Ariane McCorquodale

  • Dr. Brianne Reeves

    Featured in the DPM Summer 2018 Newsletter

    Q: Why did you choose to enroll in the DPM program?
    Upon finishing my undergraduate degree in Agronomy Plant Science, I knew that I wanted to pursue even higher education. Looking at the options of a masters, PhD, or the DPM program I knew that the DPM program was the one for me. It is a unique multidisciplinary option to further broaden my knowledge on topics that affect how plants grow. I knew that the DPM program would make me very marketable for a diverse career in agriculture. Continue Reading →

  • Summer Internship with Arborjet – By Ariane McCorquodale

    Featured in the DPM Summer 2018 Newsletter

    During the summer of 2018, I had the opportunity to intern with Arborjet, a plant health care company that specializes in tree injection systems and tree pest management. The internship offered me a great chance to put my DPM skills to the test. I did bioassays on arthropod pests, plant pathogens, and soil organisms. I was given the freedom to design experiments, conduct my own data analyses, and make recommendations from those results. I was able to practice pathogen isolation and identification, and I got to work with some insects we don’t get in Florida, such as Japanese beetles (Popillia japonica).

    This internship also provided good exposure to how pest management research is driven in the private sector. Sales are what provides the funding to develop new products, so there is a lot of collaboration with marketing to make sure that whatever is being developed is something that consumers will want to buy. I got to see the development process for new pesticide formulations and learned a little about how regulations affect product labeling. Though there are many large pest management companies with great internship programs, I am very grateful that my internship was with a smaller company as I was exposed to all aspects of the product life cycle and I was able to meet and learn from people acting in a variety of roles.

  • Richard Miranda

    Featured in the DPM Summer 2018 Newsletter

    Richard Miranda is a member of the DPM External Advisory Committee.

    Richard Miranda is the Florida State Plant Health Director (SPHD) for Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) within the USDA-APHIS. PPQ spans the entire United States, with Directors in each state working to safeguard agricultural and natural resources. In Florida, PPQ is a team of 340 employees. There are four regional areas throughout the state, and two statewide programs (the Citrus Health Rresponse Program and the Fruit Fly Exclusion and Detection Program). The Area and Program directors report directly to the SPHD. Continue Reading →

  • Dr. Lacey Mount

    Featured in: DPM Spring 2018 Newsletter

    Q: Why did you choose to enroll in the DPM program?
    A: I was always fascinated by plants, their physiology, disorders and diseases. Research can be quite absorbing, but what I enjoy is a career built around symptoms and diagnostics.

    Q: What is your current occupation, and how has your DPM degree aided you in the tasks and responsibilities as sociated with your position?
    A: Currently I am a consultant at Dellavalle Laboratory, Inc. We are located in the heart of California agriculture. In season (February-October), on any given day I may get called to look at symptoms on virtually any temperate or Mediterranean crop you can name: cotton, corn, tomatoes, alfalfa, citrus, almonds, grapes, stonefruit, or walnuts to list the most common ones.
    There is plenty of routine crop health to sustain the business in terms of plant nutrition sampling and recommendations. I diagnose damage from salts and other abiotic disorders, nematodes, diseases, herbicide drift and occasionally insects. There is a whole separate industry for pesticide recommendations here. I get called when farmers and pest control advisors (PCAs) see symptoms they can’t understand or identify. It sounds like the description of a Doctor of Plant Medicine, doesn’t it? Continue Reading →

  • Internship with USDA-APHIS-PPQ – By Cory Penca

    Featured: DPM Spring 2018 Newsletter

    I am a pathways intern at the USDA-APHIS-PPQ office in Gainesville. I began this internship in June 2017, and since then I have had a chance to learn about PPQ-Florida’s operations and the overall structure and culture of working in a federal agency. I have shadowed citrus health response personnel and fruit fly trappers in the Tampa area, attended a review of CBP port inspections in West Palm Beach and Fort Pierce, and traveled to Raleigh, NC to visit the Center for Plant Health Science and Technology and the Plant Epidemiology and Risk Analysis Laboratory.
    I’ve also worked on some very interesting projects, including a study of cruise ship gardens as a pathway for the introduction of exotic pests. I am currently finishing up a case study on the recent outbreak of the Mediterranean fruit fly in the Dominican Republic, and my findings will be used to help support the use of trapping and pest surveillance to reduce the threat of such a large and expensive outbreak occurring again.
    My experience as a DPM student has parlayed well into my internship. The mission of USDA-APHIS-PPQ is to protect American agriculture from exotic pests of all types, and an interdisciplinary perspective is required to achieve this goal.

