October 2016

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story ideas and submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story ideas and submissions are welcome. Send them to cfaesmonthly@osu.edu.

  1. Four CFAES faculty honored as Distinguished Professors of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

    CFAES has selected environmental economist Elena Irwin, plant pathologist Sally Miller, food scientist Devin Peterson, and chemical engineer Judit Puskas as its inaugural Distinguished Professors of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The title was bestowed on a competitive basis to four full professors who have excelled in teaching, research, or outreach and engagement. Their work also must have significantly impacted their fields, students, college, university, and/or the public. The four will be honored at an awards ceremony during the CFAES State of the College address on Jan. 10, 2020, in Columbus.

    “The selection committee was extremely impressed with all of the nominees and their impactful contributions,” CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress said.

    Read more.

  2. Converge on ‘Wicked Systems Problems’ Nov. 18 in Columbus

    In honor of the 75th anniversary of the Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources (BANR), Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean, is hosting a presentation and panel discussion called “Converging on Wicked Systems Problems” on Nov. 18 in Columbus. The program, its flyer says, “will explore the application of transdisciplinary research and system approaches to solve grand challenges in our food, water, and energy systems”—challenges that include, for example, the climate crisis, food security, air pollution, and algal blooms.

    Panelists at the event will be Rolf Nordstrom, president and CEO of the Minnesota-based Great Plains Institute; Greg Soehnlen, president and CEO of Superior Dairy Inc., Canton, Ohio; and Lois Wright Morton, professor emeritus of sociology at Iowa State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

    The event runs from 1–3 p.m. at Ohio State’s Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Drive, on the Columbus campus. A reception follows. Admission is free and open to everyone, but registration is requested.

    Find out more and register to join us. You can watch, too, by livestream on the CFAES Facebook page.

  3. 150 students who ‘share an extraordinary passion for our university’

    Ohio State has announced its 150 Sesquicentennial Scholars for next year, and 13 are students from CFAES. As members of the Sesquicentennial Student Scholar Leadership Program, each of the students will receive a $2,500 scholarship, leadership training, and opportunities to serve as a university ambassador. “These 150 outstanding students share an extraordinary passion for our university,” Ohio State President Michael V. Drake wrote in an April 23 email to faculty and staff. They represent “the next generation in Ohio State’s proud tradition of service and excellence.”

    Our congratulations go to the scholars from CFAES: Chris Baird, agricultural systems management; Karaline Boso, animal sciences; Mary Buehler, agribusiness and applied economics; Melena Dillingham, agricultural and Extension education; Sarah Doner, animal sciences; Derek Goodman, food, agricultural and biological engineering; Mackenzie Hannum, food science and technology; Alexis Homik, environment, economy, development, and sustainabililty; Emily Kanney, food science and technology; Courtney Krieger, agribusiness; Xamarie Ruiz, animal sciences; Hunter Sandwisch, agribusiness; and Aaron Smith, agronomy.

    Read more and see a list of all the scholars.

  4. Keith DiDonato named CFAES chief advancement officer

    Keith DiDonato has been named CFAES’ new chief advancement officer starting May 20. He will lead and develop the college’s Office of Advancement, which includes fundraising, alumni relations, and marketing communications. 

    DiDonato previously was the associate vice president for development at The College of Wooster, where he oversaw the major and planned giving programs, annual giving, and the parents and family giving program. In that role, he was directly involved with the largest fundraising year in the history of the institution, adding $40 million to the school’s campaign. He is a 2001 bachelor’s degree graduate of CFAES’ Department of Animal Sciences and has also worked for Oberlin College and Cargill Corporation. 

    Read more

  5. CFAES officer reaches beyond campus to reverse two opioid overdoses

    The woman lay unconscious beside the gas station’s trash can in a rural part of the state that’s become accustomed to opioid overdoses. She was in her 20s, the mother of a toddler.

    The woman was not breathing when Justin Estill (pictured) arrived at the gas station, just across the highway from CFAES’s Wooster Campus. He’s a public safety officer for the campus, and though his main responsibilities are to keep the campus safe, he and other officers can assist with community calls.

