Mark Watson

Spring 2020, Outstanding Senior


Degree: Bachelor of Science


  • Plant Breeding & Biotechnology
  • Plant Biology
  • Plant and Soil Sciences, Agronomic Science Concentration


  • Genetics
  • Spanish

Graduation Honors: Summa Cum Laude

How are you planning to use your degree?

I’m pursuing a career in international agricultural development, wherever that will take me. For now, I’m finishing up a research project on tomato grafting with professor Ricardo Hernández, then moving on to study plant breeding through a Master’s degree.

List clubs and activities while in school.

  • Horticulture Club
  • Providence College Ministry
  • Research Pack Abroad
  • University Honors Program
  • Vertical Farms Club

Whom do you want to thank?

You! Really, if you’ve found this page, it’s probably the case you’ve impacted my life during these undergrad years. But, to be more specific…

My family, for your unconditional love and support.

Research Pack Abroad staff – José, and Adrienne – thank you for creating the most impactful 3 months of my undergraduate career. I still can’t believe you kept the Peru program going for just one interested student.

The Controlled Environments lab people – Ricardo, Brandon, Cristian, John, and Clint – you welcomed me into your team and have defined, in many ways, what I love about research, work, and horticulture. Thanks to you, I’ll always be a PAR Ranger.

Vertical Farms Club folks – Partin, Jeremy, Annette, Fulton, Matthew, Brock, Lane, Brenda, and the rest of you – thank you for your friendship. You impressed me and humbled me every week with your hard work, curiosity, and knowledge. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that, without you, everything would have dramatically exploded and gone down in flames. Now I’m excited to see how you create the future of the club.

Dr. Kraus and Isaac – thank you for making Kilgore Hall my favorite place on campus. Even though I joined horticulture later on and kept taking classes outside of Kilgore, you made Kilgore feel like home with your constant open doors.

What is the best thing about studying horticulture at NC State?

The people ↑. The professors and students I mentioned above and the many others I’d run out of room to mention make NC State Horticulture the community that it is, not to mention how incredibly smart and connected to the horticulture community (NC and global) they are.


Advisor Comments (Helen Kraus):

Mark is a quiet young man with a real passion for the science of Horticulture and the impact that it can have on a person’s life and well-being.  Never one to back down from a challenge, as evident by his the three Bachelors of Science and two minors he is receiving, Mark went to Peru to study abroad and conduct research at the Centro Internacional de la Papa (CIP) or International Potato Center. This opportunity gave Mark both lab and field research experiences as well as a whole host of cultural and life experiences. Mark has also been very active in clubs and research on campus. Without a doubt, Mark will achieve the goals he sets for himself.














Leave Comments for Graduate

  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Mark Watson