  • Dr. Gregory MacDonald

    Featured in: DPM Spring 2018 Newsletter

    Dr. Gregory MacDonald is a Professor of Weed Science and Agronomy at the University of Florida. He first started at UF 20 years ago with a 70% research and 30% teaching appointment. Over the course of his time at UF, his appointment has shifted to 70% teaching and 30% research.
    Dr. MacDonald is originally from upstate New York. He received an Associate’s degree in Agricultural Engineering at Alfred State College. He completed a Bachelor’s degree at Cornell University in Plant Sciences with a focus on vegetable crop production. His Master’s and PhD programs were completed at UF in weed science. As Master’s student, Dr. MacDonald researched row crop weed science, and as a PhD student he focused on invasive plant management. Before starting as a faculty member at UF, Dr. MacDonald was an Assistant Professor at the University of Georgia with a 100% extension appointment. He managed over 20 commodities, including several fruits, vegetables, corn, cotton, and sorghum. He worked with extension agents across the state and gave 20-80 extension presentations every year. Continue Reading →

  • Dr. Tesfamariam Mengistu

    Featured in: DPM Fall 2017 Newsletter

    Dr. Mengistu has since moved to another position, you can read about his contributions the DPM program and students in the archived highlight below.

    Dr. Tesfamariam Mengistu is an Assistant Professor of Nematology in the UF Entomology and Nematology Department with a 45% extension, 30% teaching, and 25% research appointment. He also serves as the Director of the UF Nematode Diagnostic and Assay Laboratory on campus.

    Dr. Mengistu received his B.S. in Plant Sciences from Alemaya University, Ethiopia, his M.S. in Nematology from the University of Ghent, Belgium, and his PhD in Soil Ecosystem Phytopathology and Nematology from the University of Bonn in Germany. Before coming to UF, Dr. Mengistu worked as a Plant Pathologist and Nematologist at the National Plant Protection Research Institute in Ethiopa and as a Post Doc at the University of Illinois working on research focused on nematodes that infect plants grown for bioenergy crops. Continue Reading →

  • Dr. Rebecca Barocco

    Featured in: DPM Fall 2017 Newsletter

    Q: Describe your academic background?
    A: I obtained a BS degree in Horticulture at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville in the fall of 2009. After graduating, I spent some time in the plant pathology department in Arkansas and then worked on a small CSA farm before deciding to pursue the DPM program from 2012-2016.

    Q: What is your current occupation and how has your DPM degree aid-ed you in the tasks and responsibilities associated with your position?
    A: My current position is a Post-doctoral Associate in plant pathology at the UF/IFAS NFREC in Quincy, FL. I am part of the agronomy and plant pathology team working on carinata and peanut research. One of our current projects is to develop high-throughput phenotyping methods using imagery and computer vision. This data combined with other agronomic and disease management trials will ideally discover the best cultivars and management strategies for growing carinata in the Southeast. The imagery techniques we develop for carinata will be then be translated for use in peanut research in the summer. Because the DPM program is integrated across a variety of fields in applied crop science, it was a great preparation for my current position. Although I am technically in the plant pathology department, I am part of a cross-discipline team in field research. The DPM program also allowed me to take a variety of electives in GIS, precision agriculture, and Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), which are directly relevant to my current position. Continue Reading →

  • Spring Internship with Glades Crop Care – By Kayla Thomason

    Featured: DPM Spring 2017 Newsletter

    This Spring I had the opportunity to intern with Glades Crop Care in Jupiter, FL with Madeline and Charlie Mellinger. Working with a team of trained scouts and crop consultants, I learned how to identify many insect and disease pests in sweet corn, cabbage, green beans, tomatoes, radishes, and potatoes. Sweet corn was the crop I spent the most time scouting during my internship. This internship has helped me take the technical information that I’ve learned in classes, apply it to field settings, and pinpoint problems that growers were facing. My internship was extremely valuable and has contributed to my knowledge base.

  • Internship with FDACS DPI – By Nicole Casuso

    Featured: DPM Spring 2017 Newsletter

    During my internship with the Technical Assistance Department at DPI, I was granted the creative freedom to develop a innovative, visual, and interactive displays that represented the Division at the Florida State Fair held in Tampa, FL in February 2017. Celebrating the theme, DPI: 100 Years of Protecting Florida’s Plant and Apiary Industry, the Division’s presence was going to be larger than previous years and stand as the central feature in the Ag Exhibit Hall at the fairgrounds. As an adoring fan of museums and creative, hands-on education tactics, I dove into the vastness of the internet and utilized personal experiences to draft many ideas for the state fair exhibit. We wanted the DPI exhibit to tell a story and highlight the importance of the Division for audiences of all ages and professional backgrounds.

    I designed the overall exhibit layout as well as several key display items with assistance from my coworkers in TA and staff from the Division’s five technical Bureaus (Plant and Apiary Inspection; Entomology, Nematology, and Plant Pathology [includes Botany]; Methods Development and Biological Con-trol; Citrus Budwood Registration; and Pest Eradication and Control). Continue Reading →