About our College

A founding college of the University, we have a long tradition of excellence in teaching, research and engagement programs that benefit the health and economic vitality of Nevada. We offer programs in:

  • agriculture, horticulture, rangeland & veterinary sciences
  • biochemistry & molecular biology
  • children, youth & families
  • community & economic development
  • health & nutrition
  • natural resources & environmental science

Honoring the Best

Digital awards celebration of College faculty, staff and students

College of Agriculture, Biotechnology & Natural Resources

Two award recipients at 2018 ceremony posing with Honer the Best photoHonor the Best celebration provides the opportunity to recognize the amazing accomplishments of the College's students, employees and supporters. Photo by College.

I am especially pleased to honor our academic achievements along with our Experiment Station and Extension research and engagement accomplishments, some of which are highlighted below. Together, we are meeting the challenges of COVID-19 by pivoting our classes, offering childcare, donating supplies, helping Nevadans offering online education and resources, and more. And, together, we also will meet tomorrow's challenges with our quality teaching, research and engagement programs.

Congratulations to our graduates, to our employees whose work this past year has grown a stronger Nevada, and to our awardees. Your outstanding performance has brought credit not only to your departments and units, but also to our College and University.

I sincerely thank you all for your dedication, support and commitment to excellence, and hope you enjoy your celebration.

William A. Payne, Dean of the College

"I am especially pleased to honor our academic achievements along with our Experiment Station and Extension research and engagement accomplishments."

-Bill Payne


College's Mozart Fonseca receives Regents Rising Researcher Award

Brings beef cattle production expertise to teaching, research and outreach in Nevada

Mike Wolterbeek

Mozart Fonseca lectures class at Main Station FarmIf Mozart Fonsseca wasn’t busy enough with research, his incessant energy keeps him going to teach a number of graduate and undergraduate courses. Photo by the College.

Mozart Fonseca has received a distinguished Regents’ Rising Researchers award for 2020. He is an assistant professor of beef cattle production and applied modeling in the College's Agriculture, Veterinary & Rangeland Sciences Department.

“I feel very grateful and fortunate to receive this prestigious recognition,” he said. “It represents a story of innumerous hours of hard work, dedication, collaboration, friendship, mentoring and commitment to fulfill our mission within the state of Nevada.”

Fonseca came to the College almost four years ago. Since then he’s been busy with research, teaching and outreach – and building and developing his lab.

“[This award] represents a story of innumerous hours of hard work, dedication, collaboration, friendship, mentoring and commitment to fulfill our mission within the state of Nevada.”

-Mozart Fonseca


Program coordinator aims to enhance impact of Extension programs

Jeantyl Norze is developing tools to monitor program goals and accomplishments

Hannah Alfaro

Jeantyl NorseJeantyl Norze is working with 4-H Youth Development to monitor high school graduation rates among participating youth. Photo by Cindi Kay Morehead, Extension.

Jeantyl Norze has joined Extension in Clark County as the coordinator for program evaluation.

Currently, Norze is evaluating the impact that COVID-19 is having on several Extension programs, including Nevada 4-H Youth Development and children, youth and families programming. Since most of Extension’s programs were forced to transition to an online environment, he has been actively monitoring and helping program coordinators meet their goals during this transition. Norze hopes analysis tools can monitor the impact the pandemic is having on program participants, and he’s ensuring instructors are trained to implement online coursework.

As evaluation coordinator, Norze’s role is to increase Extension’s evaluation outcomes by providing technical assistance and training to faculty and staff as needed. Before joining Extension, he taught program development and program evaluation at Louisiana State University for two years. Last March, he offered a presentation on program development and evaluation at a new faculty orientation.

“One of the reasons I was so excited to work with Extension was so I could make an impact on the lives of Nevadans."

-Jeantyl Norse


4-H Alumni Q&A: Reana Bye

Former Washoe County 4-H Youth Development participant

Reana Bye with 4-H studentsReana Bye has been volunteering at the 4-H Youth Development Camp Program in various leadership positions after attending the program as a youth. Photo by Reana Bye.

