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Department of Agronomy

Department of Agronomy
Kansas State University
2004 Throckmorton PSC
1712 Claflin Road
Manhattan, KS 66506-0110

Ph: 785-532-6101
Fx: 785-532-6094

Welcome to the Department of Agronomy

Discover the Possibilities!

More Awards!

Dilooshi Weerasooriya won a Rotary International Graduate Student Scholarship

Andrew McGowan won the SSSA Francis Clark Soil Biology Scholarship

Colby Moorberg will receive the Emil Truog Award from SSSA for his outstanding dissertation at NC State.  Just add that to the long list of reasons we are glad to have him on our faculty.

Vara Prasad will be named a Fellow of the CSSA.

College of Agriculture teaching awards:

Matti Kuykendall won the Richard Elmore Brown Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award.

Vara Prasad won the Graduate Teaching Award.

Our graduate students continue to collect honors. This past week Andrew McGowan won first place for his poster entitled "Bioenergy crop impacts on soil carbon sequestration, soil biophysical properties and N2O emissions in Manhattan, Kansas" at the Kansas State University Center for Sustainable Energy 2015 Energy Symposium. 

The following students received honors at the recent K-State Graduate Student Research Forum:

Ammar Bhandari, doctoral student in agronomy, first place in agricultural sciences poster session.

Pavithra Pitumpe Arachchige, doctoral student in agronomy, second place in interdisciplinary poster session.

Dilooshi Weerasooriya, doctoral student in agronomy, second place in interdisciplinary oral presentation session.

Spring 2015 Ag Report Published

Spring 2015 Ag Report Thumb


Recent Awards

Graduate students Huan Wang (Agronomy) and Devin Mangus (BAE) won two awards, the "2014 Best Overall Project" and "2014 DRS Employee's Choice" for a report and short video in a student contest at the National Student Infrared Imaging Competition in Melbourne, Florida in June.

Vara Prasad and Curtis Thompson have been named Fellows of the American Society of Agronomy.

Dorivar Ruiz Diaz will receive the SSSA Early Career Award.

Cathy Minihan will be recognized as the Unclassified Employee of the Year for Agronomy.

Kim Kerschen and Bryson Haverkamp were honored with the NACTA Graduate Student Teaching Award.

Nathan Nelson has received the honor of NACTA Fellow.

The Gamma Sigma Delta Awards took place Friday April 25th, 2014

The Department of Agronomy was well represented:

Evelyn Nordberg - one of three outstanding undergraduate research presentations recognized from the undergraduate research forum
Andrew Scherrer - Outstanding Undergraduate Student Research Award
Kim Kerschen - Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching, M.S.
Sruthi Narayanan - Outstanding Graduate Student Research, Ph.D.
Kevin Donnelly - Outstanding Advising
Jean Steiner - Distinguished Alumnus



Andrew McGowan won first place in the Center for Sustainable Energy poster competition

The Crops Judging Team took first place at the NACTA National Contest at NW Missouri State

Crops Team


Agronomy is expanding with the Agronomy Education Center Project

Agronomy Education Center

The proposed Agronomy Education Center will be located on the agronomy farm near the main campus of Kansas State University in Manhattan. The Agronomy Education Center would positively impact students of all ages, the university, corporate partners, and agriculturalists across the state, region, and world by enhancing our educational mission to serve the 3000+ individuals who utilize the agronomy farm each year. Learn more about our exciting Agronomy Education Center project

Just Another Day in Agronomy


The Wildcat Way: Chuck Rice


K-state crops team claims fifth straight national championship

2013 K-State Crops Team

MANHATTAN – The Kansas State University Crops Team recently captured the title of national champion for the fifth year in a row. K-State teams have now won the crops contest championship in twelve of the past fifteen years. To win the 2013 national title, the team won both the Kansas City American Royal Collegiate Crops Contest on Nov. 19 and the Chicago Collegiate Crops Contest on Nov. 23.

K-State placed first at both contests in plant-and-seed identification and grain grading, and second in seed analysis. Individually, the three K-State team members completed a rare sweep of the top three places in both contests.

Official members of the K-State team were Jeri Sigle, senior, Council Grove; Nathan Larson, sophomore, Kensington; and Morgan Halderson, senior, Delphos. Alternates were sophomores Sam Knauss, Paola; Tyler Herrs, Linn; and Ben Coomes, Girard. All are agronomy majors except Sigle, who is majoring in agricultural education with a minor in agronomy.

Sigle was the high individual overall in both contests. In Chicago she was first in grain grading with a perfect score, second in identification, and third in seed analysis. In Kansas City she was second in identification and seed analysis and fourth in grain grading.

Nathan Larson finished second overall in both contests, tying with Sigle in Chicago for first in grain grading with a perfect score, and finished first in identification and fifth in seed analysis. In Kansas City, he was first in identification and second in grain grading.

Morgan Halderson was third in both events, highlighted by first place in grain grading with a perfect score in Kansas City. She was second in grain grading in Chicago and fourth in identification in both contests.

Sam Knauss was an alternate in both contests, and he also posted a perfect score in grain grading in Kansas City. Tyler Herrs and Ben Coomes competed in Kansas City.

The team was coached by Kevin Donnelly, K-State professor of agronomy. Assistant coach was Hannah Christen, senior in agronomy from Oregon, IL, who was a member of the 2012 team.

In the contests, participants are required to identify 200 different plant or seed samples of crops and weeds; grade eight different samples of grain according to Federal Grain Inspection Service standards; and analyze ten seed samples to determine what contaminants they contain.

The American Royal assumed leadership of the Kansas City contest this year, with CHS Foundation as the primary sponsor. Additional sponsors were the American Society of Agronomy, DuPont Pioneer, and the South Dakota Crop Improvement Association.

The primary sponsor of the Chicago contest this year was the CME Group. In addition, donors in Chicago included the Crop Science Society of America, Growmark Cooperative, and the Society of Commercial Seed Technologists.

For its performance, K-State received a team scholarship award from contest sponsors at Kansas City, and CME Group provided individual scholarships to the top five students at Chicago.

Locally, sponsors for the K-State Crops Team include the Kansas Crop Improvement Association, Department of Agronomy, and the K-State Student Government Association.

Source: Kevin Donnelly, 785-532-5402, kjd@k-state.edu
Written by: Steve Watson, 785-532-7105, swatson@k-state.edu


Photo Caption

K-State 2013 Collegiate Crops Team (l to r): Nathan Larson, Sam Knauss, Morgan Halderson, Ben Coomes, Jeri Sigle, Tyler Herrs, Hannah Christen (Asst. Coach), Dr. Kevin Donnelly (Coach)

(updated 12/11/13)


Kirkham receives Higuchi-KU Endowment Research Achievement Award

M.B. Kirkham wins awardAmerican Society of Agronomy member Mary Beth Kirkham receives the Higuchi-KU Endowment Research Achievement Award from Bernadette Gray-Little, chancellor of the University of Kansas. Read more...

(updated 11/05/13)


K-State will lead effort to develop climate-resilient wheat

Jesse Poland
Researchers from K-State, CIMMYT, Cornell and USDA to Collaborate on Feed the Future Project
Kansas State University h
as been chosen to lead a new effort focused on developing wheat varieties that are resilient to the warming effects of climate change. The initial focus will be on wheat in South Asia, which typically produces 20 percent of the world’s wheat crop. Poland will lead the team, which includes researchers from K-State, the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Cornell University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Read more...

Photo Caption

Kansas State University adjunct assistant professor Jesse Poland will lead an international team of researchers on a five-year project focused on developing climate resilient wheat. Poland is a research geneticist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

(updated 11/05/13)