sponsored by Northeastern Weed Science Society

The main purpose of the Penn State Weed Science Team is to prepare for the Northeastern Weed Science Society - Collegiate Weed Science Contest. The contest provides an educational experience from which students in the Northeastern universities can broaden their applied skills in weed science. The contest offers an opportunity for students interested in weed science to meet and talk with each other, be exposed to researchers from other universities and industry, and apply what they have learned using a contest to measure their capabilities. The weed science contest is held annually at a university or industry host location in the northeastern United States or Canada. The day-long competition brings together approximately 40-60 graduate and undergraduate students from northeastern universities in the U.S. and Canada. Students compete as individuals and as teams for regional awards. The contest consists of competition in four areas:

Preparation for the Contest
Benefits to the Students
Weed Identification

Contestants are required to identify 25 weeds and weed seed samples by common (and some by scientific name). The specimens are selected from a list of 83 species that is provided prior to the contest.

Application Technology

This is a two-part competition

Problem Solving and Recommendations

This is a role-play event in which the participant assumes a position of an extension, sales, or research person dealing with a farmer/grower in a field or office setting.

Identification of Unknown Herbicides

About 20 crop and weed species are treated with different herbicides. The contestants must determine from control, injury, species present, and other symptoms what herbicides were used. Herbicides and species used are selected from a list that is provided prior to the contest.