Issue: 1150

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Online
April 12, 2021

Top Stories

Celebrate ISU Extension and Outreach Week, April 12-17
ISU Extension and Outreach Week is April 12-17. Iowa’s 100 county extension offices will host activities throughout the week to thank Iowans for their support of extension efforts throughout the state. “The challenges of the past year changed how ISU Extension and Outreach serves Iowans, but not why: We want a strong Iowa. We are here for you now and always,” said John Lawrence, vice president for extension and outreach. More

More than $2 Million in Private Gifts for New Turkey Facility
Animal science has received commitments of more than $2 million in private donations for Iowa State’s new Turkey Teaching and Research Facility. A groundbreaking was held April 8 for the facility, which will be constructed north of the Robert T. Hamilton Poultry Teaching and Research Farm. The Turkey Teaching and Research Facility will provide a living classroom for hands-on learning in modern production practices, flexible space and state-of-the-art equipment for research that addresses current challenges facing the turkey industry. More


CARD Data Sets Available for Researchers
The Center for Agricultural and Rural Development has built and maintained weather and U.S. geospatial data sets for use with research. Weather data sets include PRISM Climate Data, Gridded Meteorological Data and Multivariate Adaptive Constructed Analogs. Other data sets include Gridded Soil Survey Geographic. Contact Yongjie Ji ( for more information.

Spacing Can Improve Crop Yields when Using Cover Crops
Alison Robertson, plant pathology and microbiology, discusses findings from her research on potential benefits of spacing cereal rye cover crop plantings from corn crop seedlings in “Can corn benefit from social distancing?” in Corn and Soybean Digest. More

New Study Tracks Sandhill Cranes in Iowa
Last year, four cranes were fitted with GPS transmitters to learn more about this protected species’ habitat use, migration routes and overwintering sites. Despite all being caught in a relatively small area, each crane seemed to have different strategies when it came to where and how they wintered. The pilot project is led by Robert Klaver, affiliate professor in natural resource ecology and management, in partnership with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. More

Pandemic-related Anxiety Associated with Women Drinking
A new study by Susan Stewart, sociology, published in the Journal of Gynecology and Women’s Health found that nearly two-thirds of female participants reported drinking more since the beginning of the pandemic. More

Teaching and Students

Undergraduate Students Share Research Nationally
The 34th annual National Conference on Undergraduate Research takes place online today through Wednesday, April 12-14. Sixty Iowa State students will share their research and scholarship with their peers from across the nation, including the following students with CALS majors: Lauren Bilek and Darcy Bonds, horticulture; Kathryn Burda, Megan Carty, William Crow, Katherine Flatt, Candide Mafuta, Jennifer Ortiz, Madison Porter, Toni Sleugh, Reed Tisdell, Elke Windschitl and William Winnett, biology; Sasha Celada and Lexie O’Brien, microbiology; Celeste Chadwick, food science;  Megan Davis, Haley Dostalik and Sau Qwan Yap, genetics; Christa Heffern, animal science; Chase Krug, agronomy; Paiton McDonald, agricultural biochemistry and international agriculture; Jayna Misra and Elizabeth Smith, environmental science; and Paola Soto Mendez, animal ecology. More

Block and Bridle Club to Host Animal Learning Day on April 17
The Block and Bridle Club will hold its annual Animal Learning Day on Saturday, April 17, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. The event is free and provides an opportunity for the public to learn about animals in agriculture. Face coverings and social distancing required. More

Extension and Outreach

Early Planting is Possible as Soils Continue to Warm
Warm soil temperatures may offer an early start to spring planting, but agronomists with ISU Extension and Outreach say to be cautious as the risk of a cold snap is far from over. More

Soil Health Videos to Be Shown during April 14 Webinar
A showcase of the videos submitted to the Cyclone Soil Health Sweepstakes contest will be shown during the Iowa Learning Farms webinar on Wednesday, April 14, at noon. The sweepstakes invited current students at Iowa State to form a team and produce an original three-to-five minute video that demonstrates the importance of soil health to a specified audience. More

Preparing Iowa Veterans for Careers in Food and Agriculture
ISU Extension and Outreach is partnering with Veterans in Agriculture to offer integrated resources for apprenticeships, including on-the-job training and required technical instruction, mentorship and facilitated workshops. More

Around the College

Finalist Announced for Associate Dean for Personnel and Finance
Following a college-wide search, the 26-member search committee for the Associate Dean for Personnel and Finance recommended that Ruth MacDonald be advanced to the interview stage of the process. MacDonald currently serves as professor and chair of the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Iowa State University. Details about the public forum to be held April 23, MacDonald’s application materials, a position description and feedback form are available online

