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Plant Pathology

Department of Plant Pathology



We offer two majors, Plant Pathology and Plant Health Management, a Plant Pathology minor, general education and introductory courses, internships and undergraduate research opportunities.

> Compare the two majors          > Explore Undergraduate Programs

You may be wondering, “What is a plant pathologist, and what do they do?”
In short, plant pathologists study plant diseases and plant health, and develop disease management strategies. Here are some ways to explore . . .

1. Talk to scientists.

Ask, "What do you do, and why is it important?"  Find out how we chose our careers - the answers may surprise you.  Inquire about job shadow opportunities.  We'll put you in touch with students, faculty and staff who love to share their passion! > Read more

2.  Take a course or attend a seminar.

Many scientists were inspired by a course or seminar.  Check out general education or elective courses in plant pathology, entomology, plant sciences and agriculture.  None available at your school?  There are plenty of opportunities online.

> General Education and Introductory Courses (Ohio State)
> Online Courses

Many seminars at universities are free and open to the public, and some can even be viewed online.  Check out department, university and other websites for events and seminars.  Plant Pathology seminars are free and held Tuesdays, 4:10 - 5:05 pm in Columbus and Wooster > View semiinar schedule

3. Find a part-time job or volunteer.

There’s nothing like on-the-job training.  Employers include garden centers, nurseries, farms, landscape businesses, research laboratories and government agencies.  Many universities and businesses offer internships or part-time student jobs.  Offer to volunteer – the experience is invaluable, and it may open the door to paid employment.

4. Dig in!  Do plant-related projects for science fair, 4-H or school.

Try some projects from the Plants Get Sick Too! Plant Diseases Idea Starter.

Visit a library and check out some books.  If you're looking for inspiration, look up Norman Borlaug – the plant pathologist, agronomist and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate whose groundbreaking achievements in the development of disease-resistant wheat varieties pioneered the Green Revolution > Norman Borlaug's Biography

5. Explore websites.

♦ Science Careers (from the journal Science) >
♦ Ohio State – Master in Plant Health Management >
♦ The Coalition for a Sustainable Agricultural Workforce >
♦ Careers in Plant Pathology >

6.  Enjoy the journey.

You may be unsure about your career path at this point, but that’s ok.  The choices are many, and the possibilities are endless.