    Estill reached for his Narcan kit and injected the naloxone into the woman’s nostrils. And then she responded. Firefighters drove her to a nearby hospital, where she walked out of the emergency room the next day.

    ‘Two lives that could have been lost’ — but weren’t

    This was the second time in six months that Estill had reversed an opioid overdose. A few miles south of campus, a woman overdosed in a home, and after Estill administered naloxone to her, she too awoke.

    “These are two lives that could have been lost here,” said Seth Walker, manager of Wooster Campus public safety. “Maybe it’s the ‘one more time’ they needed to try to turn everything around.”

    Campus safety, community support

    Whenever possible, CFAES law enforcement officers try to assist with emergencies beyond the Wooster Campus, because the college is part of the Wooster community and wants to support the community, Walker said. CFAES employees live in the area, their children attend local schools. And if the CFAES officers need assistance from local law enforcement, the staff can count on that, he said.

    “We don’t have the attitude, ‘Well, that’s outside of my jurisdiction. That’s on your side of the road,’ ” Walker said. “It doesn’t serve anyone to put up walls and say, ‘I’m sorry, you have to handle that yourself.’ ”

    Estill, who has worked as a firefighter and EMT, downplayed his role in reversing the two overdoses.

    “I did something that other officers do several times a week,” he said. “I was fortunate that I was nearby and could help.”—Alayna DeMartini, Marketing and Communications

  6. New CFAES leadership appointments announced

    Cathann A. Kress—vice president for agricultural administration and dean of The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES)—has recently announced the following new appointments:

    • Tim Haab as chair of the CFAES Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) and as the college’s inaugural dean’s chair
    • Scott Shearer as chair of the CFAES Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE)
    • Andrew (Dewey) Mann as director of CFAES’ Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory
    • Greg Davis as department chair and associate director of Ohio State University Extension
    • Tracy Kitchel as CFAES associate dean for faculty and staff affairs 
    • Jacqueline (Jackie) Wilkins as interim director of OSU Extension
    • Brandi Gilbert-Hammett as interim director of CFAES Human Resources
    • Heather Raymond as director of the CFAES Water Quality Initiative
    • Scott Scheer as interim chair of the CFAES Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership
    • James (Jamie) Strange as chair of the CFAES Department of Entomology
    • Clinton Woods as CFAES director of strategic partnerships
    • Seth Walker as CFAES director of safety and compliance
    • Kirk Bloir as assistant director, 4-H youth development, OSU Extension

    “Please join me in congratulating all of them,” Kress said. “Their roles are crucial to the continuing success of our college.”

    Tim Haab


    Haab, reappointed to a four-year term through June 30, 2023, joined Ohio State in 2000 and has served as AEDE department chair since 2010. A first-generation college student, he received his undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in 1991, and his PhD in agricultural and resource economics from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1995. From 1995–2000, he was an assistant professor in the Department of Economics at East Carolina University.

    Under Haab’s leadership, AEDE has been ranked the top research-doctorate program in the United States in agricultural and resource economics as well as in regional economics. Haab has successfully led AEDE programs that go beyond the classroom to integrate teaching, research, and outreach, and has transformed the AEDE staff to focus on customer service and innovative support programs. 

    “I look forward to Tim’s continued leadership and success within AEDE,” Kress said.

    Haab’s research and teaching focus on environmental economics and applied econometrics. His recent research has looked at the impacts of harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie, the impacts of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and the impacts of marine debris on southern California beaches. 

    Haab has led research supported by more than $4 million in grants; authored more than 70 articles and reports and three books; and has given presentations and seminars at more than 100 universities and conferences worldwide. He is past president of the National Association of Agricultural Economics Administrators; and has served on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board Environmental Economics Advisory Committee.

    Also will be first dean’s chair

    In addition to his reappointment as AEDE chair, Haab has been selected to be CFAES’ inaugural dean’s chair, a new program initiated in celebration of Ohio State’s sesquicentennial. Dean’s chair holders are individuals who, when given appropriate financial support and startup capability from the college and strategic partners, provide the college with the margin of excellence needed in an identified priority scholarly endeavor.

