Issue: 1034

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
Dec. 10, 2018

Top Stories

CALS Convocation to Honor Graduating Seniors, Friday, Dec. 14
CALS will hold its fall convocation for graduating seniors on Friday, Dec. 14, at 10 a.m. in Hilton Coliseum. Doors open at 9 a.m. The CALS Student Council will present its senior awards (see award winners below and video clips on their college experiences). Kristen Lowe, agriculture and society and public relations, is the commencement speaker. Joi Latson, global resource systems, will be the CALS student marshal at the university undergraduate commencement ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 15, at 1:30 p.m. in Hilton Coliseum.

Videos: Graduating Seniors Share CALS Experiences
Check out the stories from seven award-winning CALS graduating seniors in these videos. The CALS Student Council will present awards to the following graduates: Hannah Corey, agronomy, for academic achievement; Stephanie McMillan, agricultural and life sciences education and global resource systems; Kayleigh Koch, agricultural business, for outstanding ambassador of agriculture; Hannah Pagel, agricultural and life sciences education, for leadership excellence; Mikayla Dolch, agricultural and life sciences education and international agriculture; Joi Latson, global resource systems, for commitment to diversity and inclusion; and Kristen Lowe, agriculture and society and public relations, for outstanding senior. 

Global Resource Systems Senior Chosen as CALS Student Marshal
Joi Latson, a senior in global resource systems, will represent CALS as the student marshal for the ISU fall undergraduate commencement. In addition to being engaged in co-curricular activities and providing leadership on campus and in the local community, Latson had an internship abroad and completed the Peace Corps Prep program offered through CALS. More


National Pork Board, FFA Fund $2 Million Research Project to Increase Pig Survivability
A research project led by the Iowa Pork Industry Center in CALS seeks to increase pork producers’ profits by improving the survivability of their animals. Jason Ross, Lloyd L. Anderson Professor in animal science and director of the center, will lead the project that also includes scientists from Kansas State University and Purdue University. The National Pork Board and the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research are providing nearly $2 million for the five-year study. More

CALS Research on Monarchs’ Egg-laying Preferences Can Guide Recovery Efforts
Loss of habitat containing milkweed plants is considered a leading cause of the precipitous decline in monarch butterfly populations over the past 20 years. To reverse the loss, recovery plans have ambitious goals for new habitat. There are hundreds of species of milkweed, and new research by ISU scientists suggests that all species are not equal when it comes to supporting monarch recovery; monarch females show a preference for certain types of milkweed when laying their eggs.  The findings were published in the October issue of the peer-reviewed journal Frontiers of Ecology and Evolution. More

Teaching and Students

Supporting Students a Priority This Week
Interim Dean Joe Colletti distributed an email Dec. 5 to CALS faculty and staff on supporting students during the final days of the semester. The final days of the semester bring challenges and difficulties to some students. CALS’ goal is to have all our students feel supported through this stressful period, and to ensure their CALS experience remains a positive one with caring faculty and staff. Please stay attuned to students you advise, supervise or interact with regularly. Check in to see how they are doing. Faculty and staff are encouraged to refer students to CALS Student Services if there are serious grade issues or financial issues, or if students are experiencing medical, mental health or family crises. Students can find resources by contacting the CALS Student Services office: Students can call 294-6434 or email Assistant Dean Howard Tyler,, for an appointment.

Agronomy Student Wins National Seed-Plant Science Video Contest
Kevin Falk, a Ph.D. candidate in agronomy focusing on soybean breeding, is the grand prize winner of the American Seed Trade Association’s second annual “Better Seed, Better Life” student video contest, held in conjunction with the National Association of Plant Breeders and the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of American and Soil Science Society of America. The 2018 contest theme was “Rumor Has It.” University students were asked to create videos to help set the record straight on a common misconception or myth associated with the seed industry and plant science. More

Extension and Outreach

Water Rocks! Reaches 36,000 Iowan Students
Water Rocks!, a youth education program on issues surrounding water led by ABE extension staff and faculty, recently published its 2017-18 Annual Evaluation Report. During the year, its programs were presented in 180 schools and 12 outdoor classrooms, reaching more than 36,000 students. Understanding of watershed identification increased dramatically after the programs, and 88 percent of teachers planned to hold follow-up discussions with students covering the materials and information. More

Webinar Explains New Conservation Campaigns for Soybean Growers
Iowa Learning Farms will host a webinar on Wednesday, Dec. 12, at 12 p.m. on “NoTillb4Beans and #CoverYourBeans. Mark Licht, agronomy, helped create the yearlong social media campaigns to spread the word about cover crop and no-till benefits for soybean growers. The campaigns highlight the potential for time and money savings with no-tillage and cover crops ahead of soybean. More

Cornbelt Cow-Calf Conference Scheduled for Jan. 26
The Cornbelt Cow-Calf Conference, organized by ISU Extension and Outreach and the Iowa Beef Center, is holding its annual conference on Jan. 26 in Ottumwa. The conference has provided timely, accurate and important information to the state’s beef cattle industry for more than 40 years. More

Beginning Farmer Center Seminar on Multigenerational Farm Transitions
The Beginning Farmer Center will offer a four-day Returning to the Farm seminar on Jan. 10-11 and Feb. 8-9 at the Gateway Hotel and Conference Center in Ames. The seminar provides an opportunity for farm families to begin developing a succession plan. More

Around the College

Charles Sukup Appointed to Faculty Position in ABE
Charles Sukup, president of Sukup Manufacturing Co. in Sheffield, Iowa, has been appointed to a faculty position in the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. Sukup, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural engineering from Iowa State in 1976 and 1982, began a five-year, part-time appointment this fall. More

Greiner Joins Animal Science Faculty
Laura Greiner has joined the animal science department as an assistant professor focused on swine issues. Her appointment includes teaching, research and extension. She is a CALS alum, receiving her undergraduate degree in animal science and her master’s and Ph.D. in animal nutrition. More

FundISU: Support Sought for CSRL Uganda Livestock Integration Program
The Center for Sustainable Rural Livelihoods has launched a crowdfunding campaign in support of the expansion of livestock production, improved animal health and increased animal-source foods in the Kamuli District of Uganda. The goal is $20,000 and the campaign runs through Dec. 28. More


Dec. 12: CARD to Announce Land Value Survey Results
Results of the 2018 ISU Land Value Survey will be announced at a news conference on Wednesday, 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

Communications Kiosk

Avoid Excessive Personalization of Inanimate Objects
There is no blanket rule against creating a possessive form for an inanimate object, particularly if the object is treated in a personified sense: death’s call, the wind’s murmur. In general, however, avoid excessive personalization of inanimate objects, and give preference to an “of” construction when it fits the makeup of the sentence: the rules of mathematics, the effects of measles. (Associated Press Stylebook, 2017 edition, pg. 428)


SoAR President Addresses Food Science Deficit and Need to Fund Ag Research
Thomas Grumbly, president of Supporters of Agricultural Research Foundation, addressed the food science deficit in an op-ed published in the Dec. 4 issue of The Hill. Grumbly writes: “The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 48 million people get sick from a foodborne illness, 128,000 are hospitalized and 3,000 die – every year. The only way to lower these numbers is to put science back on the menu, preferably seated at the head of the table. . . . Much has been made of the climate change impacts on agriculture, both domestically and overseas, and how more science is needed to help farmers as they keep feeding the world. Our food also needs to remain safe, and you could easily point to a dearth of science in food safety as our food supply chains grow ever more complex. In fact, agricultural research in all sectors has been woefully neglected. Too many innovations and breakthroughs have yet to be implemented, and even more are left inadequately explored as scientists have to spend more time trying to keep their labs funded than conducting actual research.” More

Virginia Tech to Host Global Agricultural Productivity Report
The Global Agricultural Productivity Report is a call to action, urging world leaders to invest in proven strategies to produce food, feed, fiber and biofuel in a sustainable manner to meet the demands and needs of a growing world. The report’s findings are presented each year to an international audience in Des Moines at the World Food Prize/Borlaug Dialogue. In previous years, the report was produced by the Global Harvest Initiative. The Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences will present the GAP Report in 2019. 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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