Iowa State Agronomist Awarded Pioneer Hi-Bred Professorship

AMES, Iowa — Michael Thompson, Iowa State University agronomy professor, has been awarded the Pioneer Hi-Bred Agronomy Professorship. Thompson's research program centers on environmental applications of soil science, with emphasis on chemical processes and soil mineralogy. He has taught courses in soil chemistry, clay mineralogy, soil genesis and classification and ethical decision-making in agronomic sciences. As the Pioneer Hi-Bred Professor of Agronomy, Thompson plans to involve more undergraduates in his research projects, expand morphological and chemical studies of soil organic matter and reorganize his courses around cooperative learning principles. Pioneer Hi-Bred established the endowed professorship in 1997 through a gift to the ISU Foundation. The intent of the professorship is to support research, teaching and extension at the Iowa State agronomy department. The Pioneer Agronomy Professorship is awarded by the chair of the department to an agronomy faculty member who displays excellence in his/her field of scholarship based on critical areas of importance within the department's strategic plan. The appointment is for three years. Thompson received his bachelor's degree in agricultural sciences in 1974 from the University of Illinois and his doctorate in agronomy from the Ohio State University in 1980. He has been a faculty member in the agronomy department at Iowa State for 27 years. -30-