Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Research

Through the Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Research, the of goal of agriculture research at TSU is to create and communicate new knowledge in the agricultural and environmental sciences.  Through our innovative research, we address the needs of humankind, focusing on finding solutions to challenges faced by socially and economically disadvantaged groups, and contributing to the prosperity of the citizens of Tennessee, the nation, and the world.  

Our faculty and staff have been educated and trained at many of the best institutions in the US and the world and dedicate themselves to improving the lives of others.  This group of individuals takes pride in partnering with USDA/NIFA and the State of Tennessee to advance agricultural and environmental knowledge in the high-priority NIFA areas to make a positive difference in our society.  

All of our research programs are designed to include experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, and all offer the opportunity for student employment.

Hands-on, Real-world Training


Research Leadership

The Institute for Agricultural and Environmental Research (IAgER) is the primary research enterprise in the College of Agriculture at TSU.  Direction and oversight of the IAgER is provided by Dr. Chandra Reddy, Dean and Director of Research/ Administrator of Extension and Dr. Fulya Baysal-Gurel, Associate Dean of Research.  

Faculty, students, and staff perform research in our network of laboratories in the Agriculutral Complex on the TSU Main Campus, plus at our three satellite Agricultural Research and Education Centers in Nashville, Ashland City, and McMinnville, Tennessee. 

Students taking data


Research Areas

Our scientists and students perform research in the following areas:

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Graduate Student Research Assistantships

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Research Funding

Faculty in the College of Agriculture are supported in their research and Extension activities with Land-grant funding from the USDA/NIFA and the State of Tennessee.

Faculty also pursue external competitive funding to support research and Extension efforts.  Funding is obtained from a variety of federal, state, and private sources.  A complete list of actively funded projects that are led by our faculty can be viewed here.

Students taking data


Research Facilities

Our state-of-the-art research facilities include over 52,000 sq.ft. of laboratory and office space on the TSU main campus and the Otis L. Floyd Nursery Research Center in McMinnville, Tennessee, plus over 400 acres of field research space. In addition to the College's facilities, our students and faculty also utilize the TSU Core Facilities, a new $2 million laboratory for scanning electron microscopy, flow cytometry, protenomics, and nano-technology research. 

More information about our Research and Education Centers can be found here.

A listing of some of our laboratory instrumentation and its uses is available here.

research center

Research Faculty

The research faculty in the College of Agriculture are highly trained and experts in their fields.  We employ over 35 PhD-level scientists to conduct research in areas such as animal science, environmental science, plant science, food science, agribusiness, and human sciences.  A directory of our research faculty and their areas areas of expertise is located here.



Research Focus Groups

Dr. Prabodh Illukpitiya, Leader
Dr. Kofi Britwum
Dr. Abdelaziz Lawani
Dr. Aditya Khanal
Dr. Doc Lap Tran
Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication
Dr. John Ricketts, Leader
Dr. Thomas Broyles
Dr. Latif Lighari
Dr. Alyssa Rockers

Animal Science
Dr. Richard Browning, Leader
Dr. Makonnen Lema
Dr. Pramir Maharjan
Dr. Samuel Nahashon
Dr. Yongming Sang
Children, Youth and Families
Dr. Margaret Machara
Ms. Akela Barnett (ELC director)

Fashion Merchandising and Product Development
Dr. LaPorchia Davis
Dr. Linda Gardner

Food and Nutritional Sciences
Dr. Veronica Oates
Ms. Sharon Suggs
Ms. Rita Fleming
Dr. Latasha Williams

Food Science
Dr. Fur-Chi Chen, Leader
Dr. Aliyar Fouladkhah
Dr. Gajender Aleti
Dr. Agnes Kilonzo-Nthenge
Dr. Ankit Patras
Dr. Brahmaiah Pendyala
Dr. Hongwei Si
Dr. Ying Wu

Natural Resources

Dr. Tom Byl, Leader
Dr. Clement Akumu
Dr. Reginald Archer
Dr. Yujuan Chen
Dr. Jason de Koff
Dr. Samuel Dennis
Dr. Jianwei Li
Dr. Sarah Neuman
Dr. Bharat Pokharel
Dr. Sudipta Rakshit
Dr. William Sutton
Dr. De’Etra Young

Plant Science
Dr. Margaret Mmbaga, leader
Dr. Karla Addesso
Dr. Kaushalya Amarasekare
Dr. Ahmad Aziz
Dr. Fulya Baysal-Gurel
Dr. Matthew Blair
Dr. Anjin Chang
Dr. Arvazena Clardy
Dr. Charles K. Dumenyo
Dr. Behnaz Molaei
Dr. Dilip Nandwani
Dr. Jason Oliver
Dr. Emmanuel Omondi
Dr. Christine Ondzighi-Assoume
Dr. Darmalingham Pitchay
Dr. Sonali Roy
Dr. Ali Taheri
Dr. Resham Thapa
Dr. Anthony Witcher
Dr. Suping Zhou

Well-being and Health  
Ms. Rita Fleming
Dr. Brione Lockette
Dr. Veronica Oates
Dr. Melanie Austin
Ms. Akela Barnett
Dr. Linda Gardner