    As the dean’s chair in transformative initiatives, Haab will focus on new and innovative programs that integrate all three missions of teaching, research, and extension and contribute to the economic well-being of the state of Ohio. This appointment will also be for four years and will run concurrent to his department chair appointment.

    Initially, as dean’s chair, Haab will focus on the launch of the CFAES Knowledge Exchange, funded as part of the recent $7 million grant from the Nationwide Foundation. The Knowledge Exchange is a transformative, research-based, data-driven platform for collection, storage, translation, and exchange of CFAES data and research for diverse audiences. 

    Scott Shearer


    Shearer has been reappointed to a four-year term as FABE chair that runs through June 30, 2023. He brings strategic leadership and a clear focus to FABE and to the CFAES leadership team. He also has strong connections to numerous external partners who value his contributions and expertise. During the past year under Shearer’s leadership, FABE saw a significant jump among top programs in the nation, with its undergraduate programs ranking seventh in the nation, up from 11th in the latest U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings. 

    “I look forward to Scott’s continued leadership and success within FABE,” Kress said.

    Shearer has previously served two, four-year terms as FABE chair. He joined Ohio State in 2011, and before that was chair of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering at the University of Kentucky. His undergraduate and graduate degrees are in agricultural engineering from Ohio State. 

    Shearer’s research areas are digital agriculture and automation of agricultural field machinery. He has led research supported by over $14 million in grants; has authored more than 200 technical publications; is a co-inventor on multiple patents and patent applications; and has made numerous invited presentations at international conferences, professional meetings, and farmer forums. He is a fellow of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

    Dewey Mann


    Mann’s appointment as director of CFAES’ Waterman Lab begins July 15. In this role, he will be responsible for leading progress toward the strategic objectives to ensure successful operations and programming in conjunction with college administration, departments, faculty, and staff who administer programs at Waterman. He will be responsible for the day-to-day operations and will lead implementation of the strategic plans for Waterman, including budget and personnel. He will also provide communication and overall strategy, providing data as necessary to support a growing enterprise. In addition, Mann will work closely with Ken Scaife, CFAES’ director of agricultural operations, and the college’s operations team to align programming with other operations on the Wooster and statewide campuses.

    “I’m confident that Dr. Mann’s leadership, vision, and experience will position Waterman as a vital tool in helping our college achieve its mission,” Kress said.

    Mann has been with CFAES since 2010, serving as lecturer and faculty advisor. He earned his PhD in food, agricultural and biological engineering at Ohio State and his MS in agricultural and biological engineering at Purdue University. He completed his undergraduate work in agricultural systems management at the University of Missouri. Mann has established a track record in CFAES for his passion for teaching, experiential learning, and engaging industry partners. As a member of the Future of Waterman Task Force, he helped develop a comprehensive vision for Waterman, a proposed governance structure, and groundwork for a physical master plan. As a result of that work, he is uniquely positioned to lead Waterman into the future. He is looking forward to the opportunities to impact students all across Ohio State; to modernize the systems and create a state-of-the-art showcase for teaching, research, and outreach; and to build community with internal and external stakeholders.

    Greg Davis


    Davis began serving a four-year term as department chair and associate director of OSU Extension on Aug. 1. In this role, he leads the tenure-initiating unit for OSU Extension, managing the promotion and tenure process of OSU Extension tenure-track faculty.

    Davis earned his PhD in Extension education from Ohio State, his MPA in political science from Bowling Green State University, and a BA in comprehensive social sciences from the University of Findlay. His specialization is economic development, with emphasis on business retention and expansion, input-output modeling, and retail market analysis.

