Fereshteh Shahoveisi to Join PSLA as the New Turfgrass Pathologist

24 Feb 2022 4:53 AM | Ben Ellis (Administrator)

The University of Maryland has officially announced the long awaited Turfgrass Pathologist for the Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture. 

Following is the official announcement to the University and industry professionals from Professor and Chair, Dr. John Erwin.

Thank you for everyone involved in this processes as I am sure we are excited to see what the future will hold for the Turfgrass Industry. 

Fereshteh Shahoveisi to Join PSLA as the New Turfgrass Pathologist

Dr. Shahoveisi will be joining our department by May 1.  She will be accompanied by her husband, Seyedali Hosseinirad.  Seyedali is currently finishing his PhD at NDSU in wheat breeding and will be joining Dr. VJ Tiwari’s research program in our department as a postdoc after graduation.

Dr. Shahoveisi is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Plant Pathology at North Dakota State University (NDSU).  She received her Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in Plant Pathology from Tehran University and her PhD in Plant Pathology from NDSU.  She also holds a College Teaching Certificate.  Her thesis title was “Characterizing genetics of host resistance to Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and epidemiology of the disease in Brassica napus L.”  In addition to her strong plant pathology background, she brings unique expertise in epidemiology statistics and nematology to our department. She has taught coursework in both Plant Pathology and Plant Disease Epidemiology. She has published in several refereed scientific journals, written extension bulletins, and has given numerous scientific and extension presentations.  She has worked on various issues in plant pathology across a wide range of plant species, including grasses, on different continents.

Other areas of expertise/areas of interest Dr. Shahoveisi has include a) statistical analyses (using multiple software including R and SAS), b) conducting Verticillium wilt disease field trials for NDSU and companies such as Bayer and Syngenta including field map proofing, assessment of temporal disease progress, processing the samples, conducting qPCR assays, and statistical analyses, c) analyzing sequencing data and conducting genetic (QTL) mapping studies including GWAS and bi-parental mapping, d) conducting population genetic analyses on black dot disease of potato to study the emergence and adaptation of the pathogen in different continents, and evaluating the application of image processing and deep learning in the detection of plant diseases using rust disease as a model, and e) advising the scientific team of SafteySpect Inc. in plant disease management practices and co-investigator in SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) Phase I proposals to study the application of UVB and UVC lights along with machine learning algorithms (CSI-Dtechnology) in the detection and management of plant diseases. 

The great work of the Turfgrass Pathology Search Committee needs to be acknowledged.  They did an exceptional job attracting a number of great candidates, organizing a search process and presenting a thorough evaluation of candidates and summation of input that they received.  Thanks to all those that participated in the department.  

I would also like to thank the Dean for approving the refilling of this position and participating in the search process (as well as the Associate Deans).  The Turfgrass industries also need to be acknowledged for their longstanding support of UMD and their participation in the search process.  I am sure Fereshteh will be a welcome addition to the turfgrass team.

John Erwin

Professor and Chair

Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture

(We grow the food you eat and design the landscapes we live in.)

University of Maryland - College Park

The Maryland Turfgrass Council      P.O. Box 389, St. Michaels, MD 21663   Phone: (443) 742-6618       

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