Learning Beyond the Classroom

On-Campus Opportunities

Horticulture Society
Horticulture Society is an undergraduate student organization affiliated with the American Society for Horticultural Science. The group annually attends the Mid-America Collegiate Horticulture Society Conference where 15 different state chapters affiliated with ASHS meet for horticulture professional development. View the UWRF Horticulture Society 2011 Annual Report.

Additional involvement includes:

  • Guest speakers
  • Development of professional networks
  • Local, regional, national trips to visit horticultural industries
  • Plant sales
  • Leadership development
  • Community service

Pi Alpha Xi
Pi Alpha Xi is the National Honor Society for Horticulture. Students with junior standing and a GPA of 3.0 or greater are invited to join.Pi Alpha Xi members wear Nile green and cerulean blue cords at graduation in recognition of their academic achievement. The organization promotes scholarship, ethical standards and fellowship among horticulturists in addition to educating others about horticulture. The UWRF chapter sponsors an annual scholarship for a UWRF student majoring in horticulture.

International Opportunities

UWRF provides numerous opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in abroad programs and study tours lasting one week to one semester. Horticulture faculty encourage student participation and assist students in planning international experiences that match career goals and academic requirements.

Students have eagerly responded, resulting in professional, personal, educational and cultural life enhancing experiences.

Meet Mallory!

Mallory Westlund
Senior, Horticulture, Landscape emphasis

MalloryWestlund_ShoppingMallRooftop_Playground_webIn fall 2013, I spent an amazing semester studying abroad in Europe. For more than three months I traveled to sites, met up with professionals in my area of interest, and explored a continent all on my own. How? Through Semester Abroad Europe!  There, I was allowed to choose a research topic close to my interests - mine was horticulture - and I was given the freedom to go where I thought I could learn the most. Whether I was visiting sites in Switzerland, or meeting up with internationally-respected minds in their own hometowns in Germany, I controlled my itinerary.

The topic of my choice was green roofs with a public access. I saw parks and playgrounds on top of shopping malls (Yes, the playground above is on top of a shopping mall in Germany) and meadows on the roofs of museums. Boys in Copenhagen, Denmark, skateboarded on underground garages and trees grew on rooftops. Roofs, I found, are an extremely underused commodity. They have great potential in bringing plants back into our cities along with other numerous side benefits.

While in Europe I learned a lot about green roofs and have gained a great deal of confidence when discussing them. They are still new idea that is constantly being improved upon. Because of this, the academic professionals I met at the World Green Roof Conference encouraged me to question the norms and try out new theories and experiments. In coming summers, I plan on building a green roof at my parent’s home using a new strategy and I have been asked to send all the data concerning it to a professional in England with seasonal or yearly updates.

MalloryWestlund_ShoppingMallRooftop_Garden_webBesides my academic confidence, my confidence as a person greatly increased. Through the Semester Abroad Europe program, I was able to gain valuable experience in contacting professionals in my field of interest, communicating despite a language barrier, and trusting in myself to navigate regions that are foreign to me. In a word, independence. I also gained professional and personal contacts from all over the world. The experience provided from my semester abroad is priceless and I encourage every student to take the initiative to go out into the world and learn more about what inspires them!

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Plant and Earth Science
324 Agricultural Science
611 S. 3rd St.
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