Prospective Students

Graduate Student Information

Study entomology, plant pathology, abiotic plant stress, or weed science in natural or agricultural ecosystems. Graduate students studying with faculty in Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management perform research on questions ranging from the ecology of plant and insect invasions to molecular plant-microbe interactions. Our students may work in greenhouse or row crop production systems, on rangelands, on short grass prairies or in alpine meadows. The breadth of our department means that students gain knowledge, experience, and appreciation for fundamental and applied biology in many environments.

Collaborate with university, state, federal, and industry scientists. For their research projects, our students may collaborate with scientists in start-up companies, in established companies (many started by our own alumni), or with scientists who work for multi-national corporations. They may also work with scientists in non-governmental organizations, including with CGIAR scientists. Graduate students in our department also have opportunities to work with colleagues in the many federal and state agencies located in or near Fort Collins. This includes the Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA), the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service (USDA, ARS) or the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA, APHIS), the state and federal Forest Services (USFS), the United States Geological Survey (USGS), or the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Become the scientist you want to be. Our graduate students go on to many exciting careers in agricultural sciences. Recent graduates from our department are now business owners, faculty at other universities, USDA or USFS scientists, laboratory managers, employees, scientists at companies such as Bayer, and extension agents.

Graduate Programs

We offer M. S. and Ph.D. degrees in Bioagricultural Sciences. Graduate students at the masters and Ph.D. level can obtain a general degree in  the area of expertise of their advisor (e.g., ecology, biodiversity,  molecular biology), or explicitly concentrate on one of three  disciplinary specializations: Entomology, Plant Pathology, and Weed Science.

Financial Aid

Fellowships – Prospective graduate students may apply for USDA, NSF, NIFA, or EPA fellowships with assistance from their faculty mentor.

Research Assistantships – These typically are supported by competitive grant funds awarded to the faculty member and fund research on a specific project.  Contact individual faculty regarding  the availability of research assistantships.

Teaching Assistantships – Teaching assistantships in introductory biology and advanced undergrad biology courses offered in our department are available each fall and spring. Apply by September 1 for  spring semester admission and by January 15 for fall semester  admission to be considered for teaching assistantships. Please see our Graduate Student Assistantships page for more information.

Admission

To be admitted as a graduate student in our department, you must demonstrate that you have the potential to succeed in graduate school. You can show this through grades, letters of recommendation, and your application essay. For admission, we want to learn about your interest and background in science, why you want to study in our department, and your career plans.

For admission, you must also find a faculty advisor who is willing to mentor you.  Visit BSPM’s faculty webpage to learn about our faculty members and their research areas. We advise that you directly contact faculty members whom would like to work with by email to learn if they are currently recruiting graduate students prior to applying to our department.

Application deadlines:  To be considered for financial support via teaching assistantships, you must apply by September 1 for spring semester admission and by January 15 for fall semester admission.

Applications must include:

  1. College transcripts. An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 is required for admission.
  2. Three letters of recommendation. Choose people who know you well and can comment on your abilities and your potential for success in graduate school.
  3. A short essay outlining your experience and career goals. This should be 1 page or less. Describe your specific interests to aid us in finding potential faculty advisors who are appropriate. Identify who you would like to work with in your essay if applicable.
  4. If your undergraduate degree is from a non-US institution and the official language of your country is not English, then you must have TOEFL scores of 550 or above for admission.
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