Maria Smith has joined the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science as a Viticulture Program Specialist, where she will be focussing on outreach in the viticulture industry. She is excited to apply her experiences to extension in helping the Ohio wine grape industry members achieve their production goals. Maria earned her B.S. in biology at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2009, an M.S. in horticulture from Cornell University in 2012, and recently defended her Ph.D. in horticulture at The Pennsylvania State University in August 2018. At Penn State, she worked under Dr. Michela Centinari in viticulture, researching the implications of vine selection on spring frost recovery and the use of novel and traditional canopy management practices on yield regulation, wine quality, and vine health in Vitis vinifera and Vitis hybrid grape varieties.