Question: As a youth, how did you participate in 4-H? What clubs, camps or activities were you involved in?

Answer: I was part of the Washoe County 4-H Program from the time I was 9 to my senior year. I did everything possible, but the biggest programs I participated in were the 4-H Horse Program and livestock – we raised market lambs. Apart from that, though, my mom started a sewing and crafting club for us, and I went to the 4-H camp up in Lake Tahoe as an actual camper, a teen and then as an adult chaperone. As I got older, I had the opportunity to go to 4-H Congress, and I ended up working at the state office while I was at the University.

Question: Looking back on your experiences in 4-H, what do you think you learned from these experiences that benefited you the most throughout your life?

Answer: 4-H, for me, gave me so much more than I ever could’ve imagined. There are very prominent goals that teach you citizenship and hard work and record-keeping. I think, along with that, were the families and people that we were surrounded with that made the biggest difference in my life. When you have people like Sarah Chvilicek or Joni Test, who give their whole lives to these youth, it gives you the opportunity to see what great leadership is like. I had the opportunity to be around people who really made me understand that no matter what I do in my life, I want to make sure I’m there for other kids and to ensure the continuation of these programs. When you’re learning the formal things like how to take care of your animals, it’s great, but it’s really the underlying messages of hard work, dedication and helping others that made it one of the most invaluable experiences of my life.

4-H is a community of young people across America learning leadership, citizenship and life skills

Members learn life skills, make new friends, enhance self-esteem, achieve personal goals, develop positive relationships with peers and volunteers, and have fun learning and sharing as a family and a club


Safety concerns for fresh produce increase during pandemic

Experiment Station's Desert Farming Initiative gives tips for ensuring produce safety during COVID-19 outbreak

Jill Moe

Crates of fresh produceThe Desert Farming Initiative is providing safety tips and information for producers and consumers of fresh produce. Photo by Jill Moe, Desert Farming Initiative.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, many consumers have been grappling with how to balance the need for fresh food with the risks posed by grocery shopping. An additional concern amid the virus, is the health and safety of the workers who grow and process these foods, and those who staff our grocery stores. Nevada’s farm workers have continued to grow produce and devise innovative new avenues to get it to our tables, and stores have taken unprecedented measures to safely stay open.

Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports there is no evidence that COVID-19 is being transmitted by packaging or fresh food, the people growing, selling and shopping for it do face considerable risks. Below is some key guidance for fruit and vegetable growers, as well as consumers, to reduce exposure to COVID-19 during this trying time. 

Grocery shopping and produce safety have been concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Desert Farming Initiative provides information to help producers and consumers minimize food-safety risks.

Growing a stronger Nevada

Our programs work together to make an impact

Our teaching, research and engagement programs are intertwined and complement one another. Faculty who teach on campus also conduct research as part of our Experiment Station, allowing students to learn about and participate in research. Extension faculty engaging with communities identify research needs, as well as join Experiment Station faculty to conduct research. Faculty on campus help to develop Extension programs in communities.

Researching critical issues Experiment Station faculty conduct research at experiment stations, labs and research facilities across the state, as well as teach classes and share and conduct research with students. The state-federal partnership tackles issues affecting Nevada's citizens, communities and economy.
student researcher with plants in greenhouse
Teaching University students We offer 17 undergraduate and graduate degrees to prepare students for high-paying, in-demand careers in agriculture, rangeland & veterinary sciences; biochemistry & molecular biology; natural resources & environmental science; and nutrition.
students taking notes in the field
Engaging Nevada communities Extension is engaged in Nevada communities, presenting research-based knowledge to address critical community needs. The county-state-federal partnership provides practical education to people, businesses and communities, fulfilling the University's land-grant mission.
parents with children

Want to help grow Nevada?

Consider making a contribution in support of classroom, lab or office space; graduate assistantships; student scholarships; or upgrades to the Nevada 4-H Camp. To learn more, please contact Mitch Klaich '02, director of development, at 775-682-6490.