Issue: 1064

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
July 22, 2019

Top Stories

CALS Students in Rising Star Program Share Extension Experience
Whether it’s sharing gardening experiences, helping with a county fair or sharing nutrition tips, the ISU Rising Star Internship program helps students learn what it’s like to work in an extension office. (l-r) Natalee Dippel, a senior in agriculture and life sciences education, Alyssa Rosenbaum, junior in horticulture and food science, and Maddie Robinson, senior in human development and family studies, are working in a regional Extension office in northwest Iowa and taking part in activities covering a six-county area. The program is funded through CALS, ISU Extension and Outreach, and the Colleges of Design, Human Sciences and Liberal Arts and Sciences. More

Dean’s Tour Hits Southwest Iowa
Dean Robison’s summer tour across the state came to southwest Iowa last Thursday. At the ISU Armstrong Memorial Research and Demonstration Farm near Lewis, the Dean breakfasted with the board of directors of the Wallace Foundation for Rural Research and Development. He addressed attendees of the research farm’s field day, a program that also included Chad Hart, economics; Lie Tang, agricultural and biosystems engineering; and Erin Hodgson, entomology. He toured the research farm with superintendent Dallas Maxwell. He visited the Hitchcock Nature Center at Honey Creek, and learned more about the loess hills, the ISU Master Conservationist Program led by Adam Janke, natural resource ecology and management, and important partnerships between regional and county extension staff and county conservation leaders. The day ended with a reception with 50 alumni and friends at the Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha. Hosting the reception was Lisa (Tronchetti) Buckentine, a 2011 ag business alum, who is senior dairy merchandiser for Gavilon.


CALS Scientists Call for Unconventional Collaboration in Agriculture
ISU scientists, including Carolyn Lawrence-Dill, genetics, development and cell biology, and Patrick Schnable, Plant Sciences Institute, hope to connect researchers in various disciplines by encouraging wide collaboration to address agricultural challenges. The effort is part of the Genomes to Fields Initiative, which began in 2014 to make genomic data related to corn as widely available as possible. More

GDCB Researcher Receives Publication Grant
Dior Kelley, genetics, development and cell biology, recently received a research publication grant from the American Association of University Women. The $28,784 award will contribute to her team’s ability to publish research within six months of the grant year. Kelley’s research team specializes in researching natural hormones called auxins that help regulate many aspects of plant development. New findings were featured in the June issue of the journal MCP: Molecular and Cellular Proteomics. More

War on Soybean Gall Midge Continues
In 2016 and 2017, there were isolated reports of soybean injury by soybean gall midge in northwest Iowa. In 2018, there was significant field edge injury and economic loss in at least 65 counties throughout Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota and South Dakota. Erin Hodgson, entomology, has been researching the pest, trying to understand the life cycle. More

Results Available from Iowa Cow Systems Project
From 2015-2018, the Iowa Beef Center partnered with 28 producers across the state in the Iowa Cow Systems Project. It was designed to identify costs, environmental impacts and best practices from Iowa cow-calf operations. The project was originally funded by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and completed through the Iowa Nutrient Research Center. Final results of the project are available online. More

Teaching and Students

ISU Students Named to Pork Checkoff Student Social Forces Team
The Pork Checkoff has selected 13 college students to represent the #RealPigFarming Student Social Forces team, active from July to December. Three CALS students and one LAS student are part of the team: Morgan Fitzsimmons, a sophomore in agricultural and life sciences education; Cole Spain, junior in agricultural and life sciences education; Jake Sterle, junior in animal science; and Rachel Frazier, senior in public relations. More

CALS Graduate Students Host Field Day
The graduate students enrolled in Experience in Plant Science Extension and Outreach summer course are hosting a field day on Aug. 1, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Field Extension Education Laboratory near Boone. The students will talk about impacts of 2019 weather on crop conditions and disease and insect management. RSVP to the free field day by July 29. More

Where in the World is Caryn? CAST Blog Highlights CALS Student
Caryn Dawson, a senior in global resource systems and student administrative assistant with the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology, believes that to gain various agricultural perspectives, one must travel. Dawson was part of the Dean’s Global Agriculture and Food Leadership program and spent the early part of her summer working with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in Rome. She is now working as a farm and irrigation intern with the Henry’s Fork Foundation in Idaho, learning how to analyze data from center-pivot irrigation systems. More

Extension and Outreach

Statewide Farmland Leasing Meetings to Give 2020 Insight
Farm management specialists with ISU Extension and Outreach will hold more than 80 meetings around Iowa to discuss trends in land values and rental rates, conservation issues, farm bill topics and a look at the year ahead. Meetings begin July 29 and will be held throughout August. More

IPIC and Secure Pork Supply to Help Producers Prepare
Five workshops to help pork producers prepare for a foreign animal disease outbreak via the Secure Pork Supply plan will be available throughout Iowa starting July 29, hosted by the Iowa Pork Industry Center in collaboration with the Iowa Pork Producers Association and the Center for Food Security and Public Health. More

ISU McNay Memorial Research Farm to Hold Fall Field Day
The McNay Memorial Research and Demonstration Farm in south central Iowa will hold its annual fall field day on Aug. 6 beginning at 4:30 p.m. The discussion will focus on the growing season, pasture and weed management and grazing issues. More

Iowa Learning Farms Celebrates 15 Years
Iowa Learning Farms celebrated 15 years of serving the conservation and agricultural needs of Iowa during an event at Reiman Gardens July 11. Iowa Learning Farms is a hands-on education and outreach program for Iowa landowners and agricultural producers based with ISU Extension and Outreach. More

