Stockbridge alumni know Dr. J. Scott Ebdon as a kind, funny, warm, and knowledgeable mentor. Today Ebdon is a gentleman and a scholar who has earned a well-deserved retirement, and emeritus status with the University of Massachusetts.
Scott received his PhD from Cornell University, and joined the faculty of what was then called the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences way back in 1997, whenHanson's song "Mmm-Bop" was popular, and the first Harry Potter book saw its release.
Undistracted by popular culture, Ebdon focused on the well-being of turf grasses, identifying cultivars capable of tolerating both biotic and abiotic stress. By studying how different types of turf grass interact with both natural and cultural environments, Ebdon's work has helped to develop more sustainable practices for keeping turf grasses healthy.
As Stockbridge advances the science of sustainability, Dr. Ebdon has applied that research toward bringing sports into the 21st century with more sustainable practices.
Ebdon's collaborative research with others, especially his Stockbridge colleague Michelle DaCosta, has allowed superintendents of football fields, baseball fields, and golf courses to reduce their usage of water, fertilizer, and pesticides.
Turfgrass majors, and others at Stockbridge, will remember his teaching style from classes such as Turf Management (Intro and Advanced), Applied Calculations in Turf, and Integrated Turf Management, where he could often be seen teaching in his favorite T-shirt "I played on grass at UMass." We're fairly sure that his shirt referred only to the research of grass tennis courts at the Joseph Troll Turf Research Center, the longest running turf grass research center in the country.
Ebdon has published extensively, his more than 200 articles and book chapters contributing to our ranking as a top agriculture science university in the world, and he has supported the scholarship of others through the peer review process.
Ebdon was awarded a Citation of Excellence for Reviewers by the Crop Science Society of America. He is also a long-standing member of the American Society of Agronomy, and the American Society for Horticultural Science.
He has served as Chief Undergraduate Advisor of the Stockbridge Turfgrass Science and Management bachelor degree program since 2011, advising hundreds of students over the years, and helping them to find internships that advanced their professional value.
Ebdon was honored directly by UMass students who awarded him the UMass-Amherst Residential First-Year Experience Student Choice Award.
In 2013, he received the rank of Full Professor at the newly organized Stockbridge School of Agriculture.
We thank Dr. Ebdon for his 25 years of service to the University. Advising duties for the bachelor program in Turfgrass Science will be taken on by Ebdon's close colleague, Michelle DaCosta. DaCosta, recently promoted to full professor, is the chief undergraduate advisor for the 2-year associate degree program in Turfgrass Management, and the 4-year bachelor degree program in Plant & Soil Sciences.
Alumni may send notes of thanks and congratulations to email@example.com