The College of Agricultural Sciences at Oregon State University is Oregon's principal source of knowledge relating to agricultural and food systems, and a major source of knowledge regarding environmental quality, natural resources, life sciences, and rural economies and communities worldwide. The College provides undergraduate and graduate education leading to baccalaureate and graduate degrees, and extended education programs throughout Oregon and beyond. Its research programs create knowledge to solve problems and to build a knowledge base for the future. It is a source of information and expertise in integrating and applying knowledge with benefits that are felt in domestic and international settings.
As we celebrate the 125th year of Oregon’s Agricultural Experiment Station, I think about how our college is helping to shape research, education, and outreach for the 21st century.
For example, because we can access and deliver a vast amount of information electronically, our education increasingly emphasizes hands-on learning through experience. We listen when employers say they want graduates with skills in communication and teamwork that complement a strong foundation of disciplinary science. A degree from the College of Agricultural Sciences means knowing how to analyze information, discover new knowledge and how to apply it toward solving real-world problems.
Research has become more collaborative, as society’s challenges have become too complex for a single scientist or a single discipline to tackle. Increasingly, scientists in the College of Agricultural Sciences lead research teams made up of representatives from various agencies, universities, and communities. The college is a leader in convening diverse groups for the purpose of solving problems, as well as a trusted source of relevant, research-based knowledge.
Although face-to-face Extension outreach will always be part of the culture, new technologies have made it possible to engage many more people in research and education. For example, information and learning materials are now accessible by mobile phones and tablets, so access to the College of Ag Sciences is possible whenever and wherever you choose.
These are just of the few ways we continue to address our three-part mission in new, innovative ways. That’s why we say, “Get to know the College of Agricultural Sciences. You’ll be surprised by how much you can learn.”