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College of Agriculture

10 Students Represent Chico State at Annual Plant and Soil Conference

Announced on: Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019

Ten agriculture students from California State University, Chico traveled to Fresno to attend the American Society of Agronomy California Chapter’s Plant and Soil Conference on February 5-6, 2019. Among these students, Miriam Pacheco and Chloe Dugger were awarded first place in the poster presentation symposium, and Amanda Cox earned third place. In addition, Aaron Alvarez was one of two students awarded the California Chapter of Agronomy Scholarship.

Students who attended the Plant and Soil Conference had the opportunity to attend workshops, agriculture policy discussions, and research symposiums, and listen to industry professionals’ speeches.

Cox, Dugger and Pacheco all served as presenters in the research poster competition where they presented on their ongoing research trials. Dugger and Pacheco’s poster described a research project completed during the summer of 2018 in a field trial at the University Farm. Titled “The Effects of Water Stress Preconditioning on Heat and Drought Tolerance of Corn in Northern California,” the team studied whether drought stress at a plant’s young age could enhance its drought tolerance during flowering and grain filling. Cox presented a poster on her research titled, “The Effect of Salinity on Nitrogen Acquisition and Biological Nitrogen Fixation of Alfalfa,” where she used potted alfalfa plants to study the impacts of various salinity solutions and fertilizer levels on the plants’ nitrogen fixation.

“This was our second time presenting these research projects, and it’s such a great experience to talk about all of the work we put in and the experience we gained. The conference was a great experience,” Dugger said.

After completing a rigorous application and essay, Alvarez was awarded a scholarship of $1,500 by the California Chapter of Agronomy for his dedication to his studies pursuing a degree in crops, horticulture, and land resource management.

The group of students was led by plant science faculty Ana Medic and Professor Hossein Zakeri.