Cassie Ferring


I was born and raised an army brat and I moved around about every 3 years or so, but there was always one constant and that was my love of animals. I grew up thinking I wanted to become a veterinarian and chose NC State for undergrad due to its great vet school. I chose a major in Animal Science and as I progressed through undergrad, I started to realize that veterinary medicine wasn’t all that there was to do with animals and it also wasn’t something I necessarily wanted to do. I always had an interest in genetics, so I decided to pursue that further by adding a genetics minor. During my junior year I was accepted into the CALS Honors Program, which required a semester of either teaching or research. This is how I became interested in research. I started working in quantitative genetics on a project with hybrid vigor in beef cattle during my senior year. The summer after my senior year, I started collecting data for a project in swine and I have been working with pigs ever since. I was accepted to do my master’s with Dr. Mark Knauer at NC State in the fall of 2013 and worked on a project estimating the genetic parameters of sow body weight loss during lactation. I began working on my PhD with Dr. Nick Serão in the spring of 2016. The project I am currently working on is the genetic evaluation of reproductive performance during outbreaks of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) and porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV). I will be working on host response to PRRS as part of my PhD project as well.