Graduate Student Spotlight: Noah Berkowitz

Noah Berkowitz is a doctoral candidate in Natural Resources Sciences
Noah Berkowitz is a doctoral candidate in Natural Resources Sciences

— by Jerome Okojokwu-Idu, SNR Graduate student

Noah Berkowitz grew up in Marlboro, New Jersey and in New York. "Being exposed to community service early in life" is partly why he is very active with the Graduate Student Association of SNR-UNL, he explains in this interview. This influence stretches to the choice of his career path after graduate school. Read all about it!

What are you studying, and what informed your choice?

I’m studying Natural Resource Sciences, and emphasizing in Remote Sensing; if you like, remotely sensing crop yields. There’s a need for wider understanding of crop yield to make informed decisions. I’m working with Dr. Brian Wardlow and Dr. Daniel Uden as my advisors.

My hometown is Marlboro, New Jersey. It was a thriving agricultural city – with very fertile soil (named for its marl beds). It was well known for crops like potatoes and tomatoes. I recall while growing up that our neighbors reared horses and had sheep. But over the years, we have lost vast swathes of arable land due to urban sprawl. Statistics say that across the United States, farmland acreage has decreased by about 13 million acres since 2014! That’s an average loss of over 1.9 million acres (about twice the area of Rhode Island) yearly.

Now, these experiences are inextricably associated with my study. I’m researching the best approaches to ensuring an efficient use of land resources. The end is to see satellite imaging deployed in analyzing land productivity for crops and to decide early on the reallocation of the same piece of land to more productive use, like preservation/conservation.

It is commonplace to use large datasets stored in the NCCPI, a metric for potential productivity, but I can provide a modeled yield as a decision point.

Read the complete story at:

More details at: