Issue: 1033

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
Dec. 3, 2018

Top Stories

CALS Student Focuses on Local and Global Food Security
Alyssa Dougherty, a junior in dietetics and global resource systems, is an advocate for global food security. Her passion stems from her experience with the World Food Prize. In high school she attended the Iowa Youth Institute for four years and the Global Youth Institute for one year. The experience that impacted Dougherty’s advocacy for global food security the most was her time in Guatemala as a 2017 Borlaug-Ruan International Intern between her freshman and sophomore year of college. She was also a part of Land O’ Lakes’ Global Food Challenge Emerging Leaders for Food Security program, where she was able to research international issues related to food security. More


CALS Researchers Named AAAS Fellows
The American Association for the Advancement of Science is honoring seven ISU researchers, including Fredric Janzen and Dean Adams, ecology, evolution and organismal biology; Jianming Yu, agronomy; and Kristen Johansen, biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology. They are among 416 researchers from around the world who make up this year’s class of AAAS Fellows. More  

Farmland Expansion Increases Carbon Footprint in Corn Belt
Faster conversion of land into agricultural production in recent years has raised the region’s carbon cost of producing grains, according to research recently published in Environmental Research Letters and led by Chaoqun Lu, ecology, evolution and organismal biology. Because carbon is a component of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane, its transfer from the ground into the atmosphere can contribute to climate change. More

Teaching and Students

CALS Student Council Elects New Officers for 2019
The CALS Student Council elected officers for 2019 during its last meeting of the year on Nov. 28. President is Jenna Rasmusson, junior in agronomy; vice president is Megan Zwiefel, junior in agricultural business; secretary is Erin Chalupa, junior in animal science; and treasurer is Elizabeth Smith, sophomore in agricultural business. The CALS Council is made up of representatives from more than 30 clubs within CALS. The council coordinates the new student barbecue in August, CALS week events in October, events for National Ag Day in March and other student events. More

CALS Students Earn Top Honors at Tuskegee’s Professional Ag Workers Conference
Four students joined Theressa Cooper, CALS assistant dean for diversity, at the 76th Professional Ag Workers Conference, taking place now, Dec. 2-4, at Tuskegee University. The student paper and poster competition was held on Sunday. Amali Stephens, senior in biology, placed first in the poster competition. Theresa Brehm, senior in global resource systems, placed first in the oral presentation competition. The national conference explores the latest developments in agriculture and outreach. More

NREM’s Russell Part of Sketchnoting Project for Students
Over the last three years, sketchnoting has been introduced to about 1,000 students, faculty and staff across a wide range of disciplines at ISU. This fall, an interdisciplinary research team including Ann Russell, natural resource ecology and management, is studying how this alternative to traditional note-taking affects learning. More

Four Days Remaining for Forestry Club’s Christmas Tree Sale
There are four days remaining for the Forestry Club’s annual Christmas tree fundraiser.  Trees will be for sale Dec. 6-9 at the Reiman Gardens Parking Lot. Hours are Thursday 3 to 6 p.m., Friday 12 to 6 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The club will have Fraser fir, balsam fir, and white and Scotch pine, as well as balsam fir wreaths. Proceeds go towards club activities and student development. More

Block and Bridle Summer Sausage and Cheese Sale Ends Tuesday
Tuesday, Dec. 4, is the last day to order from the Block and Bridle Club’s annual holiday summer sausage and cheese sale. The summer sausage is made on campus in the Meats Laboratory and the cheese (cheddar, colby jack and mild pepper jack) is from Bongards Creamery in Minnesota. Money raised will be used for club trips, and shows and scholarships hosted by the club. Contact with questions.

Extension and Outreach

Animal Science’s Interactive Website Will Teach Animal Care Basics
Amy Powell, a 4-H program specialist in the Department of Animal Science, is creating an interactive video series called Animal University to make animal care information available to youth. Powell coordinates curriculum and activities for more than 16,000 youth enrolled I Iowa’s 4-H animal science projects, FFA and ag-focused classrooms. More

Iowa Crop Performance Tests Prepare for 100th Year
The Iowa Crop Performance Tests are gearing up for their 100th year of gauging the yields of hundreds of seed varieties, an annual effort that helps farmers decide what seeds to plant the following year. The Iowa Crop Improvement Association, a nonprofit organization linked with the Department of Agronomy that runs the crop performance tests, recently published online this year’s results. The tests take place on ISU research farms and cooperating private farms across the state. More

