The Oregon State University Sesquicentennial Oral History Project

Sort Interviews by Affiliation or Theme

Bernadine Strik Oral History Interview

Life history interview conducted by Mike Dicianna.

August 21, 2015


“A Berry Expert for Oregon”  August 21, 2015  Location: Valley Library, Oregon State University.  Watch Video | Download Transcript (PDF)

In the interview, Strik discusses her family background and worldly upbringing, noting her years living in The Netherlands, Australia, and British Columbia. She likewise recalls her earliest interests in horticulture and the progression of her studies and research as an undergraduate and doctoral candidate. From there, Strik describes her arrival at Oregon State University, her initial impressions of OSU and the Horticulture department, and the duties of her first OSU position as an Assistant Professor and Extension Berry Crops specialist.

A primary theme of the interview is the evolution of Strik's research over the course of her career at Oregon State. In this, she provides an outline of her early work on strawberries and wine grapes, her close and fruitful association with the North Willamette Research and Extension Center, advancements that she made in high-density planting of blueberry crops, and multiple investigations that she led on marionberries. She likewise comments on cranberry production, organic berry crops, the hardy argute kiwi fruit, and Oregon huckleberries. Throughout her reflections, Strik refers to the many connections that she has made in industry and her belief in the importance of the modern application of the land grant mission.

As the session begins to wind up, Strik shares her sense of pride in having receiving numerous awards for her research and teaching. She then details her current work on plant fertilization and nutrient management, and discusses the need to address global climate change. The interview concludes with notes on family and extracurricular activities, and final thoughts on the continuing importance of Extension and Experiment Stations.