Issue: 913

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
Aug. 15, 2016 – No. 913

Top Stories

CALS Faculty and Staff Invited to Attend Annual BBQ on Sept. 3
CALS faculty, staff and guests are invited to join the college at the annual barbecue on Sept. 3, 3 to 6 p.m. at the Jeff and Deb Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center prior to the ISU vs. UNI football game at 7 p.m. Attendees will enjoy complimentary Hickory Park barbecue, networking with CALS alums and friends and hands-on family friendly activities from CALS student organizations. Shuttle service will be provided to and from the stadium. Register to attend by Aug. 20.

Volunteers Needed for Annual CALS BBQ
Volunteer opportunities are available for faculty and staff to welcome CALS alumni and friends at the annual barbecue on Sept. 3. Anyone interested in volunteering may register or contact Haley Cook at  Please volunteer by Aug. 20. Volunteers are needed for:

  • Set-up (1-3 p.m.)
  • Registration (2:30-5 p.m.)
  • Greeting (2:30-5 p.m.)
  • Beverage service—Shift 1(2:30-4:30 p.m.)
  • Beverage service—Shift 2 (4:30-6:30 p.m.)
  • Tear down (6-7:30 p.m.)


CALS Faculty Serve on Research Advisory Council
The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research selects advisory council members to advise foundation staff and board members regarding program development and implementation, potential partnerships and other matters of significance to the organization’s mission to support innovative science addressing today’s food and agriculture challenges. CALS faculty serving on one of the foundations six advisory councils are: Helen Jensen, economics, Food System Innovation Council; Gwyn Beattie, plant pathology and microbiology, Plant Efficiency Council; and Doug Karlen, agronomy and USDA Agricultural Research Service, Soil Health Council (chair). More

Des Moines Editorial, Chicago Story Highlight STRIPS Program
The Des Moines Register published an editorial in Sunday’s newspaper about the state’s loss of rich topsoil and conservation practices. “One element of a broader comprehensive strategy should be the innovative Iowa State University initiative called STRIPS, which stands for Science-based Trials of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips,” the article reads. The program promotes planting strips of native prairie on active farmland. More Also, an article in the Aug. 8 issue of the Chicago Tribune talks about research at ISU and how wild prairie could help the state’s agricultural industry. “The reason why we have the best soil, making it possible to have the world’s best food production, is prairie,” said Lisa Schulte Moore, natural resource ecology and management. More

Teaching and Students

Agricultural Business Club Students Take Top 3 Awards at AAEA
Three CALS students from the Agricultural Business Club placed in the Earl O. Heady Decision Sciences Spreadsheet Competition at the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association annual meeting in Boston, July 31 to Aug. 2. Nate Christenson placed first, Geordan Hanson second and Trevin Kennedy third. All three are seniors in agricultural business. The club won the Creative Club Award for its new trivia night idea. A team consisting of Christenson, Kyle Bates, senior in agricultural business, and Drew Mogler, a May 2016 graduate in agricultural business, placed third overall in the academic bowl competition. Club advisers are Ronald Deiter, Amy Brandau and Georgeanne Artz, economics. More

Iowa Farm Bureau Intern Talks about Women in Agriculture
Chloe Carson, a senior in agricultural and life sciences education, is an intern in the marketing and communications division of the Iowa Farm Bureau. In a recent post in the Bureau’s Farm Fresh Blog, Carson talks about women in agriculture. More

My Wurstfest Experience: A First-hand Report
On July 21, Sarah Mathers, CALS communications intern, attended the annual Wurstfest event held as part of ISU’s sausage and processed meats short course. There were more than 60 unique sausage products to choose from. “My first bite into a cheddar and jalepeno bratwurst sausage was crisp, spicy and decadent all at the same time,” Mathers said. “Wurstfest was an unforgettable experience,” she added. “It represented more than sausage production. It was about the people who attended, the teamwork involved to make the event possible and the passion for the meat industry.” More Klaus-Peter Kreibig, a wurstmacher (sausage maker) from Wuppertal, Germany, retired after presenting at the short course for 30 years. A meat science scholarship was created to honor Kreibig’s work with ISU. More

Extension and Outreach

Licht Hired to Create Cropping Systems Management Program
On Aug. 1, Mark Licht began his new role as an assistant professor in the department of agronomy, focused on integrated cropping systems extension. His work will aim to improve crop productivity, profitability and the stewardship of natural resources. More

ISU’s Insect Zoo to Host Bug Chef
David George Gordon, known as the Bug Chef, will do cooking demonstrations at the Bug Village on Aug. 27, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the atrium of the Molecular Biology Building. The Bug Village, hosted by ISU’s Insect Zoo, is free and open to all ages. More

Around the College

Wright Morton Co-Authors Book on Managing River Landscapes
Lois Wright Morton, sociology, and Ken Olson, University of Illinois, have co-authored a book on the effects of climate extremes including flooding and droughts in the Mississippi and Ohio River basins. “Managing Mississippi and Ohio River Landscapes” is published by the Soil and Water Conservation Society.