CARD to Announce Land Value Survey Results Dec. 12
Results of the 2018 ISU Land Value Survey will be announced at a news conference on Dec. 12 at 10 a.m. in the Horton Room of the ISU Alumni Center. The annual survey is conducted by the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development and ISU Extension and Outreach. More

Around the College

Suza on Educating the Public about Gene-Edited Crops
“Crop varieties created by gene editing could benefit farmers in developing countries by providing bigger yields with better nutrition and greater tolerance to stress. But the public’s suspicion and fear impede the application of plant biotechnology in regions where it would be most useful. International outreach efforts are gearing up to increase public understanding of the scientific principles behind the technology. This will help governments to make informed decisions about gene-edited crops.” The above excerpt is from a letter co-authored by Walter Suza, agronomy, in the Nov. 29 issue of Nature. One example of these outreach efforts is ISU’s Plant Breeding Education in Africa Programme, which provides free e-learning courses to universities in sub-Saharan Africa on the application of biotechnology and genomics in plant breeding. More

Future Efforts of Leopold Center to be Discussed at Dec. 5 Board Meeting
A summary of the Leopold Center’s review will be discussed at the Dec. 5 meeting of its advisory board. The review includes the center’s future potential efforts after its state funding was eliminated in 2017. The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. in 1204 Kildee Hall (Ensminger Room).

Chieftains Everywhere: Horticulture Station Distributes Apples around Campus
The Horticulture Research Station distributed part of a bumper crop of Chieftain apples to university offices last week “to spread a little goodwill across campus,” according to Nick Howell, superintendent at the station near Ames. Thirty-seven, 10-pound bags of apples were dropped off at main university and CALS department offices. The library will be handing out the apples to students during finals week and Dining Services has been buying apples as well. Apples are still available for sale by contacting Howell ( The Chieftain variety was developed at Iowa State in 1917 from a cross of the Jonathan and Delicious apples.


Dec. 5: Science With Practice Poster Presentation
This semester’s Science With Practice poster presentation open house will be held Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2 to 3:30 p.m. in the Kildee Hall Atrium. Science With Practice is a CALS experiential learning and work program for undergraduate students in agriculture.

Dec. 6: Artists Reception
The animal science department is hosting an artist’s reception on Thursday, Dec. 6, at 4:30 to 6 p.m. in the Kildee Hall Atrium. The event features nine Iowa artists whose agriculture-related works are exhibited in the Kildee Hall display case. The art at the reception is for sale by the artists. More

Communications Kiosk

Compared To vs. Compared With
Use “compared to” when the intent is to assert, without the need for elaboration, that two or more items are similar. For example: “She compared her work for women’s rights to Susan B. Anthony’s campaign for women’s suffrage.” Use “compared with” when juxtaposing two or more items to illustrate similarities and/or differences. For example: “His time was 2:11:10, compared with 2:14 for his closest competitor.” (Associated Press Stylebook, 2018 edition, pg. 63)


Project LEA/RN Workshop Scheduled for Jan. 8-9
Project LEA/RN is hosting a workshop on Introduction to Learning-Centered Classes and Meetings on Jan. 8-9 in 1022 Agronomy Hall. Participants will have the opportunity to discuss learning and teaching theories and brain research. Enrollment is limited to the first 20 educators who register. Contact Jan Wiersema,

Iowa Conservation Employees Offer Reduced Collegiate Rate for ‘Winterfest’ Conference
The Iowa Association of County Conservation Board Employees is offering a reduced registration rate of $25 for all collegiate attendees at its 48th annual Winterfest conference, scheduled for Feb. 5-7 in Coralville. The agenda includes a special session for collegiate attendees with a resume review component, as well as the opportunity to network with conservation professionals from throughout the state. More


CALS Entomologist Finds that Insects Turn Up in Odd Places
Greg Courtney, an entomology professor who specializes in aquatic insects, has traveled the world looking for new or rare species. It’s not unusual to find new species in poorly collected areas, he said of trips to places such as South America, Madagascar, Australia and New Zealand. “But what continues to surprise me is just how many things turn up locally that had never been recorded locally,” Courtney said. 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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