Issue: 487

College News

Catlett to Present College Sesquicentennial Lecture Feb. 21
Internationally renowned speaker and futurist Lowell Catlett will present the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences ISU Sesquicentennial Lecture on Feb. 21. Catlett, an ISU alum, Regent's professor and dean of the College of Agriculture and Home Economics at New Mexico State University, will present "Dreaming the Future: Trends and Technologies for the Next 150 Years," at 7 p.m. in the Sun Room of the Iowa State Memorial Union.

ISU Researchers Part of Soybean Genome Project
A preliminary assembly and annotation of the soybean genome has been made available by the U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute to the scientific community to enable bioenergy research. Randy Shoemaker, agronomy and Agricultural Research Service (ARS) collaborator, was part of the group that initiated the project through the DOE JGI Community Sequencing Program. Agronomy/ARS collaborator Steven Cannon was part of the genetic mapping team. The preliminary data can be accessed online.

Fabiosa Named Fulbirght Scholar
Jacinto Fabiosa, co-director of the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute in the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development at Iowa State, has been named a Fulbright Scholar to conduct research at Cairo University in Cairo, Egypt.

Ag Economist John Ikerd to Deliver Deb. 24 Shivvers Lecture
Agricultural economist John Ikerd will discuss his ideas about sustainability on Feb. 24 when he presents the 2008 Shivvers Memorial Lecture. The professor emeritus at the University of Missouri will present "Family Farms in an Era of Global Uncertainty" at 7 p.m. in the Sun Room of the ISU Memorial Union. More:

Study Abroad Seminar Series Begins Feb. 13
A seminar series titled "Stories of Teaching and Learning in Study Abroad" is being sponsored for the second year by the Global Agricultural Programs Office, the Study Abroad Center, the Study Abroad Exchange Committee, the Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching and the ISU Chapter of Phi Beta Delta. The seminar, "Reciprocal Group Programs in Study Abroad," will be presented Feb. 13 at noon in 142 Curtiss Hall. Group leaders will discuss their experiences with partners in China, South Korea and Costa Rica. Feel free to bring a lunch; coffee and cookies will be served. 

Deadlines and Reminders
Feb. 11: Entomology department chair candidate seminar, Leon Higley, professor, entomology department, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, 3:30 p.m., E164 Lagomarcino Hall
Feb. 12: Panel discussion, "The Future of Agriculture in Iowa," 7 p.m., Curtiss Hall Auditorium
Feb. 14: Spring Ag Career Day, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Great Hall and Sun Room, Memorial Union
Feb. 15: College convocation, 4:15 p.m., Curtiss Hall Auditorium, 127 Curtiss
April 4: Promotion and tenure workshop on the definition of scholarship, 3:10 to 5 p.m., CCUR auditorium, 1951 Food Sciences building
April 18: Promotion and tenure workshop on portfolio development, 3:10 to 5 p.m., CCUR auditorium, 1951 Food Sciences building
April 30: Promotion and tenure workshop for associate professors, 3:10 to 5 p.m., CCUR auditorium, 1951 Food Sciences building

Communications Kiosk

Jumpstart Your Writing with a Dark Screen
After you've developed a basic outline for a document, start your first draft with your computer monitor turned off, or turned down, so that you can't see what you write. According to John Sturtevant, owner of The Writing Workshop in Houston, a blank monitor helps you focus on ideas, not the words. Get your ideas down, even for a few minutes, he advises. If you can't think of a word, just input "xxx" and fill it in later. You may edit yourself too much when your monitor is on. And it doesn't help that Microsoft Word inserts distracting squiggly green lines under certain words, making you doubt your word choices. He said just seeing a blinking cursor can jangle your nerves if you're under deadline pressure. (Writing That Works, September 2007) 


Volunteers Sought for Judging Iowa Science Fair
The State Science + Technology Fair of Iowa is looking for volunteers to judge its events. The fair will be held March 28 and 29 at Hilton Coliseum and the Scheman Building. Those with a degree in a science, engineering, technology or related fields are needed for judging and people with a master's or doctorate are sought to lead judging teams.

CELT's Spring Programming Online
The Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching's list of spring semester programs is online. Registration for the upcoming workshops and events is available through AccessPlus > HRS Training > Courses. Contact us at 294-5357 or if you have difficulty using AccessPlus. 

Graduate Student Award Applications Due in March
The Graduate College seeks applications for four graduate student awards available this spring semester. The Zaffarano Prize for superior performance in publishable research by a graduate student and the Karas Award for an outstanding dissertation in the behavioral sciences are due March 3. Research Excellence Awards to honor graduate students at the time of their graduation for outstanding research accomplishments and Teaching Excellence Awards to recognize and encourage outstanding achievement by graduate students in teaching are due March 25. More:

Applebaum Scholarship Applications Due June 1
Applications for the 2008 Applebaum Memorial Scholarship Award for Outstanding Ph.D. Dissertation, M.S. Theses and M.S. Case Study/Research Paper Relating to Food Distribution & Marketing are due by June 1. The Food Distribution Research Society is pleased to accept applications for the scholarship, which is awarded annually for outstanding student research in the area of food distribution and marketing.

Economic Research Service Fact Sheets Filled with State Data
USDA Economic Research Service state fact sheets contain frequently requested data for each state and the entire country. These include current data on population, per-capita income, earnings per job, poverty rates, employment, unemployment, farm and farm-related jobs, farm characteristics, farm financial characteristics, top agricultural commodities, top export commodities and the top counties in agricultural sales. More:

Internal Voices

Distance Education Increases Access to College Programs
"Fundamental to the land grant mission is access by citizens to degree programs and courses that contribute to these evolving needs. The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Distance Education Program is striving to meet these needs." --Gaylan Scofield, director, Brenton Center for Agricultural Instruction and Technology Transfer, spring newsletter


ARS Sends Seeds to Global Seed Vault in Norway
Seeds from more than 11,000 plant varieties are being shipped by the USDA Agricultural Research Service to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault in Norway. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a partnership of Norway and the Global Crop Diversity Trust, is designed to store duplicates of seeds from collections from around the globe. If seeds are lost for any reason -- natural disasters, war or power failure -- the seed collections could be re-established using seeds from Svalbard. This first shipment of seeds from ARS to Svalbard contains 471 crop species, including maize, soybeans, peanuts and sunflowers. Additional shipments are anticipated each year for the next 5 to 10 years, until most of the germplasm represented in the NPGS collection is also stored at Svalbard. The ARS shipment will arrive to be part of the grand opening of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault on Feb. 26, when the first sunlight for 2008 will appear over the Arctic night. (ARS News Service, Jan. 30)

Ag and Life Sciences Online

Ed Adcock,
Phone: (515) 294-5616

Ag and Life Sciences Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is e-mailed every Monday. To subscribe, send your name, e-mail address and the message "Ag and Life Sciences Online subscribe" to To unsubscribe, send "Ag and Life Sciences Online unsubscribe."

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