Issue: 836

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
Feb. 9, 2015 – No. 836

Top Stories

Aquaculture Outreach at Iowa State Evolves with Industry
Joe Morris, natural resource ecology and management, is director of the North Central Regional Aquaculture Center at ISU, which advances emerging trends in the aquaculture industry and identifies research questions that will help the industry progress. The center gathers input from aquaculture producers in 12 Midwestern states and directs federal funds to research and extension projects accordingly. More

Dean Wintersteen: Make Agriculture Research a National Priority
As a follow-up to the unifying message in support of agricultural research report that was presented at the National Press Club in December, Dean Wendy Wintersteen is leading a small task force to explore next steps. On Feb. 3, she posted a message on the Farm Foundation website, AgChallenge 2050. “As the report states, connect the dots of every major societal challenge ahead and what emerges is the critical importance of food, agricultural and natural resources research. A unifying message in support of agricultural research may sound daunting, but it’s incredibly exciting,” said Wintersteen. “Here is an opportunity to think boldly about one of the critical issues of our time.”


Research Shows Rented Farm Ground May be Most Vulnerable to Soil Erosion
A new report from the Drake University Agricultural Law Center contends that rented farm ground may be the most vulnerable to soil erosion and other degradation due to climate extremes. But landowners and managers have choices to help them manage these risks. The project was funded by the Leopold Center’s Policy Initiative.

Teaching and Students

CALS Student Speaks Out on Iowa Youth Institute
Ella Gehrke, a sophomore in global resource systems, attended the World Food Prize Iowa Youth Institute while attending Waukee High School. The 2015 Iowa Youth Institute will be held on the ISU campus on April 27. Gehrke writes about her experience and encourages Iowa youth to participate. “Not only will this enhance their educational and career paths, but these events will provide them with a new perspective on global affairs.”

Horticulture Club to Sell Roses for Valentine’s Day
The Horticulture Club is selling individual roses, arrangements and cards on Feb. 13, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., at a booth on the first floor of the Memorial Union.

Livestock Judging Team Brings Home Honors from Contest in Denver
The ISU Livestock Judging Team placed second in the hog division at the National Western Contest in Denver in January.

Extension and Outreach

ISU Hosts Entrepreneur Agribusiness Executive Conference
More than 40 agribusiness executives from across the nation participated in the annual Entrepreneurship Agribusiness Executive Conference hosted by the Iowa State Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative, Jan. 7-8. The conference provided a forum for assessing emerging trends and issues facing agribusiness. More

Iowa Should Designate a State Soil
Gerald Miller, professor emeritus, raised the issue of designating a state soil in a letter to the editor that ran in the Feb. 4 issue of the Des Moines Register. “The Tama soil was first established in Black Hawk County in 1917. It is identified in 26 Iowa counties, occupies more than 825,000 acres and is among the most productive soils in Iowa,” Miller said. More

Salute to Soil in 2015
The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization launched its first-ever International Year of Soils on Dec. 5; the goal being to raise awareness about the importance of healthy soils and to advocate for sustainable soil management to protect this natural resource. The Leopold Center website has more information on resources and activities related to the International Year of Soils.


Feb. 18: Retirement Reception for Will Emley
Will Emley, operations manager at the Ag Engineering/Agronomy Farm, is retiring after 31 years of service with ISU. An open house reception will be held at the AEA Farm on Highway 30 near Boone on Feb. 18, 2:30 to 4 p.m.

