Issue: 92

COLLEGE NEWS

- Nearly 800 attend MANRRS conference

- Funds available for college computer needs

- International perspectives on ISU at April 7 meeting

- Food for thought: Iowa menus at Iowa institutions

- New address for AAEA business office

- Gamma Sigma Delta banquet tickets still available

- Portfolios topic of annual college in-service

- Water cycle software available on the Net

- Critical thinking: Next Ag Comm workshop

- Travel to the North Central Teaching Workshop

- Aldo Leopold to be honored in April

- Tenth Science in Agriculture Day on April 21

- Ninety attend Animal Agriculture Career Day

- Deadlines & Reminders

COMMUNICATIONS KIOSK

- USDA Agriculture Fact Book on the Web

INFOGRAZING

- Deadline April 15 for ISU Bioethics Institute

EXTERNAL VOICES

- The reunification of learning

MARGINALIA

- Plastic flamingos draw birds to Everglades

C O L L E G E N E W S

NEARLY 800 ATTEND MANRRS CONFERENCE

The 13th annual Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and

Related Sciences national conference underway in Des Moines may

end up attracting more than 800 participants. Students from around

the country were still registering this morning, according to

Mary de Baca, conference coordinator. On Thursday, 425 conferees

attended George Washington Carver Day activities on campus, which

consisted of a program, panel discussion and tours of departments.

Today there will be workshops and a career fair, with more workshops

and competitions planned for Saturday. USDA officials Jim Lyons,

Miley Gonzalez and Pearlie Reed are scheduled to speak.

FUNDS AVAILABLE FOR COLLEGE COMPUTER NEEDS

The college's technology advancement committee is seeking proposals

that address needs for computer hardware, software, upgrading

costs and security that directly benefit computer-based instruction.

The college has approximately $25,000 from student computer fees

for the program. Proposal deadline is April 17. For more information:

Gaylan Scofield, 4-0045 or ggs@iastate.edu.

INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES ON ISU AT APRIL

7 MEETING

The Phi Beta Delta spring meeting will examine

ISU through the eyes of international students and scholars. The

panel discussion will be held Tuesday, April 7, 3:30-5 p.m. in

the Oak Room, Memorial Union. The panel, which will include Ebby

Luvago, ag business adviser, and Erda Wang, agricultural economist,

will talk about their experiences at ISU and their perceptions

of the university's commitment to internationalization. For more

information: Norma Wolff, nhwolff@iastate.edu.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: IOWA MENUS AT IOWA INSTITUTIONS

Does it make economic sense for Iowa institutions to buy, prepare

and serve Iowa-grown and processed foods? If so, how do they develop

a local food supply system? Those topics will be discussed Wednesday,

April 8, at a 1:30 p.m. meeting in 260 Scheman, sponsored by the

Leopold Center. Speaking will be Gary Valen, who created a project

that provided locally grown food for a college cafeteria in Conway,

Ark. The program, which is open to the public, grew out of the

Leopold Center's all-Iowa meals at its conference last summer.

Food-service personnel from colleges, hospitals and conference

centers, as well as producers, are expected to attend. For more

information: Rich Pirog, 4-3711.

NEW ADDRESS FOR AAEA BUSINESS OFFICE

The American Agricultural Economics Association's business office

has a new address: 415 South Duff, Suite C. All phone and fax

numbers remain the same. Mail will continue to be delivered via

the campus mail system.

GAMMA SIGMA DELTA BANQUET TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE

Tickets are still available for the Gamma Sigma Delta banquet,

April 15, Sun Room, Memorial Union. Contact your department liaison

or Sande McNabb, 4-3120, or Robert Martin, 4-0896. Signe Betsinger,

professor emeritus, University of Minnesota, will speak on sustainable

agriculture.

PORTFOLIOS TOPIC OF ANNUAL COLLEGE IN-SERVICE

The use of portfolios as an assessment tool will be the topic

of the annual College of Agriculture spring in-service on May

5, 5:30-7:30 p.m. The featured speaker will be Leverne Barrett,

University of Nebraska, who is a national leader in developing

strategies for the effective use of portfolios for assessment

purposes. Note that the date of the in-service is during final

exams. This is in response to faculty suggestions from last year.

More details on the program will be provided later. For more information:

Jim Dyer, 4-8363 or jdyer@iastate.edu.

WATER CYCLE SOFTWARE AVAILABLE ON THE NET

A self-contained animated software program illustrating the water

cycle is available on the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture's

web page (http://www.leopold.iastate.edu). The free downloadable

software is available in both PC and Macintosh formats. The software

was created for the College of Agriculture's water quality display

at the 1997 Iowa State Fair. The Leopold Center funded additional

work to make the program available via the Internet to educators,

youth groups and anyone interested in information about water.

For more information: 4-3711 or leocenter@iastate.edu.

CRITICAL THINKING: NEXT AG COMM WORKSHOP

The next Ag Comm workshop will address "Using Critical Thinking:

Acknowledging the Role of Argument in Technical Text." Rebecca

Burnett, English, and Robert Martin, agriculture education and

studies, will be the presenters. It will be held at noon, April

21, in 8 Curtiss. If you plan to attend, contact Norma Hensley,

4-6614 or nhensley@iastate.edu.