CALS Alumni Honored for Distinguished Service
CALS and the ISU Alumni Association presented awards to the 2020 class of distinguished honorees during a virtual ceremony on April 7. CALS awardees are below. More

  • Floyd Andre Award – Jeff Plagge (’78 agricultural business), superintendent of banking for the Iowa Division of Banking.
  • George Washington Carver Distinguished Service Award – Dewayne Goldmon (PhD ’91 agronomy), senior advisor for racial equity to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.
  • Henry A. Wallace Award – Roger Carlsson (’78 agricultural business), founder and chairman of First Continental Trading Group of Companies.
  • Henry A. Wallace Award – Betsy Freese (’84 agricultural journalism), executive editor for Meredith Agrimedia and Successful Farming magazine.
  • Outstanding Young Professional Award – Colin Hurd (’13 agricultural studies), strategic initiatives manager for Raven Industries.

Clark Featured on Cover of Cheese Connoisseur
Stephanie Clark, food science and human nutrition, is featured in the spring 2021 issue of Cheese Connoisseur. Clark shares her passion for dairy with her students while making a difference in the industry. More

Animal Science Announces Associate Chair of Teaching
Jodi Sterle, undergraduate teaching coordinator and Eldred Harman Endowed Professor in Teaching and Learning, will serve a four-year appointment as the associate chair of teaching in the Department of Animal Science. More

Meat Lab to Expand Programming after Pandemic Shutdown
The pandemic forced the ISU Meats Laboratory to limit many of its usual operations for several months last year, but the laboratory has found innovative new ways to feed Iowans and continue its mission. Now, the laboratory is gradually returning to normal operations and even planning to expand its programming. More

CALS Term Faculty Advancement Virtual Workshop
A workshop for term faculty seeking advancement will be held April 29 from 10:30 a.m. to noon via Zoom (taped for future viewing). RSVP to Carla Persaud ( by April 26 to register. The workshop will discuss criteria for advancement, document preparation and development, and time for questions.
CALS P&T/Faculty Advancement Virtual Mirroring Session
CALS assistant professors, associate professors and term faculty seeking advancement are invited to attend this open discussion meeting held April 30 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. via WebEx (NOT taped). RSVP to Carla Persaud ( by April 28 to register.


April 12: Hertz Lecture on Emerging Issues in Agriculture
The Carl and Marjory Hertz Lecture on Emerging issues in Agriculture will be held today, April 12 at 7 p.m. The presenter will be virtual – guests may watch online or in the Memorial Union Sun Room. Dhamu Thamodaran (’83 PhD agricultural economics), retired executive vice president, chief strategy officer and chief commodity hedging officer for Smithfield Foods, will present “Emerging Issues in Global Markets and Trade.” More

April 15: Iowa Learning Farms Virtual Field Day
A virtual field day on cover crops, their management and impacts on water quality in Iowa, will feature Iowa Nutrient Research Center Director Matt Helmers and ISU Extension and Outreach Cropping Systems Specialist Mark Licht, April 15, at 1:00 p.m. More

Communications Kiosk

Like vs. As
Use like as a preposition to compare nouns and pronouns. It requires an object: Jim blocks like a pro. The conjunction as is the correct word to introduce clauses: Jim blocks the linebacker as he should. (Associated Press Stylebook, 2019 edition, pg. 169)


Farm Journal Foundation Speaker Series Begins April 14
Iowa State is partnering with the Farm Journal Foundation to offer a speaker series design to engage college students, future voters, consumers and community leaders in a dialogue on how to feed a growing world population through modern agriculture. The first session, “You Are What You Eat: The Intersection of Agriculture, Nutrition and Health,” is Wednesday, April 14, 1:30 to 3 p.m. via Zoom. Registration is available online.

First Amendment Days Focuses on Protest
Iowa State’s First Amendment Days is a weeklong celebration of First Amendment freedoms – religion, speech, press, assembly and petition. The 2021 theme is “Some Assembly Required” with a special focus on protest. Events run April 12-16 and are all virtual. More


Earth Week Chalk Challenge Opens April 16
Artists of every age may participate in the Earth Week Chalk Challenge beginning Friday, April 16. The contest is meant to encourage everyone to get outside and express their love of nature during Earth Week through creating chalk drawings. The challenge is sponsored by Water Rocks! 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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