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Graduate study in Cornell's School of Integrative Plant Science (SIPS):

There are five fields of graduate study within SIPS: (i) Horticulture, (ii) Plant Biology, (iii) Plant Breeding, (iv) Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology, and (v) Soil and Crop Sciences.
The SIPS Graduate Resource Page can help you:

  • Identify graduate fields and faculty research programs that match your interests
  • Decide whether an MS/PhD or MPS program is right for you

Information here focuses on graduate programs in the Field of Plant Pathology & Plant-Microbe Biology.

Welcome to the Field of Plant Pathology & Plant-Microbe Biology, which is managed by the Section of Plant Pathology & Plant-Microbe Biology in the School of Integrative Plant Sciences at Cornell University. From our beginnings as one of the first departments of plant pathology in the country, our tradition of excellence has centered on training graduate students for leadership in the field.  As a graduate student in our Section, you will be part of this extraordinary legacy.

We invite you to explore our three program concentrations

Or browse our faculty profiles to see where you would fit into our team.

Graduate Student Research Spotlight

Bill Weldon

Bill Weldon

My research is focused on Podosphaera macularis, the casual agent of powdery mildew of hops. I am primarily interested in understanding the epidemiological and ecological factors associated with the formation and dispersal of the ascigerous state of the fungus, termed chasmothecia. In order for this sexual spore to form, both mating types must be present and interacting. This is the case in all states east of the Rocky Mountains, including New York, but is not so in the Pacific Northwest where the majority of North American hops are grown. Chasmothecia production increases both the genetic recombination and overwintering capabilities of the fungus. Our studies aim to identify key environmental markers that promote initiation and dispersal of this spore so that it can then be controlled via chemical or cultural practices.