About Us

Program and People

What We Do

Christy Gault, Summer 2014 graduate, currently a post-doc at Cornell University

The Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Program at the University of Florida is one of the most flexible and comprehensive graduate programs in the U.S. Its success is a result of its interdisciplinary emphasis. Our faculty members are deeply committed to helping students develop into successful biological scientists, capable of conducting independent fundamental and applied research.

Our Faculty

PMCB currently has 45 faculty members.

Their research interests span from basic to applied science, including genomics, proteomics, genetics, biochemistry, bioinformatics, computational biology, breeding, biotechnology, plant physiology and molecular and cellular biology. These faculty are housed in three University of Florida Colleges across eight different Departments: Agronomy, Biology, Environmental Horticulture, Forest Resources and Conservation, Horticultural Sciences, Microbiology and Cell Science, Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, and Plant Pathology.

Highlights of PMCB

  • First year students may rotate through three different PMCB faculty laboratories and select a major professor by the end of their first year.
  • Qualified students are supported by a variety of PMCB Graduate Research Assistantships and Fellowships.
  • Assistantships and Fellowships include a competitive stipend, medical insurance and a full tuition waiver.
  • PMCB students are not required to teach to receive a stipend and can focus on research.
We have a diverse group of graduate students and welcome all applications from highly qualified students. Preference is given to students who, besides having met the minimum requirements, have a strong research background, including lab experience. Having paper publications in peer-reviewed journals is highly desirable.

Our Program

The PMCB Program focuses on Ph.D. degrees. We encourage qualified students with a B.S. to apply directly to our Ph.D. degree. Financial support is awarded preferentially to students pursuing a Ph.D. degree. Master’s degrees are only offered to students who have identified a major professor willing to supervise and financially support their master’s study before gaining admission to PMCB.

We offer admissions in fall semesters only. Students can be admitted as rotation students or directly into a lab of their interest. First year Ph.D. students on rotation complete short research projects in three different PMCB faculty laboratories and select a Ph.D. advisor by the end of their second semester. All Ph.D. students must pass written and oral qualifying exams. Completion of a Ph.D. degree is approximately four to five years.

All students complete four core courses in Advanced Genetics, Plant Molecular Biology and Genomics, Plant Cellular and Developmental Biology, and Plant Biochemistry. Students are also required to take Journal Colloquia classes every fall and spring semesters until the completion of their studies. Students can select elective classes in biochemistry, molecular biology, physiology, breeding, genetics, evolution, microbiology, and plant pathology. Elective classes are chosen by the student and his or her graduate committee to reflect individual professional goals and research interests.

Applicants are encouraged to contact faculty in areas of interest regarding potential openings in their research laboratories.