The Agronomy Department was established in 1899 as a division of the College of Agriculture.1 The department is concerned with the utilizing of fertile soils to their fullest advantage, and with bettering the social and economic position of the owner and tiller of the soil.2
On May 11, 1995, the Board of Trustees approved the renaming and reorganization of the College. It was renamed the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences and several changes were made in the organization of departments and divisions.3 The Department of Agronomy, except for soil scientists, was combined with the Department of Plant Pathology to create the Department of Crop Sciences.4 The Department's areas of study are plant breeding and genetics, biotechnology and genetic engineering, crop evaluation, crop protection, plant pathology, design of field experiments, weeds and their control, and production and pathology of cereals, corn, soybeans, and forage crops.5 Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees are available through graduate study and course work.6
1. Richard G. Moores, Fields of Rich Toil, (Urbana: 1970), p. 235. n. 33 and p. 222. Board of Trustees Transactions, 20th Report, August 16, 1899, p. 140. See also Through the Years with the Department of Agronomy, Special Publication No. 1, University of Illinois College of Agriculture, May, 1960, p. 6.
2. Through the Years with the Department with the Department of Agronomy, p. 7.
3. Board of Trustees Transactions, 68th Report, May 11, 1995, p. 277-8.
4. University of Illinois, Faculty and Student Senate, Urbana-Champaign Senate, meeting minutes, March 27, 1995, EP 94.33, p. 35.
5. Programs of Study 2001-2003, p. 46.
6. Ibid., p. 221.