Peter Apicella

Pete is currently a senior in the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources studying horticultural sciences. After graduation, he plans to go to graduate school to further pursue the applied plant sciences.

He’s been fortunate to have a number of rewarding learning experiences throughout his college career at UConn. For example, Pete has worked in Floriculture, one of the university’s greenhouses, as an assistant. He built on this experience this past summer, interning at a commercial greenhouse, called Grower Direct Inc. Working as a grower-in-training, he learned the ropes of the industry, participating in everything from how water crops effectively to controlling pests. Simultaneously, Pete and his research partner received an IDEA Grant to work with their professor, Dr. Mark Brand, in his crop breeding program. Together they worked on the one of the largest collections of Aronia varieties, analyzing the sugar content of each of the plants’ berries. In regards to a different independent study, conducted last fall, Pete hopes that his plant tissue culture project will be accepted and published by a peer-reviewed journal in the coming months. In addition, he has been working on his honor’s thesis related to weed science by using cover crops with special properties to help lower weed pressures in a cropping system. This fall Pete has a new position working with UConn’s Spring Valley Student Farm. Here he will be the research coordinator for the new aquaponics facility.

In his free time, he rows on UConn Men’s Crew team. He is also an avid forager of wild edibles.

High School Attended: Saint Peter’s Preparatory School (Jersey City, NJ)

Favorite Dairy Bar Ice Cream Flavor: Maple Walnut

Three Pieces of Advice for Prospective Students:

  1. Question your beliefs. Be open to other peoples’ opinions.
  2. The hardest part is starting.
  3. It’s okay to make mistakes. Try to learn from them, and not to repeat them.