Early Career Scientist Spotlight | Savannah Beyer

Savannah Beyer is a member of  the Weng lab at the USDA ARS Vegetable Crops Research Unit (VCRU) in the Department of Plant and Agroecology Sciences at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Savannah Beyer

Introduce yourself—your background, where you are now, and your current research focus.

I started working in a USDA lab as an undergraduate working on genes associated with malting quality in barley. After receiving my master’s degree where I studied wheat roots, I searched for a job in plant breeding and genetics and applied as a technician to the cucumber research program. Since I began two years ago, I have worked on disease resistance genes, integrating more efficient phenotyping methods, and I introduced KASP genotyping to our program.

Why did you choose to work with Cucurbits, plant breeding, plant pathology, genomics, horticulture, agricultural economics or crop production?
I love science and I love food. Plant breeding and genetics is the intersection of these two passions.

What do you hope to accomplish during your time working on the CucCAP grant, and what do you most look forward to in this position?
I hope to contribute to the successful generation of disease resistant cucumber cultivars. I look forward to helping discover new sources of disease resistance.

Please provide a brief description of your research.
I am working on screening lines for disease resistance, introgression of disease resistance genes, and genotyping for disease resistance genes.

What is your favorite crop?
Of course, my favorite crop is cucumber. Cucumber is an excellent species for genetic studies because of the short generation time and relatively small genome.