My Plant Path: Matthew Pereyra

Matthew Parara Pic

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
A: My name is Matthew Pereyra and I’m a 2nd-year graduate student in the Department of Plant Pathology. I’m working with Linda Kinkel on the role of antagonism and nutrient competition in plant disease suppressive soil communities.

Q: How did you get involved with plant pathology as a discipline?
A: As an undergraduate in biology, I had interests in microbial interactions with their hosts and disease in particular. I was recommended plant pathology as a field full of opportunity for doing significant research in both basic and applied aspects of host-microbe interactions.

Q: Was there a specific moment in your life that made you decide to pursue a career in Plant Pathology?
A: During my undergraduate, I had the opportunity to work in an actual research lab. I got to develop my own questions and test them with experiments that I designed. The first time that I was able to definitively answer a question I had with the data that I generated, that was when I knew.

Q: What has it been the most rewarding moment of your career so far?
A: The most rewarding moments of my career so far have
been getting data and getting positive reviews from
students I taught.

Q: What do you enjoy most about our department?
A: I enjoy the collaborative and supportive nature of the department. I really feel like everyone around me wants to help me succeed and be the best researcher that I can be.

Q: Can you describe how being part of this department has helped your mission as a scientist?
A: The diversity of experience and expertise among my peers in the department has helped me to look at plant pathology in different ways and made me a better scientist.

Q: Can you tell us about your exciting research/scientific plans for 2020?
A: I will be conducting a series of experiments to evaluate how communities of antibiotic-producing microbes might be
better at suppressing pathogens, despite actively inhibiting each other.