Zachary Sanders


Name: Zachary Sanders

Hometown: Perry, Georgia

Year in School: Graduate Student

Expected Graduation: December, 2017

Degree Objective: M.S. - Crop and Soil Sciences

In his own words ...

Research Summary: I study corn production in a white clover living mulch system. We are trying to use a systematic approach to identify optimal agronomic practices to achieve high corn yields while still maintaining the white clover from one year to the next. We're also trying to quantify the effect of using a living mulch system on a producer's irrigation needs, and the water use efficiency of the living mulch system.  The answers to these questions and others could help lead to an economically efficient and environmentally-friendly corn production system. 

Why did you choose UGA? It's a family tradition really. My father, and all of my aunts and uncles on his side of the family, attended the university during their college careers. Once I finished my bachelor's degree in 2014 I started working in Dr. Nick Hill's lab. After I saw a season of the research he was doing, I was convinced that this would be an excellent project to be involved with so I began working toward my M.S. in the spring of 2015.

Why did you choose Crop and Soil Sciences? I felt like it was a great blend of disciplines that I'm interested in: biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics, and the career options wouldn't require me to spend all of my time in a lab or at a desk. 

My favorite things to do on campus are: I really enjoy going to football games in the fall, and lately I've attended several of the "Ice Dawgs" hockey games which are a lot of fun too. We're also fortunate enough to have a graduate student association, AGSA, which I've been heavily involved with over the past two years.

After graduation, I plan to: I would like to get a position at a seed company or an environmental consulting firm, or work for the extension service. However, I haven't ruled out the possibility of pursuing a PhD. 

University highlights, achievements and awards:

  • CAES Outstanding Senior - Water and Soil resources (2013)
  • National Collegiate Soil Judging Contest 10th place individual (2014)
  • Southern Branch American Society of Agronomy 2nd place oral presentation (2015)
  • Agronomy Graduate Student Association (AGSA) President 2016-2017