TRAVEL TO THE NORTH CENTRAL TEACHING WORKSHOP

An ISU van will take interested college faculty to the annual

North Central Teaching Symposium, May 19-21, at the University

of Illinois. Contact Norma Hensley, 4-6614 or nhensley@iastate.edu

to reserve a spot. ISU will host the conference next year.

ALDO LEOPOLD TO BE HONORED IN APRIL

The 50th anniversary of the death of ecologist and Iowa native

Aldo Leopold will be commemorated April 21-22 at ISU. The Leopold

Center is organizing several free activities that are open to

the public. Curt Meine, a Leopold biographer, will present a program

at 7:30 p.m., April 21, at the Scheman Building. On April 22,

an oak tree will be planted in Leopold's honor at an 11 a.m. ceremony

near Curtiss Hall. At noon, Meine will present a second program

in the Sun Room, Memorial Union. For more information: 4-3711

or leocenter@iastate.edu.

TENTH SCIENCE IN AGRICULTURE DAY ON APRIL 21

The 10th ISU's "Science in Agriculture Day" will be

held April 21. The event gives high school students a chance to

learn how science interacts with agriculture. Students choose

to attend three of about 20 sessions offered. Some session titles

include: "Plant-eating Fungi," "Agronomy Private

Eye," "Soil--Take a Look, It's Alive!," Insect

Sex Pheromones," "Farming for Fun and Profit" and

"Little Things Mean a Lot: Microscopy and You." For

more information: Sherry Pogranichniy, 4-3273.

NINETY ATTEND ANIMAL AGRICULTURE CAREER DAY

Ninety students attended the Animal Agriculture Career Day on

March 30.

The event was sponsored by the Block & Bridle Club in conjunction

with the "Experience Iowa State" program.

DEADLINES & REMINDERS

April 2-4: MANRRS National Conference, Des Moines

April 6: Extension Commodity Leaders Forum, Scheman, 4-7801.

April 8: Institutional Buying of Locally Produced Foods, 260 Scheman,

1:30 p.m., 4-3711.

April 13: Deadline, ISU Council on International Programs grant

applications, 4-8454.

April 15: Deadline, ISU Bioethics Institute applications, 4-0054.

April 17: Preregistration deadline, "Is It Ethical to Increase

World Food Production," Earth Week ISU Bioethics Symposium,

April 25, 4-0343.

April 21: Science in Agriculture Day, 4-3273.

C O M M U N I C A T I O N S K I O S K

USDA AGRICULTURE FACT BOOK AVAILABLE ON THE

WEB

The USDA's latest version of its "Agriculture

Fact Book" is available in Adobe Acrobat "pdf"

format on the Web. The book is a compendium of facts presented

in thumbnail essays, charts, tables and maps that discuss various

aspects of U.S. agriculture. The 265-page book can be found at:

http://www.usda.gov/news/pubs/fbook97/contents.htm

I N F O G R A Z I N G

DEADLINE APRIL 15 FOR ISU BIOETHICS INSTITUTE

April 15 is the deadline for applications to the ISU Bioethics

Institute, May 10-14, Gateway Holiday Inn. All participants receive

a $500 faculty development award. For more information: Gary Comstock,

4-0054 or comstock@iastate.edu.

E X T E R N A L V O I C E S

THE REUNIFICATION OF LEARNING

Harvard scientist Edward O. Wilson sees a

return to "consilience" or the unity of knowledge. He

says consilience, the ideal of the Renaissance and Enlightenment,

has been largely abandoned. "American colleges and universities

have dissolved their curricula into a slurry of minor disciplines

and specialized courses. While the average number of undergraduate

courses per institution has doubled, the percentage of mandatory

courses in general education has dropped by more than half."

Wilson wants every college student, and every public official,

to be able to answer this question: What is the relation between

science and the humanities, and how is it important for human

welfare? "The vast majority of our political leaders are

trained primarily or exclusively in the social sciences and the

humanities, and have little or no knowledge of the natural sciences.

The same is true of public intellectuals, columnists, media interrogators

and think-tank gurus. The best of their analyses are careful and

responsible . . . but the substantive base of their wisdom is

fragmented and lopsided." And what exactly is "consilience"?

It is literally a "jumping together" of knowledge as

a result of the linking of facts and fact-based theory across

disciplines to create a common groundwork of explanation. (Atlantic

Monthly, March)

M A R G I N A L I A

PLASTIC FLAMINGOS DRAW BIRDS TO EVERGLADES

Researchers in Florida enlisted an army of 150 plastic pink flamingos,

painting the birds white to better approximate the species they're

studying, and then planted them in ponds adjacent to the Everglades.

By varying the number of dummy birds, researchers are testing

how important having company is in making a pond attractive to

species like wood storks and white ibises, both now in decline.

They've found that having a lawn flamingo nearby is for some birds

as attractive and comforting as it is to humans who plant them

in their front yards. (New York Times, Feb. 24)

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