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Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources

OSU open house to showcase entomology careers

STILLWATER, Okla. (March 8, 2018) – Do you like insects, spiders, scorpions or other invertebrates? Have you ever wondered what it takes to become an invertebrate expert, otherwise known as an entomologist? If so, Oklahoma State University has an opportunity for you.

Students ages 13 and older are invited to take part in an open house and recruitment event at OSU’s Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology in Stillwater. Slated April 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., this free event will give students and their families an opportunity to meet entomologists and entomology students, talk with academic advisors and tour the department’s laboratories. Lunch will be provided.

Phil Mulder, professor and head of the department, said people do not always have a clear idea of what an entomologist actually does.

“The first thing they usually think about when it comes to entomology careers is the Orkin man or pest control,” Mulder said. “Our department offers three degree options for our undergraduate students, including insect biology and ecology, pre-med/pre-vet and bioforensics. There are essentially three jobs for every graduate of our program.”

Career options are varied and include the obvious pest control, but also job opportunities in forensic entomology, biosecurity entomology, teaching, research, Cooperative Extension, insect diagnostician, insect physiologist, insect biochemist, molecular biologist and integrated pest management consultation, to name a few. Nearly all agricultural industries employ entomologists and there is the opportunity to go on and earn other professional degrees in the medical, veterinary and even legal fields.

The open house will begin at the Insect Adventure, which is home to a wide variety of spiders, insects and other arthropods. Directions to the Insect Adventure can be found at Youth participants will have an opportunity to explore some of the live specimens while parents meet academic advisors and discuss degree options and scholarships. Following lunch, the group will go to campus, tour labs and meet with professors and students to learn more about majoring in entomology.

Mulder said entomology students in the department get a lot of individualized attention from the faculty members.

“We are a smaller department, but our students have an opportunity for a plethora of laboratory and field experiences, and we take all new students to the Oklahoma Academy of Sciences Fall Field Day at one of the state parks,” he said. “With their capstone project, students also have the chance to attend a professional meeting where they present their project and compete for monetary prizes and possibly attend a national meeting. In addition, our students get involved in various clubs and contests to further their learning and meet new friends. We also offer numerous work opportunities, which is another great way to apply classroom knowledge and develop relationships.”

While at the open house, both students and parents will learn more about course requirements and scholarship availability. Mulder said the department currently offers new students a $400-$500/semester scholarship.

To register for the open house, please contact Pam Thomas at Registration deadline is April 6. You can learn more about the department by visiting There you will find information related to scholarships, courses and newsworthy events within the department. Be sure to browse the Future Students section for information about applying to OSU.


Trisha Gedon
Agricultural Communications Services
Oklahoma State University
136 Agriculture North
Stillwater, OK  74078
405-744-3625 (phone)
405-744-5739 (fax)

Oklahoma State University - Stillwater, OK 74078