Issue: 1028

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
Oct. 29, 2018

Top Stories

CALS Welcomes Dean-select Daniel Robison during Homecoming
Endowed Dean-select Dan Robison visited campus last Friday and over the weekend. On Friday, he met with Interim Endowed Dean Joe Colletti and the CALS administrative team. He had lunch with the CALS Cabinet (deans, department chairs, program directors and CALS Student Council President Alex Brand). At a welcome reception in the Harl Commons, Dean-select Robison and his wife Julie met with about 150 faculty, staff, students and others. On Saturday, he visited with alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students at the Department of Animal Science’s annual Chuckwagon Breakfast, the Agricultural Business Alumni Homecoming Tailgate, the Sigma Alpha Homecoming Tailgate and the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition Tailgate. He attended the ISU Homecoming football game against Texas Tech, meeting more friends, fans and university and state leaders. Today (Monday), Dean-select Robison had breakfast with state agricultural leaders in Des Moines before returning to West Virginia. His letter to faculty, staff and students distributed Thursday morning following the announcement is available online.


Agronomist Contributes to National Academies Climate Report
Mahdi Al-Kaisi, agronomy, was part of a team of scientists that developed a national research agenda for carbon dioxide removal and sequestration. The team was commissioned by the National Academies of Sciences and last week released a report titled Negative Emissions Technologies and Reliable Sequestration: A Research Agenda. Al-Kaisi, who specializes in soil science, co-authored the chapter on Terrestrial Carbon Removal and Sequestration. More

Genetic Pathway Influences Plant Growth and Disease Resistance
Yanhai Yin and Hongqing Guo, genetics, development and cell biology, have shed new light on a genetic pathway that influences both plant growth and disease resistance, making it a promising target for breeding new crop varieties that can fight pathogens without sacrificing performance. The research has been published in Current Biology. More

Multidepartmental Resonant Sensor Research Group Receives NSF Grant
A group of ISU researchers including Marshall McDaniel, agronomy, have received a National Science Foundation Partnerships for Innovation program grant to mature and translate a platform technology with a global industry partner. The grant states that the potential of this project is to enable commercialization of a platform sensor technology that has many potential applications in consumer, agriculture and health markets. More

New Studies Funded to Improve Success Strategies for Cover Crops
Improving the odds of a successful cash crop after cover crops is the aim of several new projects funded by the Iowa Nutrient Research Center. Planting cover crops is a conservation practice that is a linchpin of the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy, adopted in 2013. One way to achieve the strategy’s goals is to expand the use of cover crops to approximately 12 million acres, so they can soak up excess nutrients, keeping them out of streams and drainage tiles and ultimately reducing nutrient levels flowing to the Gulf of Mexico. More

CALS to Co-host Precision Livestock Farming Workshop Dec. 6
CALS, in collaboration with the College of Veterinary Medicine, will host the first ISU Precision Livestock Farming Workshop on Dec. 6, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Scheman Building. The workshop will feature speakers who are leading experts in the precision livestock farming discipline, program directors of USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research, industry representatives and ISU researchers. Free registration is open to ISU faculty, staff and graduate students. RSVP by Nov. 15 to Lynn Laws (

Teaching and Students

Gov. Reynolds Proclaims Agricultural Entrepreneurship Week
Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a proclamation designating Nov. 5-9 as Agricultural Entrepreneurship Week. The Agriculture Entrepreneurship Initiative at ISU and affiliated students, entrepreneurs, investors, businesses and supporters are planning several events to mark the second year of the designation. More

Block and Bridle Club Selling Summer Sausage and Cheese
An online form is available for the Block and Bridle Club’s annual holiday summer sausage and cheese sale. Order by Nov. 14 for Thanksgiving delivery and Dec. 5 for Christmas delivery. Contact or 4-1865 with questions.

Snow Blower Service Days, Nov. 2-3
The Agriculture Systems Technology Club will hold its annual snow blower service days Nov.  2 (1 to 6 p.m.), and Nov. 3 (8 a.m. to 3 p.m.), at Sukup Hall on the west side of campus. The $25 cost includes oil, spark plug, grease and a tank of gas. Pickup and delivery (Ames only) is available for $15; call (515) 708-8672 or send an email request to by 2 p.m. on Nov. 1 to request this service.

