Issue: 1021

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
September 17, 2018

Top Stories

Open Forum with Second Dean Finalist this Afternoon
Titus Awokuse from Michigan State University is the second finalist for the next endowed Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Director of the Iowa Agricultural and Home Economics Experiment Station at Iowa State University. He is on campus this week and will meet with students, faculty, staff and stakeholders during the interview, and hold an open forum today, Sept. 17, at 3 to 4 p.m. in the Memorial Union Cardinal Room. The curriculum vitae and interview itinerary are available on the Provost’s Office search page. The third finalist will be on campus Sept. 26-28, with an open forum on Sept. 27 at 3 to 4 p.m. in the Memorial Union Pioneer Room. More

Student Ag 450 Farm Celebrates 75 Years
ISU’s student-managed farm is celebrating its 75th anniversary. Known as the Ag 450 Farm, it is operated by students enrolled in the course “Agricultural Farm Management and Operations 450.” The farm is the only completely student-managed farm at a land-grant university in the nation. Approximately 150 students are involved in the management of the farm each year. Student farm managers are planning a celebration that includes a banquet on Sept. 21 at the Jeff and Deb Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center and an open house located at the farm on Sept. 22. More


Research to Develop Innovative Mathematical Models for Agriculture
An interdisciplinary team of ISU scientists including Sotirios Archontoulis and William Beavis, agronomy, are bridging the gap between engineering and farming by applying machine learning and mathematical modeling to perennial problems in agriculture. The project recently received a five-year, $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation. More

Teaching and Students

Agronomy Student Serves as Borlaug-Thomson Intern  
Abby Kennon, a junior majoring in agronomy, spent the summer in her hometown of Cresco working as the 2018 Borlaug-Thomson intern with the Norman Borlaug Heritage Foundation. Kennon’s responsibilities included coordinating events for the foundation and helping at the Howard County Fair. More

CALS to Host Unconscious Bias Workshop for Students
The college is hosting an Unconscious Bias Workshop for all CALS students on Sept. 28, 9 a.m. to noon in 368a Heady Hall. The workshop will help participants to identify their biases and to provide them with practical strategies for using that understanding to improve performance when working across cultures. Registration ends Sept. 20. Students needing a class excuse letter may indicate so on the registration form.

FundISU: Support Sought for Graduate Student Seminar Exchange Program
A crowdfunding campaign has been launched in support of the Plant Pathology and Microbiology Graduate Student Organization. Contributions on FundISU, the crowdfunding site on the ISU Foundation website, will be used to support a graduate student seminar exchange program between ISU and other land-grant universities. The goal is $1,800 and the campaign runs through Oct. 5. More

Extension and Outreach

Monarch Conservation Featured in Coop Publication
The Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium and its work are featured in the September issue of “Living with Energy in Iowa,” published by the Touchstone Energy Cooperatives of Iowa. Joe Colletti, CALS interim dean, said “The consortium continues to emphasize development of practical, scientifically proven strategies for increasing monarch habitat in combination with crop and livestock production in Iowa and the Upper Midwest.” More

Lundy Named Beef Specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach
Erika Lundy has been hired as a beef specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. She will be housed in the Adair County office and will work with producers in the southwest part of the state. More

Around the College

Crespi Named as Interim Director of CARD
John Crespi, economics, has been named interim director of the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development and will serve for one year. Crespi is an agricultural economist who works in the areas of food marketing and business competitiveness. More

AAU President Praises Xin as Researcher with Positive Influence on a Global Scale
Hongwei Xin, agricultural and biosystems engineering, director of the Egg Industry Center and CALS assistant dean for research, was highlighted in a Sept. 10 blog post about how U.S. researchers can be a positive influence on a global scale. Mary Sue Coleman, president of the Association of American Universities, said Xin has “dedicated his life to applying science to egg production, increasing efficiencies in operations and making farmers’ lives a little easier.” More

Christians Honored for 40 Years of Service in Turfgrass Management
Nick Christians, horticulture, was honored for 40 years of service at the annual ISU Turfgrass Field Day hosted on Sept. 11 by the Horticulture Research Station. Christians is known nationally and internationally for his teaching, research and impact on the plant science field of turfgrass management. His discovery of the herbicidal properties associated with corn gluten meal resulted in several patents.

Faculty, Staff Receive University Awards
Faculty and staff recipients of the university’s most distinguished awards were honored on Sept. 14 at the ISU Faculty and Staff Awards Ceremony. The following individuals from CALS departments and centers were recognized. More

