PLANET Student Career Days in Raleigh, NC Wows Plant Science Students

Posted: May 14, 2015

26 Plant Science students traveled to Raleigh, NC and competed against 62 other colleges and universities in twenty-seven different events. The team placed 11th overall. Most importantly, everyone had a great time.

The Professional Landcare Network’s annual Student Career Days competition was held this year at North Carolina State University in Raleigh. This event brings together students from colleges and universities from across the country in programs such as landscape contracting, horticulture, landscape architecture, plant science, forestry, and other related fields to compete in a variety of indoor and outdoor events. The competition is held over four days with workshops and networking events mixed in with the competition and fun student activities. One of this year’s favorite activities was an evening dinner event featuring five different types of barbeque and country music.

This year the Penn State team included twenty-six students and four faculty/coaches. On the way down the team stopped and toured gardens and landscapes at Colonial Williamsburg and met with an alumnus of the landscape contracting program, Jason Ingram, who is now in charge of landscapes at Busch Gardens. Students were treated to a behind the scenes tour of the park as the staff prepared it for opening day.

Upon arrival in Raleigh, Ruppert Landscape had everyone to their new facility where they provided an overview of their companies activities, community service, and employment opportunities. This also gave us a chance to reconnect with several alumni from the horticulture and landscape contracting programs. Running into alumni at these events is fairly common since many of them are successful in the green industry and view PLANET SCD as a great opportunity to recruit new leaders in the field.

The actual SCD completion was held at the North Carolina State Fair Grounds where over 800 students from sixty-two schools competed in twenty-seven different events. This year PSU ranked 11th overall with several student placing in the top three positions for their events. Next year the competition will be held at Mississippi State. The Horticulture Club, which organizes this event each year, extends an invitation to all interested students to contact us in the fall for more information on the dates and competitive events. Everyone is welcome to participate.

Submitted by Lianna Wodzicki (