In a significant collaborative effort, the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR) at Texas A&M University-Commerce has joined hands with Texas A&M AgriLife Research to establish a new faculty position focused on advancing the field of agronomy.
Dr. Grace Flusche Ogden has been appointed as the Assistant Professor of Agronomy and commenced her role on August 1. Her unique position is divided between A&M-Commerce, where she will deliver instructional courses and contribute to CASNR's research initiatives, and AgriLife Research, where she will collaborate with researchers across Texas to conduct vital field and greenhouse trials. These collaborative efforts aim to study agricultural trends and gather essential data to benefit farmers in rural northeast Texas.
Agronomy, as explained by the American Society of Agronomy, involves a comprehensive and integrated approach to agriculture. It encompasses crop and soil science as well as ecological considerations. Some key areas of research within agronomy include soil properties, interactions between soil and crops, nutrient requirements for crops, crop growth and development, and the impact of environmental factors on crops throughout their lifecycle.
Dr. Ogden, originally from Muskogee, Oklahoma, completed her bachelor's and doctoral degrees at Oklahoma State University and her master's at Texas Tech University, with a specialization in plant and soil sciences. Her expertise lies in weed science and soil science, particularly focusing on crops like corn, cotton, sorghum, soybean, and wheat. Her past research emphasized weed control strategies involving tillage and herbicides, while also highlighting soil health improvement. With this diverse background, Dr. Ogden is keen to use her experiences to tackle the challenges faced by local farmers and enhance crop production efficiency and quality.
"I am very excited to meet and work with our students," Dr. Ogden expressed. "One thing that has struck me in the limited time I have had meeting students and others on campus is their passion for this university."
Dr. Randy Harp, Dean of CASNR, commended Dr. Ogden's appointment and anticipated a fruitful partnership between A&M-Commerce and AgriLife Research. "This joint professorship reflects our commitment to impactful research in our region," said Harp. "We foresee this collaboration bridging the gap between urban and rural agriculture, providing timely data to rural producers."
Dr. G. Cliff Lamb, Director of A&M AgriLife Research, emphasized the agency's dedication to its mission through such partnerships. "This joint hire represents our agency's continuing commitment to strengthening Texas commodities while developing the next generation of research leaders," stated Lamb.
Dr. David Baltensperger, Professor and Head of the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences at Texas A&M University, lauded the appointment as an effective means of involving students in research. "Shared faculty positions allow us to engage students with cutting-edge research that is directed toward the success of Northeast Texas producers," Baltensperger noted. "This position's focus on weed science will address one of the biggest challenges facing regional producers."
The combined efforts of Texas A&M University-Commerce and AgriLife Research, facilitated by Dr. Ogden's appointment, are poised to bolster both agronomy education and research, ultimately benefiting the agricultural community of northeast Texas and beyond.
Learn more about Texas A&M AgriLife Research and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources at A&M-Commerce. For college admission advising, visit Behri.com.