John Beck

John BeckTitle: Extension Associate, Horticulture Unit Coordinator
Department: The Cooperative Extension Program
Email: jebeck@ag.ncat.edu
Phone: 336-256-2218

Education

  • Master of Science, Crop Science, North Carolina State University
  • Bachelor of Arts, English, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 

Biography

Beck’s general research interests include sustainable agriculture, horticultural crop production, organic farming methods, season extension, local food, marketing and farm management. He also serves as the University Farm organic transition coordinator. Beck conducts multiple field- staff and- farmer trainings in the area of horticulture crop production, season extension and high tunnel management, including presentations during Small Farms Week, Small Farms Field Day, and field staff in-service trainings, produced by The Cooperative Extension Program.

Beck’s graduate-degree academic program focused on agro-ecology and sustainable production systems and his research consisted of sustainable strawberry production using cover crops and vermicompost. As a graduate student, he also served as a teaching assistant for introductory biology courses.

In July 2012, Beck joined The Cooperative Extension Program as the coordinator for Youth Engaged in Agriculture, a youth-based apprenticeship project funded by the USDA Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Development Program. As the horticulture unit coordinator at the University Farm, Beck’s primary responsibilities are assisting with applied research and demonstrations, such as testing strawberry varieties for high tunnel production, field tomato production, planting dates for winter greens and warm season vegetables in high tunnels, grafted cucumber production, alley cropping of cool-season vegetables and woodland production of herbal (medicinal) crops. 

Focus Area

Sustainable agriculture, horticultural crop production, organic farming methods, season extension, local food, farm management and marketing