MSU Northern Agricultural Research Center Hires New Agronomist


by Jenny Lavey, MSU News Service

BOZEMAN – The Montana State University Northern Agricultural Research Center (NARC), located in Havre, has recently hired a new cropping systems agronomist who will lead research on dryland agriculture practices for north-central Montana.

Maryse Bourgault, assistant professor of cropping systems at NARC, is expected to begin at NARC on Feb. 1.  

“I’m thrilled to join the Montana State University Northern Ag Research Center,” Bourgault said. “I have been very impressed by the level of engagement between farmers and scientists, and I’ve been welcomed warmly by colleagues, not only at NARC, but from the larger university community. It’s exciting to be working in the number one state for pulse production nationally, and where agriculture in general is so important.”

Bourgault said she’s interested in interested in bridging the gap between fundamental and applied research for sustainable, productive and profitable farming systems discussing ideas for on-farm research trials in agronomy and precision agriculture farming practices, a fitting research priority for Montana, according to Darrin Boss, NARC superintendent.

“Dr. Bourgault brings to MSU an international experience of dryland agriculture training, field experience and background, that are a great fit for what’s currently happening in Montana agriculture. We have no doubt she’ll make an important impact in fundamental and applied agronomic research,” Boss said. “We’re glad to welcome Dr. Bourgault to NARC and the Montana agricultural community.”

Bourgault has already written a grant proposal about the root morphology of field peas in Montana environments, Boss noted.

Bourgault completed her doctoral and bachelor degrees at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. She has conducted research in several countries, including Uzbekistan, where she investigated drought tolerance and compared common bean and mungbean subjected to water stress. Bourgault also worked as an extension agronomist in Australia. She also participated in a post-doctoral fellowship program investigating crop traits that might be beneficial under future climates with elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations at the Australian Grains Free Air CO2 Enrichment facility. Bourgault recently received a travel fellowship and visited the University of Bonn, in Germany, where she worked on crop modeling.

Bourgault can be contacted at

Founded in 1915, for more than 100 years, NARC has conducted crop and livestock research on behalf of Montana agriculture. NARC consists of 3,000 acres located at Fort Assinniboine, a post-Civil War United States Military Fort, which now supports crops and livestock research, in addition to 3,960 acres of grazing land located in the nearby Bears Paw Mountains. A local advisory board made up of area producers and industry representatives from five surrounding counties provide guidance on NARC research priorities. NARC is one of eight research centers located strategically located across the state to address the diverse climatological challenges of Montana's agriculture and natural resource economies. This concentrated research center network, in addition to the central Bozeman campus hosting MSU, constitutes the Montana Agricultural Experiment Station (MAES), which houses the on-the-ground agricultural research profile for Montana agriculture in animal health, food safety, agricultural economics, plant sciences, natural resources and pest management.



MSU Courtesy Photo: The Montana State University Northern Agricultural Research Center (NARC), located in Havre, has hired Maryse Bourgault as its new cropping systems agronomist. Bourgault will lead research on dryland agriculture practices for north-central Montana.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x