History

Nebraska has a rich heritage in its grasslands, which comprises over 60% of the state's land mass. These grasslands serve as the basis for a strong cattle industry, vital wildlife habitate, a natural resource for maintaining surface and ground water quality, a source for sports and leisure recreation, and an influence on urban quality of life.

In addition, the University of Nebraska has a history of excellence in grassland research and education. Faculty, dispersed among many discipline-based units in the university system, provide nationally recognized leadership in the development of forage, range, and turf grasses. Their work emphasized the importance of having a grassland center for drawing together faculty at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln whose primary research and educational efforts were on some aspect of grasslands.

It is from this heritage, research, and education that the Center for Grassland Studies came into existence at the university within the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources in 1994.

Dr. Martin Massengale, President Emeritus of the University of Nebraska and a Foundation Professor in the Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, was appointed as Founding Director for the Center until his retirement in January 2017. Dr. Steven Waller, Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, now serves as the Interim Administrator for the Center.

Who We Serve

The Center for Grassland Studies serves the citizens of Nebraska in both rural and urban environments. Activities and programs serve farmers, ranchers, cattlemen, turfgrass managers, grass seed producers, homeowners, undergraduate and graduate students, and consumers. Programs enhance the understanding of the importance of grasslands to the economy, environment, water quality, soil quality, and quality of life. Finally, the Center for Grassland Studies serves the faculty and their administrative units, who have common goals and interests, in providing additional means of combining resources and facilities to address mutual problems and issues.