Around the College

Francis Appointed to NAREEE Advisory Board
Sarah Francis, food science and human nutrition, has been appointed to serve on the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education and Economics Advisory Board. Each board member represents a specific category of U.S. agricultural stakeholders. Francis will represent the National Nutritional Science Society. More

CALS Alumni Honored at ISU Alumni Association Ceremony
CALS and the ISU Alumni Association presented the following awards at the annual Honors and Awards Ceremony on Oct. 26.

  • James Christensen (’80 farm operation) received the CALS Floyd Andre Award.
  • Dawn Mellion-Patin (‘95 agricultural education and studies) received the CALS George Washington Carver Distinguished Service Award.
  • Max Rothschild received the CALS Henry A. Wallace Award.
  • Jen Sorenson (’01 animal science and journalism and mass communication) received the CALS Outstanding Young Professional Award.
  • Roger Underwood (’80 agricultural business) received the ISU Alumni Association’s Alumni Medal Award.
  • Brian Darrow (’79 animal science) received the ISU Alumni Association’s Club of Chicago Alumni Merit Award.
  • The Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, represented by department chair Steve Mickelson, received the ISU Alumni Association’s Impact Award.

Ag Ed and Studies Faculty and Staff Receive Awards at Regional Conference
The 2018 North Central Conference of the American Association for Agricultural Education was held on Oct. 4-6 in Fargo, N.D. Scott Smalley received the Outstanding Early Career Member Award. Distinguished Research Poster Awards went to Scott Smalley, Kelsey Sands, Rachael Whitehair, Mark Hainline and Trent Wells. Distinguished Innovative Idea Poster Awards went to Hainline, Wells, Elizabeth Foreman, Breanna Wetzler, Marcus Jansen, Kayla Toennies, Izzy Shehab and Riley Wilgenbusch.

Iowa State Meat Science Program Celebrates Century of Influence
Animal science will celebrate 100 years of meat science in November when current and retired faculty, alumni and students gather to recognize one of the country’s first land-grant meat science programs. It began with construction of Iowa State’s first meat laboratory in 1917. In the decades since, the program and its faculty, housed in the Meats Lab, now connected to Kildee Hall, have become well-known for leadership in teaching and extension, such as its student meat judging teams and popular short courses. The program’s research also has had — and continues to have — significant impact on the meat industry in this country and around the world. More

CALS Events Contribute Almost $2,000 to United Way Campaign
The annual book sale and online auction hosted by CALS raised $1,964 towards the Live United Way Campaign in Story County. The book sale raised $511, with the remaining books donated to the Ames Library, the Ames Rosedale Youth Shelter and Goodwill. The online auction raised $1,453.


Nov. 3: Puerto Rican Cultural Night
Puerto Rican Cultural Night is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 3, at 6 p.m. in the Memorial Union Great Hall and South Ballroom. The event is designed to promote cultural understanding and offer a taste of Puerto Rican traditions in the Midwest, including live music, dancing, ethnic food and additional activities. CALS is a co-sponsor of the event, which is free and open to the public.

Communications Kiosk

Contrasted To vs. Contrasted With
Use “contrasted to” when the intent is to assert, without the need for elaboration, that two items have opposite characteristics: “He contrasted the appearance of the house today to its ramshackle look last year.” Use “contrasted with” when juxtaposing two or more items to illustrate similarities and/or differences: “He contrasted the Republican platform with the Democratic platform.” (Associated Press Stylebook, 2018 edition, pg. 68)


Disability Awareness Week Aims to Educate ISU Community
Disability Awareness Week, beginning today, Oct. 29, is a series of events aimed at educating the ISU community about the wide variety of disabilities, bringing awareness to the barriers faced by many of these individuals and advocating for a more accessible ISU. A full list of events is available online. More


Apple Facts Abound at Parks Library
Parks Library recently published a variety of apple facts and where additional information on apples can be found in the library. Did you know that apples are a member of the rose family? Some apple trees will grow more than 40 feet high and live more than 100 years. There is an art collection (circa 1880-1974) that contains lithographs of apples and other fruits. Of particular interest are the lithographs of apples that William Henry Prestele made for the Iowa State Agricultural College; these prints depict specimens collected by Professor of Horticulture J. L. Budd. Under horticulture there are books about apples and apple growing located at SB363 (Tier 5). Chieftain apples were developed at ISU by Spencer Beach, an 1887 graduate of Iowa State College who later served as the head of the horticulture and forestry department. Interested in developing cold-hardy apples, Beach crossed Jonathan and Red Delicious apples to produce the Chieftain variety in 1917. 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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