Cornell is the top U.S. university in the field of Agriculture, Agriculture Operations and Related Sciences in the Wall Street Journal’s 2019 rankings, beating the programs of 116 other schools.
Cornell was also ranked ninth overall, coming in sixth among all Ivy League institutions — above Dartmouth and Columbia.
The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, which encompasses some of the first departments at C.U., is unique within the Ivy League as the only agricultural-focused college among Cornell and its peer institutions.
CALS community members shared their appreciation for the college with The Sun.
“This college is a place where you can bring together the most fundamental research and the most applied research and the interactions with citizens in the state to really do things that will make a difference to people’s lives beyond the college,” Prof. Margaret E. Smith, ’78, Ph.D. ’82, plant breeding and genetics, told The Sun.
One of the defining qualities of CALS is its extension program, which differentiates it from other colleges and universities.
“There are very few [colleges] where you can bring those talents and discoveries together with an entire system that connects us to the people of our state and engage our students in that interaction,” Smith said.
From being an undergraduate in CALS to becoming dean in 2010, CALS Dean Kathryn J. Boor ’80 has seen the impact of Cornell beyond Ithaca— which in turn, has impacted her world view.
“The faculty, staff and students in the college are passionate; they make me want to strive to be a better person,”said Boor. “I am an optimist, and that world-view has been supported and shaped by my time in CALS and at Cornell.”
Cornell and its extensions also surpass continental boundaries, Boor said.
“I will always remember the day I was walking down a mud path in the Kenyan bush back in the 1980s only to encounter a middle-aged man wearing a Cornell t-shirt,” Boor said. “When I asked him where he got the shirt, he said, ‘My son is studying agriculture at Cornell.’ Everywhere you go, there we are.”
“Cornell’s agricultural programs continually inspire generations of people who are passionate about agriculture and innovation,” said Kristina Fillipini ’18, former president of the CALS Dean’s Student Advisory Council.
“Whether Cornell’s agricultural programs contribute research, species hybridization, or innovative sustainable practices, there are endless opportunities for people of all experience levels to get involved,” she said.