Issue: 1051

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
April 22, 2019

Top Stories

Medallion Ceremony for Dean Robison this Wednesday, April 24
Faculty, staff and students are welcome to attend the medallion ceremony for Daniel J. Robison, CALS Endowed Dean’s Chair, to be held Wednesday, April 24, at 4 p.m. in the Dolezal Auditorium, Curtiss Hall. A reception will follow in Harl Commons. More RSVP to the ISU Foundation at 4-2447 or

ABE’s Maier Leads Consortium to Reduce Post-Harvest Loss and Food Waste
The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research, The Rockefeller Foundation and ISU launched the Consortium for Innovation in Post-Harvest Loss and Food Waste Reduction at the 2019 Iowa International Outreach Symposium, on April 17. Dirk Maier, agricultural and biosystems engineering, is director of the new consortium. Food loss and waste thought leaders and experts from across the globe will work in tandem with industry and nonprofit organizations to address social, economic and environmental impacts from food loss and waste. More 


Animal Science Research Looks at Reducing Allergy-like Reactions to Cheese
A small percentage of humans suffer allergy-like reactions to certain varieties of ripened cheese due to histamine, a by-product of the prolonged fermentation process. Stephan Schmitz-Esser, animal science, led a new study, published in "Scientific Reports," that looks closely at the microbial communities that develop in cheese rinds, and the research could pave the way to improved cheese production techniques that cut down on the compound that causes those reactions. More 

Sociology Research: What Will Shape Voter Attitudes for 2020?
New research from sociology professors Ann Oberhauser, Daniel Krier and Abdi Kusow finds that rurality, education and race, not economic concerns, significantly predicted the change from Democrat to Republican in 2016. More

Teaching and Students

Poultry Interest Group Places in Top Ten at National Poultry Contest
Four students in Block and Bridle’s Poultry Interest Group competed at the USPOULTRY Foundation’s Ted Cameron National Poultry Judging Contest, held April 3-5 at Louisiana State University. The team received first place high team in production and ninth overall. Madison Sexton, a freshman in animal science, place first high individual in production. Team members consisted of the following animal science students: Emma Mannery, freshman; William Mengler, senior; Sexton; and Madison Willkomm, freshman. Head coach is Cameron Hall, animal science; assistant coach is Victoria Mason, a senior in animal science and a 2018 team member.

CSA Shares Still Available from Good Earth Student Farm
Good Earth Student Farm is a small, sustainable-focused community supported agriculture farm. By purchasing a paid-share or a work-share, customers can receive one box of produce every week through the growing season, which extends from June through mid-October. Deadline to sign up is May 1. More

Extension and Outreach

Guide Helps Compare Toxicity in Lawn and Garden Chemicals
ISU Extension and Outreach has developed a chart of the toxicity of common lawn, garden and ornamental chemicals used to control insects, weeds and pathogens in Iowa. Mark Shour, entomology, said the chart compares the toxicity of nearly 60 insecticides, 38 herbicides and 37 fungicides in easy-to-understand terms. More 

Around the College

Agronomist Talks about Soil Loss from the Midwest Floods
Mahdi Al-Kaisi, agronomy, co-authored a recent article for The Conversation on the effect of soil loss from flooding. “As devastating images of the 2019 Midwest floods fade from view, an insidious and longer-term problem is emerging across its vast plains: The loss of topsoil that much of the nation’s food supply relies on,” wrote Al-Kaisi. “Long after the rains stop, floodwaters continue to impact soil’s physical, chemical and biological properties that all plants rely on for proper growth.” More

Join Horticulture Mailing List for Updates on Produce
The Horticulture Research Station has started a mailing list for notifications about the sale of fruits and vegetables from its farm. All of the produce is locally grown in conditions exceeding industry standards. Produce is harvested the day before delivery. Sales support ongoing research at the site. The link to sign up for the newsletter is at the bottom of the page. More

CALS P&T Workshops Scheduled for Associate and Assistant Professors
A promotion and tenure workshop for associate professors will be held April 30 at 12:10 to 1:30 p.m. in 142 Curtiss Hall. RSVP to Carla Persaud ( by April 22 to register. The workshop will include expectations, comments from department chairs, and time for questions and open discussion. A P&T workshop for assistant professors will be held May 2 at 12:10 to 1:30 p.m. in 142 Curtiss Hall. RSVP to Carla Persaud ( by April 26 to register. The workshop will include expectations, definition of scholarship, portfolio preparation and development, and time for questions and open discussion.

