Issue: 1166

CALS Online and Dean’s Message
Aug. 2, 2021

Dean’s Message

A short note today as the summer zooms to a finish. The Iowa State Fair is upon us, lots of us are enjoying vacation, there is plenty of prep work underway as the semester looms, and some of us have an uneasy feeling of what’s next with the pandemic. That’s more than enough to fill our days and minds. Given all the disruptions of the past 18 months, you may not have had the change to do the following on campus… More

Top Story

CALS Scientists Involved in New $20 Million AI Institute
The researchers behind a new artificial intelligence institute say their work can accelerate the productivity and sustainability of agriculture. The National Science Foundation and USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture are supporting the researchers’ idea with a five-year, $20 million grant to establish an Artificial Intelligence Institute for Resilient Agriculture based at Iowa State. Baskar Ganapathysubramanian, mechanical engineering, will lead the institute. Team members from CALS departments are listed below. More

  • Management Team – Carolyn Lawrence-Dill, genetics, development and cell biology; Patrick Schnable, Arti Singh and Asheesh Singh, agronomy.
  • Artificial Intelligence Team – Daniel Nettleton and Yumou Qiu, statistics.
  • Data-Driven Agriculture Team – Sotirios Archontoulis, Schnable, Singh and Singh, agronomy; and Lawrence-Dill, GDCB.
  • Adoption Team – Shawn Dorius, sociology and criminal justice.
  • Education and Outreach Team – Ajay Nair, horticulture.


Grant Supports Research to Strengthen Poultry Immune Response
A new $500,000 award from USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture will support an Iowa State study on the immune system and intestinal microbiome of broiler chickens, with a goal of controlling coccidiosis and associated diseases that plague the poultry industry. Elizabeth Bobeck and Stephan Schmitz-Esser, animal science, will lead the three-year project along with fellow researchers in the department, as part of a national NIFA focus on animal health and disease. More

Fulbright Scholar Works to Resolve Ammonia Emissions and its Negative Effects
David Kelleghan, a Fulbright Scholar visiting Iowa State from Dublin, Ireland, is working under the guidance of Richard Gates, director of the Egg Industry Center and endowed professor in the departments of agricultural and biosystems engineering and animal science, to resolve ammonia emissions from poultry, swine and the land spreading of cattle slurry and its negative effects. More

Teaching and Students

Monarch Butterfly Research Publication Receives Award
A research publication by Niranjana Krishnan, a recent Iowa State graduate in toxicology, has won recognition as the best article of 2020 in the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. More

Extension and Outreach

Report Compares Carbon Credit Programs
A new report from ISU Extension and Outreach compares the differences among carbon credit and incentive programs offered in Iowa. Alejandro Plastina, economics, compared 11 private voluntary programs across 26 characteristics in How to Grow and Sell Carbon Credits in U.S. Agriculture. More

Iowa State’s Prairie Strip Project Featured on Local News
Matt O’Neal, entomology, spoke about Iowa State’s prairie strip project for a July 27 issue of We Are Iowa news. The project started 17 years ago with the goal of using prairies to help reduce environmental damage. More

Around the College

Rosentrater Receives BBI’s Award of Excellence
Kurt Rosentrater, agricultural and biosystems engineering and executive director of the Distillers Grains Technology Council, is the 2021 recipient of BBI International’s Award of Excellence. He is recognized for important contributions to the fuel ethanol industry through research, technical advisory and development activities. More

Seed Science Center to Lead Training Effort in Philippines
The Seed Science Center will lead a training program this year to develop seed systems and spur agricultural biotechnology applications in the Philippines. Sponsored by USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service, the training program is aimed at enhancing the capacity of Filipino scientists, policymakers, senior technical officers and middle-level managers of national seed and biotech authorities. More

Register by Aug. 6 to Volunteer for College BBQ
Faculty and staff volunteers are needed for the CALS barbecue, to be held Sept. 4 at the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. Approximately 500 CALS alumni and friends are expected to attend this year’s event, which will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., prior to the ISU vs. UNI football game (kick-off is 3 p.m.). Complimentary lunch, parking and shuttle to the stadium will be provided. The first 20 volunteers who register will receive a CALS barbecue t-shirt in thanks for their service. Register to volunteer online or by contacting Haley Cook ( by Aug. 6. Volunteer opportunities include the following:

  • Registration/Greeting (10:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., 12:15 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
  • Beverage service (10:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., 12:15 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
  • Tear down (2-3 p.m.)


Aug. 3: McNay Research Farm Field Day
The annual field day at McNay Memorial Research and Demonstration Farm near Chariton will be held Tuesday, Aug. 3. Topics will include applied research projects as well as an overview of the farm and the cow herd. More

Aug. 4: Iowa Learning Farms Webinar
The Iowa Learning Farms webinar on Wednesday, Aug. 4, at noon will discuss research on the optimization of manure nutrient use to facilitate crop production. More

Aug. 24: Meals for the Heartland
The Iowa Soybean Research Center is hosting a Meals from the Heartland packaging event on Aug. 24 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. Graduate student, staff and faculty volunteers are sought to help package 20,000 meals. Sign up is available online.


ISU Lectures Now Online
The Iowa State Library has completed a grant project funded by the National Recording Preservation Foundation to digitize and provide online access to 991 recordings from the ISU Lecture Series. The recordings, which span the 1970s to the 1990s, were selected based on their significant cultural, historical and aesthetic value, as well as timeliness with respect to topics that the country is grappling with today. More

A Renewed U.S. Commitment to International Education
The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education issued a joint statement of principles on July 26 articulating a renewed U.S. commitment to international education. “The robust exchange of students, researchers, scholars and educators, along with broader international education efforts between the United States and other countries, strengthens relationships between current and future leaders. These relationships are necessary to address shared challenges, enhance American prosperity and contribute to global peace and security.” More


IPPC Launches Tenderloin Trail 2.0
The Iowa Pork Producers Association has launched version 2.0 of its Iowa Tenderloin Trail. There are 14 trail stops around the state featuring a breaded pork tenderloin. Earn 10 stamps in your passport within 24 months to earn an “I Conquered the Iowa Tenderloin Trail 2.0” t-shirt. 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 Thursday.


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