herbaceous perennials in Great Britain.
  • 1985 Ricardo Austrich - Visit gardens and plant herbariums in Spain to study, from a design perspective, the effect of flora introduced from New World exploration.
  • 1985 Rick Manning - Visit The Netherlands, Great Britain, and Western Europe to study ecological landscape design and management techniques used in parks and open spaces.
  • 1986 Robert Bartolomei - Travel to Germany, Switzerland, and The Netherlands to study various new cultivars of perennials and determine feasibility of introducing them to US.
  • 1987 Gilbert Hanse - Study golf course architecture in the British Isles
  • 1987 Michael Murgiano - To observe the development of horticultural and marketing techniques related to the interiorscape industry in Europe.
  • 1988 Mark Veckerelli - The Garden Festival ideals of Great Britain and Germany, and how they relate to the American garden tradition.
  • 1989 John Tornes - The Chinese Approach to Landscape Architecture" Visiting PRC, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore.
  • 1990 Albert Joerger - Landscape Management Techniques in Costa Rica.
  • 1991 David Selby - Small Scale Sustainable Horticulture in Africa
  • 1992 Christopher Laughton - The Floriculture and Ornamental Horticulture Industry in Holland and Latvia
  • 1993 MaryAnn Harris - Garden Restoration/Preservation in The Republic of Ireland
  • 1994 Brian Ruhl - Golf Course Architecture in Great Britain and Ireland
  • 1995 Laura Nowak - Marketing, Production and Design in the Floriculture Industries of England, Holland and France.
  • 1996 Kristine Miller - Gertrude Jekyll Gardens
  • 1996 Christopher - Monti Golf Courses of the British Isles: Golf's Natural Legacy
  • 1997 David Zinkand - A study of Golf Architecture in the British Isles
  • 1998 Jerry Parementer - Landscape Construction/ Management in UK
  • 1998 Pietro Cipriano - Nursery and Landscape Management in UK and Italy
  • 1999 Michele Wurm - A study of the 19th Century English Urban Park Using Visual Structure as a Specific Guide
  • 2000 Carol Omar - Schoolyard Ecosystems in the UK
  • 2001 Nicole Mason - Organic Horticulture Management Systems in New Zealand
  • 2002 Matt Murphy - A Comparative Analysis of Viticulture Practices in the Old and New Worlds
  • 2002 Carlyn Worstell - Zoological Park Horticulture and Design at the World's Major Zoos in Europe
  • 2003 Eric Hsu - Plant taxonomy study in Great Britain
  • 2003 Josephine Alcott - Study of ancient irrigation and horticulture in Spain and Morocco
  • 2004 Steve Warto - Golf course architecture in Great Britain and South America
  • 2004 Chad Miller - Bulb Breeding in the Netherlands
  • 2004 Craig Johnson - Urban Forestry in Southeast Asia
  • 2005 Michelle Leinfelder - Environmental and Economic Sustainability Studies:Spain, Chile and New Zealand
  • 2006 Sarah Nell Davidson - A Horticultural Crop at the Center of Controversy: Resistance to Papaya Ringspot Virus in Genetically Engineered Plants
  • 2007 Naalamle Amissah - Spice production in India , Indonesia and Thailand
  • 2007 Margaret Lapp - Ethnobotany in South America
  • 2008 Vinay Pagay - Viticulture in Australia, China and India
  • 2009 Chris Keil - Horticulture in the Czech Republic
  • 2009 Stephanie Gautama - Green Walls in Europe and Australia
  • 2010 Ellen Woods - Photo-documentation of plants in Costa Rica
  • 2010 I Maria Calderon - Phytoremediation of polluted water. Austraila
  • 2010 Erin Marteal - Permaculture as a an educational Tool in Botanic Gardens
  • 2011 Alliison Skaer - Evaluation of International Education Programs for  Public Gardens
  • 2012 Ashley Marchesi - Urban Agriculture in Latin America
  • 2012 Cheni Filios - Post Harvest Horticulture in New Zealand and Europe
  • 2013 Xiaoyu Bai - Phytoremediation in Australia and China
  • 2013 Lindsay Jordan - Cool season Viticulture in New Zealand
  • 2014 Miles Schwartz Sax - Plant Conservation in South Africa
  • 2014 Ian Peach - Provisional Parks of Christchurch, New Zealand
  • 2014 Brett Morgan - Hydroponics in Switzerland
  • 2015 Adam Karl - Dry land viticulture in Spain
  • 2015 Megan Hall - Soft Rot study of grapes in Tasmania
  • 2015 James Keach - Impatiens study in Thailand
  • 2016 Garrett Craig-Lucas - Vegetation and Port Development in Europe
  • 2016 Raquel Kallas - Viticulture in Australia
  • 2016 Bi Ying (Bella) Zhao - Tropical Plants in Singapore
  • 2017 Emily Reiss - Integrated Crop and Livestock production in Sweden
  • 2017 Ilia Savin - Landscape plantings in Copenhagen to address climate change
  • 2018 Adriana Hidalgo - The role of horticulture in remediating environmental degradation in Haiti and the Dominican Republic
  • 2018 Sonam Sherpa - Andisol soils and their agroecosystems in Japan
  • 2019 Dean Yeh - Nature Based Landscape Design in Denmark and Sweden
  • 2019  Jihany  Hassun  -  Californication of the Sertao 
  • 2019 Juana Ucros - Study coffee and cacao in Columbia.
  • 2020 Akshai Wilkinson - The role of landscape planning on species habitat rehabilitation in New Zealand
  • 2021 Award suspended due to Covid
  • 2022 Daniel Meyer - Study of urban forests in France
  • 2022 Sulaiman Meriles Demry - Work with Eco Caminhos program in Brazil
  • 2022 Lloyd Jones - Viticultural Practices in Australia
  • 2023 Coby Chock - Tropical Viticulture
  • 2023 Kathryn Chesebrough - Urban Forest Design in Kenya