|B. Rosie Lerner|
Extension Consumer Horticulture Specialist
Department of Horticulture & Landscape Architecture
West Lafayette, Indiana
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M.Sc. - The Ohio State University, 1983
Area of emphasis: Horticulture
"A typical day has to do with horticulture education," says consumer horticulture specialist Rosie Lerner
. "I serve as a resource for Indiana county extension educators and Master Gardeners on topics pertaining to consumer horticulture via phone calls, plant identification, and lectures. I develop horticulture education tools including news releases, radio spots, television programs, educational displays and extension bulletins.
An avid writer and gardener who provides state-wide coordination of the Indiana Master Gardener Program, Lerner especially enjoys her interaction with the public. "There's no question that the most rewarding experience is in developing that special partnership with our Master Gardener volunteers. They are the ideal student, wanting to pick your brain and absorb as much information as they can. But more than that, its their dedication to helping other folks learn that makes them extra special."
"While certainly the classes are important, getting experience in the trenches is really critical," recommends Lerner. "My internship experience as an undergrad really changed my path from a commercial greenhouse focus to Extension work. I was also a teaching assistant for some horticulture classes as well as a volunteer in the Home Horticulture Center. All of these activities not only helped me apply what I was learning, but also reaffirmed that I did in fact crave the human interaction that a career in Extension offers."
Lerner, who authored Possum in the Pawpaw Tree: A Seasonal Guide to Midwestern Gardening, reminds us to be humbled by Mother Nature. "No matter how much you study and work, the world of plants, even just the horticultural plants, is so huge that you can never learn it all. There will always be room to grow your knowledge!"