Message from the Dean | College of Agricultural Sciences | SIU

Southern Illinois University



Message from the Dean

Karen MiddenAgriculture was first taught on our campus in 1910 in the Biology Department by Renzo Muckelroy. By 1913, Professor Muckelroy was authorized by SINU (Southern Illinois Normal University) president Henry W. Shyrock to create an agriculture department. At that time, SINU was a teacher’s college and there was a need for teachers to be able to teach and understand elementary agriculture. The university became Southern Illinois University in 1947. Through the years, we continue to respond to the needs of our society and address critical issues through research, outreach and education.  I appreciate Professor Muckelroy for having the vision to establish agriculture and taking the effort to build the foundation that has of provided thousands of students an education to pursue valuable and rewarding careers in diverse opportunities in agriculture. There continues to be opportunities, responsibilities and enjoyable career paths in agriculture. In fact, today it is reported that there are more jobs in agriculture than there are students graduating. We need young people! I invite you to explore the many options in agriculture and share my vision with me.

My vision for the College of Agricultural Sciences is to provide opportunity and support to the agriculture community that serves the needs of society in rural and urban America while also serving global population through education, research and outreach; and to safeguard and sustain natural resources and systems through innovative best practices.

I liked the saying that one of our past dean’s, Gary Minish, used to say, “We are more than meets the eye”. This is so true. I welcome you to call or email me if you would like to visit our campus, our 2,000 acre farm or talk to one of our student agbassadors.


Phone 618 453-2469