Helmers Reflects on Iowa Learning Farms’ 15 Years of Service
Matt Helmers, agricultural and biosystems engineering and director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center, reflected on the Iowa Learning Farms 15 year celebration in an ILF blog post on July 19. “We have all changed over the last 15 years, but a constant with ILF is that the program has continued to engage partners throughout the state, has continued to listen to Iowans both rural and urban, has continued to look for better ways to spread the message, and has and will continue to educate on new conservation practices.” More

Around the College

Coats Named Fellow in American Chemical Society
Joel Coats, entomology, has been named a fellow in the American Chemical Society. He was recognized specifically for his “pioneering research on the intersection of chemistry and the causation of biological activity and ecosystems responses,” and for training more than 50 graduate students and postdoctoral scientists. More

Takle Speaks on Climate Change on Iowa Press
Gene Takle, emeritus professor of agronomy, was a featured guest on the July 19 edition of Iowa Public TV’s Iowa Press program, which focused on climate change and its impact now and in the future in Iowa. “Our bigger problem is going to be moisture and humidity during the next two or three decades,” Takle said. “But as we move toward the middle of the current century, we're going to see a substantial rise in heat. The Midwest has been projected to have higher changes in extreme temperatures than any other region of the country.” More

MacDonald Wants Consumers to Understand Safety of GMO Foods
Ruth MacDonald, food science and human nutrition, is often asked if genetically modified foods are safe. In the summer issue of Fresh Pickings, published by the Iowa Food and Family Project, MacDonald highlights what she wants consumers to understand about the safety of GMO foods. More (back cover)

Pease on Creative Solutions to Water Quality Challenges
Jim Pease, emeritus natural resource ecology and management, developed an exercise designed to spark problem-solving creativity when it comes to water quality. Pease created this exercise for volunteers participating in Project AWARE, an annual weeklong river clean-up. On the July 17 edition of Talk of Iowa, hosted by Iowa Public Radio, Pease talks about his Project AWARE experience and the significant water quality challenges Iowa faces. More

Update on Third Floor of Curtiss Hall Renovation
The $2.3 million renovation project to the third floor of Curtiss Hall began in January. Project manager Kerry Dixon, facilities planning and management, reports that the demolition and rebuilding phases are complete, with painting and door and glass installation to begin this month. More


July 25: George Washington Carver Research Symposium
The George Washington Carver Summer Research Internship Symposium is scheduled for Thursday, July 25. Lightning presentations will be held 9:30 a.m. to noon in 368A Heady Hall. Poster presentations will be held 1 to 2:30 p.m. in Curtiss Hall, Harl Commons.

Aug. 15: Rural Development Symposium
Rural America includes every place that is not urban – from micropolitan areas with up to 50,000 residents to the smallest, unincorporated towns and open country. ISU is hosting a symposium on August 15 in Ames to explore the challenges facing these places and ways to build capacity and create support for rural development efforts. More

Communications Kiosk

Webex to Replace Zoom as Video Conferencing Platform
Beginning in the 2019-2020 academic year, Information Technology Services will begin offering university-wide access to Cisco Webex, the newest supported platform for video conferencing, private and large group meetings, and collaboration between university leaders, students and staff. The new resource comes at no additional cost due to a licensing agreement between ISU and Webex’s parent company Cisco Systems, which is also responsible for providing campus phone services. Access to Zoom will continue until the contract expires in March 2020. More

Workday Tip: Check Your Emergency Contacts
Be sure to update your emergency contact information in Workday. Information from AccessPlus was not converted.


Workday User Labs, July 22-Aug. 1
User Labs provide you with hands-on Workday assistance, whether it’s creating expense reports, entering time and absence requests or navigating employee self-service. They also provide an opportunity to ask questions about Workday.  Registration is not required; simply walk in. Upcoming User Lab dates, all to be held in 032 Parks Library:

  • Monday, July 22, 12 - 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 23, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 24, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
  • Thursday, July 25, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • Monday, July 29, 12 - 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 30, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 31, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
  • Thursday, August 1, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Greenlee Summit: Communications and Civility in Our Democracy
ISU’s Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication is hosting its second annual industry summit on Sept. 5-6. This year’s focus is on the relationship between communications, politics and civility. Speakers, panels and moderated discussions will identify how to foster civil discourse and emphasize that a commitment to civility leads to a more informed and productive society. More

Worker Protection Training Offered for Those Working with Pesticides
Worker Protection Standard training is once again available through Learn@ISU. Classes are offered twice a month and presented via Zoom webinar. These classes meet the annual training requirement for ISU employees working in areas where pesticides that have an “Agricultural Use Requirements” section on the product label have been applied within the last 30 days or a restricted entry interval has been in effect within the last 30 days. For more information contact Betsy Buffington at, 4-7293.

Antimicrobial Resistance Institute Featured in Visions Magazine
In July 2018, Iowa State was competitively selected to host the new National Institute of Antimicrobial Resistance Research and Education. Led by executive director Paul Plummer, veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine, the institute is located in the ISU Research Park. An article in the summer issue of Visions magazine, published by the ISU Alumni Association, looks at the issue of antimicrobial resistance and the work of the national institute. More

World Hunger Continues to Increase
An estimated 820 million people did not have enough to eat in 2018, up from 811 million in the previous year, which is the third year of increase in a row, according to the annual State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World report, released July 15 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. More 


RAGBRAI 2019 Underway: Farmers Talking to Consumers
In the summer 2019 issue of Fresh Pickings, published by the Iowa Food and Family Project, Brent Swart, a soybean and corn farmer from Spencer who has ridden RAGBRAI for more than a decade, said the ride is a perfect way to combine his love of cycling with his passion for agriculture. “As farmers, we sometimes struggle with how to connect with consumers,” says Swart. “But for a week ever year, those consumers come to us. It’s priceless. Not very often do we have an opportunity to talk to thousands of people who may not know very much about farming.” More (pg. 12-15)

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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