  • Amy Andreotti, biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, University Professor
  • Donald Sakaguchi, genetics, development and cell biology, Morrill Professor
  • Gwyn Beattie, plant pathology and microbiology, Regents Award for Faculty Excellence
  • Thomas Peterson, genetics, development and cell biology, Regents Award for Faculty Excellence
  • Curtis Youngs, animal science, Regents Award for Faculty Excellence
  • Philip Gassman, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Regents Award for Staff Excellence
  • Raji Joseph, biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, Regents Award for Staff Excellence
  • Jodi Sterle, animal science, James Huntington Ellis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Introductory Teaching
  • Christopher Currey, horticulture, Award for Early Achievement in Teaching
  • Kendall Lamkey, agronomy, Award for Departmental Leadership
  • Don Beermann, animal science, Award for Early Achievement in Departmental Leadership
  • Manjit Misra, Seed Science Center, International Service Award
  • Amy Brandau, economics, Award for Academic Advising Impact
  • David Grewell, agricultural and biosystems engineering, Award for Mid-Career Achievement in Research
  • Adina Howe, agricultural and biosystems engineering, Award for Early Achievement in Research
  • Corrinne Grover, ecology, evolution and organismal biology, Professional and Scientific Research Award
  • Dileepkumar Guntuku, Seed Science Center, Professional and Scientific Excellence Award
  • Alison Robertson, plant pathology and microbiology, Award for Outstanding Achievement in Extension or Professional Practice
  • Lee Schulz, economics, Award for Early Achievement in Extension or Professional Practice

Emerging Leaders Academy Names 2018-19 Cohort
Leana Bouffard, sociology, Laura Jesse Iles, plant pathology and microbiology, and Misty Lambert, agricultural education and studies, are part of 28 faculty and staff chosen to participate in the 2018-19 cohort of ISU’s Emerging Leaders Academy. The initiative helps prepare faculty and P&S staff serving or aspiring to serve in leadership roles. More

CALS United Way Book Sale Scheduled for Oct. 4-5
The ninth annual CALS United Way book sale is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 4, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the ground floor rotunda of Curtiss Hall and in the Molecular Biology Building Atrium. Books and CDs will be sold for $1 each or six for $5. DVDs will be sold for $2 each. On Friday, Oct. 5, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., the remaining items will be sold at the Curtiss Hall rotunda location for a free will donation. All proceeds will go to the 2018 ISU United Way Campaign. Donations will be accepted through Oct. 3 at 138 Curtiss Hall and 1210 Molecular Biology Building. Contact Carla Persaud at or 4-1823 with questions.

New Faculty and Staff Booklet Available Online
A booklet of faculty and staff that joined CALS during FY2018 was distributed to those who attended the college’s fall convocation on Sept. 4. The PDF document is available online. It was prepared by Ellen Bombela, CALS Communications Service student intern.


Sept. 28: Cultural Competency Lunch and Learn Series
The CALS Office for Diversity Programs is beginning its fall semester’s cultural competency series on Friday, Sept. 28, with a four-hour workshop at 1 to 5 p.m. (location TBD). Samara Hakim, founder of The Culture Factor, LLC, will facilitate a workshop on “Managing Unconscious Bias: Strategies for the Classroom” Please register online by Sept. 21. Registration is limited to the first 50 participants.    

Oct. 2: Deal Lecture
The William K. Deal Endowed Leadership Lecture will be held Oct. 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Memorial Union Sun Room. Sara Wyant, president and founder of Agri-Pulse Communications Inc., will present “Unlocking Your Inner Entrepreneur: How one of the luckiest days of my life was when I got fired from a job I loved.” More

Oct. 4: Ice Cream Social and Raffle
The CALS Professional and Scientific Council is hosting an ice cream social and raffle on Oct. 4 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. in the Kildee Hall Pavilion. You are invited to meet your representatives on the newly-formed, college-specific P&S council. Jeff Hartwig, animal science and manager of the Swine Teaching and Research Farms, is president; Susan DeBlieck, horticulture, is past president; and Barb McBreen, CALS Communications Service, is secretary. Committees include communications, networking and social events, professional development and mentoring, and recognition and awards. Ex-officio members are the CALS representative to the university P&S Council (Casey Smith) and CALS Interim Senior Associate Dean (Ruth MacDonald).

Oct. 4: Pierre Memorial Lecture in Soil Science
The William H. Pierre Memorial Lecture in Soil Science will be held Oct. 4 at 4:10 to 5 p.m. in 2050 Agronomy Hall. William Schlesinger, president emeritus of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, will present “Soil Carbon Sequestration for Climate Change Mitigation: What We Can Expect.” The lecture is sponsored by the agronomy department, the ecology, evolution and organismal biology department, and the Leopold Center.

Oct. 6: Bacon Expo
Save the date for this year’s Bacon Expo, to be held Oct. 6, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. Organized by CALS students, Bacon Expo is a family friendly event where participants can sample creative bacon treats and enjoy live entertainment and education displays about the pork industry. More

Communications Kiosk

Introducing Direct Quotes
Use a comma to introduce a complete one-sentence quotation with a paragraph: Wallace said, “She spent six months in Argentina and came back speaking English with a Spanish accent.” Do not use a comma at the start of an indirect or partial quotation: He said the victory put him “firmly on the road to a first-ballot nomination.” (Associated Press Stylebook, 2018 edition, pg. 323)


Call for Proposals Released for International Grants Program
The Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost has released a call for proposals for the ISU Council on International Programs FY2019 International Grants Program. The purpose is to fund individual and group projects led by ISU faculty and staff to expand the number of students who gain an international perspective through participation in study abroad. Grants will provide support for the development of new study abroad programs or substantial expansion of existing programs. Proposals are due Oct. 15. More

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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