Youngs Named Honorary Member of Golden Key
Curt Youngs, animal science, was recognized for his commitment to students by being named an honorary member of the Golden Key International Honour Society by members of the ISU Chapter. Golden Key is the world’s largest collegiate honor society that focuses on academics, leadership and service.

Hoff: The Students are What I’ll Remember Most
With 29 years of experience at ISU, Steve Hoff, agricultural and biosystems engineering, defines his work by the skills and knowledge he has shared with his students. In “Ask a Cyclone Engineer,” he reflects on his career prior to retiring in July 2019. More

CALS Part of Effort to Commemorate State Park Centennial
In anticipation of the 100th anniversary of Iowa state parks in 2020, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the Iowa Arts Council and ISU are bringing 20 artists to 20 state parks this summer. From April through August 2019, faculty and graduate student artists from CALS, the College of Design and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences will each be matched with a state park, creating artwork that reflects their time as artists-in-residence. More 


April 24: ISU Sustainable Agriculture Colloquium
The Sustainable Agriculture Graduate Program will present the Iowa State Sustainable Agriculture Colloquium on Wednesday, April 24, in the Memorial Union Sun Room. Sara Straate, seed historian with the Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, will present “Saving Seeds: From Backyards to Seed Vaults,” at 3:10 to 4:15 p.m. Research poster viewing and refreshments will be available before and after the presentation – 2:45 to 3:10 p.m. and 4:15 to 4:45 p.m. More

April 29: Seed Science Center Presentation
The Seed Science Center will host a presentation by Alan Taylor on April 29 at 10 a.m. in 106 Seed Science. Taylor is a professor of seed science technology at Cornell University. He will present “Advancements on Seed Treatments and Coatings.” More

May 3: Scholarship Administrators Appreciation Open House
CALS faculty and staff who help administer scholarships and acknowledge donors are invited to join college leadership and the development team for an open house on Friday, May 3, 8:30 to 10 a.m. in the Curtiss Hall ground floor rotunda. Refreshments will be provided.

Communications Kiosk

Create Dramatic Tension When Telling Scientific Stories
A well-told story can be extremely powerful – it captures attention, inspires others and can even lead to action. 3M’s Scientists as Storytellers Guide includes how five celebrated communicators tell scientific stories. Create dramatic tension is the second tip by Captain Scott Kelly, retired NASA astronaut. “Everybody loves a good story,” he said. “And the best stories start with a challenge, followed by a journey…that leads to meeting that challenge head on. Create dramatic tension, and you’ll have them hooked,” said Kelly. (Part 2 – 3M Scientists as Storytellers Guide, 2019, pg. 8)


Senior Seeks to Discover Why College Was So Expensive
Brandon Beecham, an honors student with a double major in accounting and finance, collected, charted and analyzed all university accounts from 1990 to 2018, in five-year intervals, to track changes and identify trends in an effort to discover why college was so expensive. He attributes his research topic to his fascination with financial statements and his student debt. The trends Beecham identified didn’t surprise him, he said, though the gravity of a few of them did. More

ISU Celebrating World Intellectual Property Day April 26
ISU is celebrating World Intellectual Property Day on Friday, April 26, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the Parks Library lawn. The event will highlight important innovations developed by ISU researchers and include a sampling of food products developed with ISU inventions. More

NIH Associate Director to Speak on Sexual Harassment and Gender Equality May 1
Carrie Wolinetz, acting chief of staff and associate director for the office of science policy at the National Institutes of Health, will speak May 1, 4 to 5 p.m. in 206 Durham. She will present, "We can do better, We must do better: Update on NIH efforts to combat sexual harassment." The event is free and open to the public. More

New Service Helps Faculty Create ISU Website
ISU Sites is a new service that allows faculty members to quickly create a professional website that conforms to university marketing standards and complies with digital accessibility guidelines. Development was supported by CALS, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Information Technology Services. More  


Early Lessons in Integrated Pest Management
In the April 2019 issue of Wallaces Farmer, Clark McGrath, research and extension coordinator with the Iowa Soybean Research Center, shares with readers some early lessons he received in integrated pest management and pest resistance management. As a teenager he had a job walking beans that transitioned into using a bean buggy. 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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