Strategic Initiatives

In 2017, the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (AGNR) embarked on a broad-based, grassroots strategic visioning process that yielded over 44,000 comments reflecting important trends and issues affecting our college, state, industries and society. We analyzed and categorized each comment to identify key thematic areas that captured the breadth and depth of AGNR’s expertise and impact on our communities and citizens. From that process, these Strategic Initiatives emerged as our foundation, upon which we will build a stronger and more influential College.

Celebrating Our Strategic Initiatives

Establish a Healthy Food System and Ensure Global Food and Nutritional Security


  • Improve human health and well-being by increasing availability and access of safe and nutritious food with the goal of healthy food consumption.
  • Encourage creativity and entrepreneurship in the production and processing of safe and nutritious food.
  • Inform food safety and food security policy based on sound basic and applied research.
  • Utilize food resource management education as a mechanism to increase food access and healthy food consumption.

 Featured Work 

Ensure Healthy Watersheds and the Chesapeake Bay


  • Safely apply fertilizer, manure, biosolids and other landapplied materials to protect water quality and soil health.
  • Develop stormwater management technologies in the built environment to protect and conserve water resources.
  • Create environmentally aware communities to promote interest and participation in environmental stewardship.
  • Design land use management strategies to minimize negative environmental impacts.
  • Adapt in the face of climate change to address sea level rise and extreme weather.
  • Collaborate with partners across the watershed in the development of strategies for the protection of the Bay’s living resources.

 Featured Work 

Advance Innovative, Profitable, and Sustainable Agricultural Production Systems

Ag Innovation

  • Increase plant and animal productivity through new technologies, cutting edge research and Extension programs.
  • Improve and conserve soil health and water quality to sustain farms through the generations.
  • Address measures to manage the changing climate and its impact on agricultural production in Maryland.
  • Contribute to the success of agricultural businesses.
  • Provide educational opportunities to create the next generation of agricultural leaders.

 Featured Work 

One Health: Improve Human, Animal, and Environmental Health


  • Improve animal and human health by reducing disease transmission between animals and humans.
  • Advance community health in a changing world.
  • Reduce chronic diseases in animals and humans.
  • Analyze environmental, agricultural, and health policy and inform decision makers.
  • Promote and support healthy and livable communities through education of all ages.

 Featured Work 

Optimize Urban Environments Through Design, Green Technology, and Community Engagement

Green Tech

  • Improve the design and performance of built environments to optimize resource use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Encourage development, access, and adoption of green technology.
  • Build capacity for communities to meet self-identified needs related to nutritious food, clean water and air, safe shelter, and other social justice issues.
  • Establish a broad coalition of stakeholders to tackle issues and problems related to urban environments.
  • Train and prepare the environmental and agricultural workforce for the unique challenges and complexities of urban environments.

 Featured Work