After 41 years in Penn State, Kathleen Brown, Professor of Plant Science, retires Penn State University

University Park, Pa. Kathleen Brown, professor of plant stress biology at Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences, has had a profound impact on many students after completing a 41-year career that helped break new ground in biology. An important role in the field of plant science.

A.D. Employed in 1980, she worked as an assistant professor in post-production physiology before contributing to various fields of biology. In Penn State, she has published more than 100 peer-reviewed papers and has received more than $ 23 million in funding from the US Department of Energy and Agriculture, the National Science Foundation, the International Development Agency, and others. Sources.

According to Professor Erin Connoli, Professor of Plant Sciences, Brown has been involved in a number of important developments that have had a significant impact on agriculture.

“Undoubtedly, her research will continue to enable translation work that will lead to more sustainable and robust agricultural systems in the future,” Connoli said. “For example, some of your work includes a description of the architectural traits of drought tolerance and plant growth in low-nutrient soils.

Brown has been one of the most respected teachers in plant science, and Connoli points out that in addition to teaching post-harvest physiology for four decades, she is also very active in teaching postgraduate students. This includes course development and instruction for the Vegetable Graduation Program and the Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Plant Biology.

In addition, she has been the coordinator of the horticultural graduation program for 25 years, Connoli said. She was one of my favorite graduate counselors and taught 17 pH. Students, many of them have gone into successful careers in science.

Brown served as interim department head in 2016 at a crucial time for the Department of Plant Science, according to Connolly, and she also served as an assistant dean for postgraduate studies. “In addition, she has been an incredibly generous and considerate administrator for many years.” “This includes overseeing the integration of two postgraduate programs to establish a new PhD in Agricultural and Environmental Science. And a master’s degree program. ”

Brown served as the interim head of the Department of Plant Sciences in 2016.

When Jonathan Lynch, now a renowned professor of botanical science, came to Penn State in 1991, Braw’s research shifted to interest in the roots that could help plants get more phosphorus from poor soils. That has led to long-term and productive cooperation in response to poor soils, followed by other malnutrition and drought.

“I was eager to participate in this research because it is a relatively unconnected region in scientific research, and it has a great potential to have an impact on people’s living conditions and the sustainability of the agricultural environment,” Brown said. “In the early years, we usually made beans, which had a simple root system that was easy to translate. Later we started a similar study with corn and rice. ”

Looking back, Brown finds her education very satisfying, and she has a unique perspective.

“I love plants more, and I appreciate that there are whole rooms full of students who love plants,” she said. I taught 60 students in my post-production physiology class in the summer of 1981 and 80 for the second time. Since then, the numbers have gradually dropped to about 20-25 students per year.

Perhaps the most rewarding aspect of the coffee industry is the opportunity to work with talented and motivated graduates. Each had its own unique strengths and problems, she recalled, and many became more valuable over time.

“Jonathan Lynch and I have joined our laboratory teams, so I know all the students well and have served on most of their advisory committees,” she said. In each of these countries, Colombia, Mozambique, Denmark, Thailand, and China, we had many partnerships or private associations that attracted students to graduate work or research. When I met those students, I felt that I knew a little about these cultures.

She advises students or visiting scholars from Egypt, India, Korea, Sri Lanka, Greece and, of course, many Americans.

The big change in Brown’s career was the increase in women’s participation in STEM fields. When she arrived in Penn State 41 years ago, she was the only female member of the Faculty of Track at the time, and there were very few women in the faculty of the college.

“This has clearly changed,” he said. In the 1990s we organized faculty parties for the college, but now we have a lot to invite to the public housing.

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