Feb. 19: Iowa Soybean Association Research Conference
The Iowa Soybean Association is hosting a research conference on Feb. 19 in Ames. The following CALS faculty will be presenting: Daren Mueller, Alison Robertson and Greg Tylka, plant pathology and microbiology; Matt Darr, Matt Helmers and Michelle Soupir, agricultural and biosystems engineering; and Lisa Schulte-Moore, natural resource ecology and management. More

Funding Opportunities

2015 NCR-SARE Professional Development Program Proposals Due April 2
The USDA’s North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program invites proposals for the Professional Development Program. It is designed to have educators who are knowledgeable in the concepts of sustainable agriculture and who partner with farmers, ranchers and others on developing programs and activities that enhance the sustainability of communities and the food and agricultural system. A special aspect of the 2015 call for proposals is that up to $450,000 of $675,000 total pool of funds is available for projects focused on cover crops and soil health. More

NSF to Fund SEES Supplements and Conferences
NSF established the Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability investment area in 2010 to lay the research foundation for decision capabilities and technologies aimed at mitigating and adapting to environmental changes that threaten sustainability. Proposals are being accepted to fund supplements to existing NSF-funded research and for conferences to enable understanding of food systems and their couplings to energy and water systems. Proposals are due by Mar. 30. More

Workshop on Understanding Funding Agencies: USDA
The Office of the VPR has scheduled a workshop to help faculty, researchers and support staff understand how to successfully seek sponsored funds from USDA. A faculty panel will discuss USDA's mission and structure, research funding opportunities, proposal review process and tips on how to write a competitive proposal. The workshop is scheduled for Feb. 24, 3 to 5 p.m. in 1951 Food Sciences Building. Registration

Funding Information, Opportunities and Deadline Reminders
Dates listed are application deadlines. Contact: Roxanne Clemens,
Additional information is posted at CALS Funding Resources.

Feb. 23: NASA Glenn Faculty Fellowship Program 2015.

Mar. 6: USDA Secondary Education, Two-Year Postsecondary Education and Agriculture in the K-12 Classroom Challenge Grants Program (SPECA).

Mar. 9: (expression of interest): Dept. of State US-Russia Peer-to-Peer Dialogue Program; $100,000. More

Mar. 15 (pre-proposals): International Wheat Yield Partnership First Competitive Call; $2 million over one to three years. More

Mar. 19: USDA Higher Education Challenge Grants Program.

Mar. 20 (concept paper): DOE Advanced Research Projects Agency Network Optimized Distributed Energy Systems; $250,000 to $10 million, cost share required. More

Mar. 24: EPA FY 2015 National Priority Activities for the Section 303(d) Program, the Nonpoint Source (Section 319) Program, the Wetlands Program and the Water Quality Monitoring Program; training and technical assistance activities. More

Mar. 31, Aug. 31: U.S. Poultry & Egg Association Poultry Protein & Fat Council - Research Program. More

Apr. 2 (letter of intent): USDA AFRI Food Security Program.

Apr. 6 (letter of intent): DOE Joint Genome Institute - Environmental Molecular Science Laboratory Collaborative Science Initiative; biofuels/bioproducts, plant-microbe interactions that impact climate.

Communications Kiosk

Give a Speech You Haven’t Prepared For
Anyone can learn how to give a memorable speech with practically no advance warning, writes a public speaking expert. Nick Morgan, contributor to Forbes, recently shared the following simple framework that speakers should follow to keep the impromptu remarks on time and topic:

  • Start with a headline that clearly states your point of view and frames your subject.
  • Give three supporting points, expanding on them for 30 seconds to a minute.
  • As the five minutes draw near—the limit to which you should keep your remarks—repeat the headline in similar words.

From the Feb. 2 issue of “Advancement Weekly,” published by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.


Agriculture and Natural Resources One of Five Highest Paying Degrees of 2015
USA Today made a list of college majors that will likely lead to the highest earnings for 2015 graduates, using census date coupled with an employer survey analysis by the National Association of Colleges and Employers. Number five on the list is agriculture and natural resource majors. More


Former Leopold Center Director Releases New Book
Dennis Keeney, the Leopold Center’s first director, reflects on his Iowa farm roots and the meaning of agricultural change in his new book, The Keeney Place: A Life in the Heartland.

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online

Julie Stewart, Editor, (515) 294-5616

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online, the newsletter for faculty and staff in Iowa State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is published by email every Monday. The deadline for submitting content is 12 p.m. on Friday.


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