I am currently completing my PhD, at the University of the Free State (UFS) in South Africa. I am focusing on soybean and sunflower stem and head rot, caused by Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. I am under the supervision of Professor Neal McLaren and Professor Emerson Del Ponte, Universidade Federal de Viçosa (UFV), in Brazil. I enjoy doing the data science components of my research and getting out into the fresh air to conduct our field trials. 

I am a contracted academic staff member, teaching an Introductory Plant Pathology course as well as an honours course in an Introduction to Plant Disease Epidemiology. I currently supervise two postgraduate students, at MSc and PhD level. I am the Principle Investigator in my division for Plant Disease Epidemiology. Our research group focus on Sclerotinia diseases of oilseed crops and sorghum foliar and grain diseases.

I have taught myself how to use R and R-studio, under the guidance of my co-supervisor and lab mates at the UFV. I am encouraging my post-graduates to do the same. I provide them with guidance but promote self-learning as this is a heuristic process. 

Outside of my academic work, I am also the Blog and Social Media Editor for Open Plant Pathology (  I am passionate about Open Science and Reproducible Research 

Career Status:
Graduate Student

Research Areas:
Food Security, Systems Biology, Applied Plant Biology

Volunteer Activities

Coordinator for the South African Sclerotinia Research Network (

Social Media and Blog Editor for Open Plant Pathology ( 

Current Affiliations
Experience & Education