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Andrej Svyantek Defends Ph.D. Thesis

Andrej Svyantek successfully defended his plant sciences Ph.D. thesis on April 15, 2021. The title of his thesis is Altering Grapevine Crop-load and Canopy Architecture Through Cultural and Genetic Methods. He is advised by Dr. Harlene Hatterman-Valenti, working as part of the North Dakota State University grape germplasm enhancement project.
Andrej Svyantek Defends Ph.D. Thesis

Andrej Svyantek (right) with advisor Dr. Harlene Hatterman-Valenti

May 14, 2021

Andrej Svyantek successfully defended his plant sciences Ph.D. thesis on April 15, 2021. The title of his thesis is Altering Grapevine Crop-load and Canopy Architecture Through Cultural and Genetic Methods. He is advised by Dr. Harlene Hatterman-Valenti, working as part of the North Dakota State University grape germplasm enhancement project.

Svyantek researched several aspects of grape growth including techniques to encourage fruit ripening in North Dakota’s short growing season and transitioning grapevine leaves from a simple to a compound leaf. 

He chose to attend NDSU and work with Hatterman-Valenti because of his interest in working with a young grape and wine industry under immense abiotic stresses, namely North Dakota's cold winters. He likes NDSU and tells others, “Come to NDSU, your flesh will freeze but your soul won’t.” 

During his time at NDSU, Svyantek received numerous scholarships and awards at conferences and symposiums, which are listed below. 

Awards

  • First Place Oral Presentation, Doctoral Students; NDSU Chapter, Gamma Sigma Delta Research Symposium (2021)
  • Best Student Video Presentation Award, Virtual, Third Place; American Society for Enology and Viticulture (2020)
  • First Place Oral Presentation, Viticulture; American Society for Enology and Viticulture Annual Conference (2019)
  • First Place Poster Presentation, Viticulture; American Society for Enology and Viticulture - Eastern Section Annual Conference, (2018)
  • Third Place Oral Presentation; NDSU Chapter, Gamma Sigma Delta Research Symposium (2018)
  • Second Place Oral Presentation; NDSU Graduate Student Council Research Symposium (2018)
  • First Place Poster Presentation, Viticulture; American Society for Enology and Viticulture - Eastern Section Annual Conference, (2017)

Scholarships

  • General Scholarship; American Society of Enology and Viticulture (2020 and 2019)
  • Charles and Linda Moses Presidential Graduate Fellowship; NDSU; Plant Sciences (2020 and 2018)
  • Ushio Sakazaki Innovation in Plant Breeding Scholarship; Proven Winners (2019)
  • Frank Bain Graduate Student Scholarship; NDSU; Plant Sciences (2019)
  • Presidents’ Award for Scholarship and Viticulture; American Society of Enology and Viticulture (2018)
  • American Wine Society Educational Foundation Scholarship; North Alabama Chapter (2018)

He has accepted a position as the Assistant Extension Specialist - Grape and Wine Specialist in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Oklahoma State University.

His graduate committee included Hatterman-Valenti, Dr. Gregory Cook, Dr. Xuehui Li, and Dr. Esther McGinnis.

Author: Karen Hertsgaard, karen.hertsgaard@ndsu.edu
Editor: Kamie Beeson, kamie.a.beeson@ndsu.edu

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