Issue: Summer Issue

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AN INTRODUCTION TO

WHAT I DID LAST SUMMER

AND SOME NEWS

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Check out today’s (Sept. 11) Inside Iowa State, the university faculty/staff newspaper, where there’s a story on interesting things that ISU faculty and staff did over the summer. We also asked departments in the College of Agriculture to send us examples of summer activities. Some are listed below. But first, here’s three news items:

DICKSON TO LEAD ISU FOOD SAFETY RESEARCH PROGRAM

Jim Dickson has been named professor-in-charge of the Food Safety Consortium at ISU. Dickson, the interim head of the Department of Microbiology, succeeds George Beran, who retired in June. The consortium is a research alliance of the University of Arkansas, which works on poultry; Iowa State, which works on pork; and Kansas State University, which works on beef.

AG COMM'S FIRST SESSION ON SEPT. 15

New faculty and teaching assistants are invited to an Ag Comm workshop on Tuesday, Sept. 15, noon to 1:30 p.m. in 8 Curtiss. This first session of the semester will provide background and benefits of Ag Comm, which is the college’s program to enhance communication skills across the curriculum. A light lunch will be served. The next Ag Online will list upcoming Ag Comm workshops.

BRENTON CENTER SERIES BEGINS SEPT. 16

A series of Brenton Center professional development workshops kicks off Wednesday, Sept. 16, with a session on the center’s services. Participants will learn how to use the center to develop and deliver credit and noncredit courses and events. The session will be held from 4:10 to 5 p.m. in 8 Curtiss.

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WHAT I DID LAST SUMMER

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MIDNIGHT IN THE CORNFIELD OF GOOD AND EAR-FULL

Paul Scott, agronomy/USDA, wandered through a cornfield with a lantern at midnight to collect samples for a study of the diurnal cycle of corn kernels.

SAYING YES TO NO-TILL AROUND THE WORLD

Tom Colvin, ag & biosystems engineering/USDA, spent a week in Zimbabwe working with the FAO on the internationalization of no-till farming.

GAUGING THE HEALTH OF IOWA LAKES

John Downing, animal ecology, studied the feasibility of restoring three Iowa lakes: Clear Lake, Rock Creek Lake and Crystal Lake.

FIRST STUDY-ABROAD TRIP TO CHINA

David Acker, international programs; Keith Whigham, agronomy; Mike Duffy, economics; Bernie White, biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology; and Connie Post, English, took 23 students to China. This was ISU’s first study-abroad program in that country.

WE HAVE THIS IDEA FOR A SEQUEL TO "TWISTER" . . .

Eugenia Farrar, zoology & genetics, spent her summer chasing thunderstorms in search of the plains spadefoot toad that breeds after heavy rains.

AN ENJOYABLE SUMMER WITH STUDENT RESEARCHERS

Sande McNabb, plant pathology/forestry, spent his 46th summer at ISU doing what he says he enjoys the most -- working with high school and undergraduate research interns and helping two graduate students finish their research and prepare their final written and oral presentations.

ADD THESE TO YOUR TO-DO LIST WHILE IN MONGOLIA

Bill Franklin, animal ecology, milked a mare, ate yak cheese and rode a camel in the Gobi Desert of Mongolia.

TALKING COMMUNITIES AT WHITE HOUSE WORKSHOP

Stephen Aigner, sociology, presented an invited workshop, "Measuring Your Community's Progress: Performance Measures Made Practical," at the White House Conference on Community Empowerment in July.

IDENTIFYING PLANT DISEASES FOR IOWANS

Paula Flynn, plant pathology, had a busy summer in the Plant Disease Clinic, evaluating more than 1,100 plant disease samples.

HORT STUDENTS SEE SCOTLAND

Gail Nonnecke and Nick Christian, horticulture, took 30 students to Scotland.

BIOLOGY FIELD TRIPS TO KENYA, COSTA RICA, AUSTRALIA

As part of the International Field Trips in Biology Program, Wayne Rowley, entomology, spent three weeks with 22 students in Kenya; Jim Raich, botany, spent two weeks with 20 students in Costa Rica; and Warren Dolphin, zoology & genetics, spent four weeks with 21 students in Australia. In those trips, the groups conducted field studies and introduced students to other cultures.

COLLECTING SHARK DNA — SOMEBODY’S GOTTA DO IT

Gavin Naylor, zoology & genetics, spent a month in India collecting DNA from sharks.

TEACHING SUMMER SESSION FOR THE FIRST TIME

Elwynn Taylor, agronomy, taught his first summer session courses. Both Agronomy 206 and Agronomy 541 were offered on videotape, and 28 students took advantage of the option.

RURAL INFRASTRUCTURE IN MOZAMBIQUE

Robert Mazur, sociology, spent two weeks in Zambezia, Mozambique, organizing activities related to a five-year project to rehabilitate rural infrastructure.

COLLECTING RARE CORN IN MEXICO

Ricardo Salvador, agronomy, and Virginia Walbot of Stanford University spent four weeks in Oaxaca, Mexico, collecting a rare corn grown by the Zapotec people of the region. They interviewed farmers regarding production and selection practices.

A HORTICULTURIST IN CHINA, AN AGRONOMIST IN FRANCE

Bill Graves, horticulture, conducted research and collected research materials in China. Michael Thompson, agronomy, conducted research on organomineral complexes at Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, Versailles, France.

COMPOSTING TOUR OF SOUTH KOREA

Clare Hinrichs, sociology, and Tom Richard, ag & biosystems engineering, took a research trip to South Korea to visit swine manure composting operations.

FAMILY SUPPORT IN IRELAND

Carolyn Cutrona, Institute for Social and Behavioral Research, presented a paper at the International Conference on Family Support in Disadvantaged Communities in Galway, Ireland. The conference was organized in response to growing concerns over child abuse and family disruption. (Divorce was recently legalized in Ireland.)

NEW AG ENGINEERING TIES IN EUROPE, AUSTRALIA

Graeme Quick, ag & biosystems engineering, helped establish contacts for exchange programs with Hohenheim University in Stuttgart, Germany, and the University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, and the University of South Australia, New Adelaide. He also worked on partnering arrangements with the Silsoe College at Cranfield University, England, during a rapid trip around the globe and he fit in some home leave in Australia.

SENIOR RESEARCH FELLOW IN NEW ZEALAND

Ken Moore, agronomy, was a senior research fellow at AgResearch Grasslands in Palmerston, North New Zealand, from January to June.

PROVIDING A RESEARCH OPPORTUNITY TO PALESTINIANS

Marit Nilsen-Hamilton and Richard Hamilton, biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, hosted two Palestinian students for six weeks. The students conducted research in their labs.

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY WORKSHOP IN SOUTH AFRICA

William Gutowski, agronomy, participated in a UNESCO-sponsored workshop, "Development of Science and Technology in Africa" in South Africa, and worked with African colleagues.

COMPUTING IN EDUCATION MEETING IN GERMANY

Doug Yarger, agronomy, presented a paper in Freiberg, Germany, at a conference sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education.

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