Shaping The Future

guy in cornfield

In order to gain the maximum benefit from biotechnology, we must integrate it fully with traditional corn breeding, genetics and pathology. However, that alone isn't enough. Even the best tools are useless without skilled craftspeople.

guy tying red flags on corn

Graduates of the University of Illinois are those craftspeople-plant breeders, geneticists and pathologists trained in the latest technologies and ready to lead the industry into the next century. A 1995 survey indicated that at least 87 employees of hybrid corn companies-including 16 company owners, 14 research directors and 57 station managers or breeders-received part of their education at the University of Illinois.

What's more, the demand for skilled graduates will increase as the industry continues to explore new avenues of research and application. The integration of biotechnology with traditional breeding will require well-educated scientists with knowledge of both molecular genetics and field plot design. These scientists will be the Easts, Hopkins, Rhodes, Laughnans and Hookers of tomorrow.