New Leadership at Ag Engineering/Agronomy Research Farm
The ISU Agricultural Engineering/Agronomy Research and Demonstration Farm near Boone has new leadership. Mike Fiscus has been appointed superintendent of the farm and Nathan Meyers has been named the farm’s agricultural engineering manager. More

VanDePol Retires after 39 Years of “Harvesting Information”
Richard VanDePol retired Aug. 3 as co-manager of the Agricultural Engineering/Agronomy Research and Demonstration Farm. He is credited with bringing many positive changes to the farm since starting in 1984, using his creativity and good humor. More


Aug. 17: Iowa Learning Farms Webinar
A virtual watershed game that allows users to experiment with different land management scenarios is the topic of the Iowa Learning Farms webinar on Wednesday, Aug. 17, at 1 p.m. Lisa Schulte Moore, natural resource ecology and management, will discuss the People in Ecosystems/Watershed Integration project.

Aug. 19: Taming the Email Beast
CALS and the College of Engineering are co-sponsoring Randy Dean’s “Teaming the Email Beast” session on Friday, Aug. 19, 9 to 11 a.m. in 2155 Marston Hall. Dean is a nationally recognized trainer and consultant with methods for managing your email inbox and processing email. Space is limited to 165 participants. To register, email your name and department to

Aug. 24-25: USDA Pathways for Recent Graduates
CALS Career Services office will host a USDA Pathways for Recent Graduates event on Aug 24-25 in the Memorial Union Cardinal Room. More than 35 recruiters from Farm Service Agency, Risk Management Agency and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services will be on campus for the event. The federal initiative targets recent graduates (less than two years out; six years for those with military experience) and Dec. 2016 graduates for training programs within the designated agencies. Under this initiative, recruiters are able to conduct on-site interviews and offer direct hires, thus minimizing the potential lengthy application process often associated with these positions. Interviews will be conducted in the Memorial Union Pioneer Room.

Sept. 8: CALS Fall Convocation
The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Fall Convocation is scheduled for Sept. 8 at 4:10 p.m. in the Memorial Union Sun Room. The program will include brief comments from Dean Wendy Wintersteen and recognition for the College’s new faculty and staff since last fall. CALS award recipients will be honored during the program. (The CALS Spring Awards Program, originally scheduled in February, was cancelled due to the weather.) A reception will follow.

Funding Opportunities

USDA Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate Fellowship Grants
The USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture is accepting applications for the Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate and Postgraduate Fellowship Grants Program. The 2016 Request for Applications solicits projects that support training students for master's and doctoral degrees in food, agricultural and natural resource sciences, and for special international study or thesis/dissertation research travel allowances. Post-doctoral fellowships will not be awarded. Applications are due by Oct. 11. More

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Fundamental Research in Unmanned Aerial Systems
The National Science Foundation’s Directorates for Computer and Information Science and Engineering and Engineering have announced their intention to support fundamental research that advances the use of unmanned aerial systems to save lives, increase safety and efficiency, and enable more effective science and engineering research. NSF welcomes proposals that accelerate fundamental technological advances in UAS. Proposals should be submitted to existing CISE and ENG core and crosscutting research programs. More

AAAS Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science
The American Association for the Advancement of Science Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science recognizes early-career scientists and engineers who demonstrate excellence in their contribution to public engagement with science activities. Nominees are typically within seven years of receiving Ph.D., and post-doctoral fellows are eligible for this award. The award includes a monetary prize of $5,000 and travel expenses to attend the AAAS annual meeting to receive the prize. Nominations are due Oct. 15. More   

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

Aug. 31 (on-line inquiry): The John Templeton Foundation; small and large grants, core funding areas include life sciences. More

Oct. 9: Society of Toxicology - Syngenta Fellowship Award in Human Health Applications of New Technologies; dose-dependent effects of xenobiotics, third year or later graduate student, $15,000. More   

Oct. 10 (concept note): USAID, South Africa, Sweden, the Netherlands – Securing Water for Food: A Grand Challenge for Development Competition (Round 4); $100,000 to $2 million; matching funds required. More   

Oct. 20: NSF Energy for Sustainability; typical awards $300,000 standard project, $450,000 collaborative project. More

Oct. 20: NSF Environmental Engineering; typical awards $110,000 per year, up to three years. More   

Dec. 7: NIH Big Data to Knowledge Research Education Curriculum Development: Data Science Overview for Biomedical Scientists (R25); $450,000 direct cost, one application per institution, email to express interest. More

Dec. 7: NIH Big Data to Knowledge Enhancing Diversity in Biomedical Data Science (R25). More

Communications Kiosk

Fewer or Less?
In general, use “fewer” for individual items, “less” for bulk or quantity. Fewer than 10 applicants called (individuals). I had less than $50 in my pocket (an amount). I had fewer than 50 $1 bills in my pocket (individual items). (Associated Press Stylebook, 2015 edition, pg. 101)


Facebook is Most Popular Among Farmers
Facebook is by far the most popular social media used by U.S. farmers, followed by Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr and Periscope. That’s according to a Farm Futures survey of 1,550 farmers conducted earlier this year. More


Horton Offers Advice to Early Career Faculty
Bob Horton, agronomy, was invited to provide advice to early career faculty in the June 29 issue of the Crops, Soils and Agronomy News magazine. He emphasized setting priorities and developing relationships. “I have a Google Scholar profile, but it does not quantify my relationships,” Horton said. “Each journal paper involves many hours of work primarily with young scientists. The greatest joy of my career is working with graduate students and young scientists. Effective mentoring is a labor of love, and it’s fruit helps to form the next generation of scientists.”

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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