    Davis has served a statewide assignment as assistant director, OSU Extension, Community Development, since September 2010. In this capacity, he has led field-based Extension specialists and educators engaged in the development of community, organizational, and individual capacity to improve civic, environmental, and economic conditions throughout Ohio. Prior to this position, he served as leader, Community Economics and Business, a collaboration between the departments of Extension and AEDE. In this community outreach and engagement role, he worked with communities, residents, and OSU Extension field staff to develop and implement programs and tools to foster better-informed community economic development strategies. He has also served in a program leadership role at a regional level with OSU Extension and worked as an Extension educator in the Crawford County office, working with community volunteers, organizations, and local governments to develop local capacity for community development. 

    Tracy Kitchel


    Kitchel’s four-year term as CFAES associate dean for faculty and staff affairs begins Aug. 1. In this new role, he will serve on the CFAES vice president’s cabinet and will have responsibilities including enhancing processes for faculty recruitment, onboarding, integration, retention, evaluation, and promotion, as well as developing faculty compensation policies and practices, and identifying inequities. He will also serve as the college diversity advocate to help nurture cultural competency and an inclusive environment, and ensure equitable consideration of candidates.

    Kitchel earned his BS and MS at Ohio State and his PhD at the University of Missouri, all in agricultural education. His research focuses on the conditions of agriculture teachers’ entry into the profession, and more broadly, the career longevity of agriculture teachers. He has previously served on the faculties of the University of Kentucky and University of Missouri. Prior to returning to Ohio State in August 2016 as chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), Kitchel served as assistant vice provost of graduate and postdoctoral affairs at the University of Missouri.In May, Kitchel was named a fellow of the American Association for Agricultural Education (AAAE). He has won research awards including numerous research conference paper awards and journal article awards. He has also won numerous teaching and mentoring awards such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Excellence in Teaching Award for early career faculty. He has served as AAAE treasurer, was a U.S. Department of Education appointee to the National FFA Organization board of directors, and served the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources as chair of the faculty advisory committee.

    Jackie Wilkins


    Wilkins will serve as interim director of OSU Extension effective Aug. 1, 2019, through July 31, 2020, or until a new associate dean and director for OSU Extension is appointed. A search committee for the position will be formed during autumn semester.

    Wilkins is currently director of OSU Extension Operations. She is primarily responsible for providing leadership to the statewide Extension operations, composed of 88 counties, including all matters affecting personnel, finance, and business operations. As interim director of OSU Extension, she will continue her leadership for the Operations team, including supervision of staff; will assume supervision of the OSU Extension administrative staff; and will serve on the CFAES VP Cabinet and assist Dean Kress and college leadership with college strategic planning and implementation of strategic priorities.

    Wilkins received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Ohio Dominican University and her master’s and doctoral degrees in human development and family science from Ohio State. An associate professor, Wilkins began her career at Ohio State in 1994 as an Extension associate in the Department of Human Development and Family Science. She became Extension’s parenting state specialist in 2000. She has also served as the Northeast Region Extension director, where she provided leadership to 21 counties regarding personnel, finances, public relations, and business operations. Her research interests include prevention education, family policy, and organizational capacity building. She has received more than $6 million in local, state, and federal funding to conduct research and provide prevention programming for Ohio’s children and families.

    Wilkins also has experience in the public sector as the owner of a business management consulting firm, where she designed and implemented strategic planning initiatives and organizational analyses of efficiency, compensation, work flow, attrition, communications, and IT. Her clients included city and county governments, nonprofits, court systems, United Way agencies, philanthropic entities, and for-profit businesses.

    Brandi Gilbert-Hammett

    Gilbert-Hammett was appointed interim director, CFAES Human Resources, effective Aug. 21. She will also retain some of her current responsibilities as human resources manager for the college. She will report to Kitchel, associate dean for faculty and staff affairs.

    Prior to starting her career with CFAES, Gilbert-Hammett was a human resources partner for Ohio State’s Graduate School, Office of Academic Affairs, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Office of Internal Affairs, Office of Human Resources, and Wexner Center for the Arts.

    Heather Raymond


    Raymond will begin serving as the first director of CFAES’ Water Quality Initiative effective Sept. 3. She is a lead scientist with more than 20 years of experience championing innovative data-driven water quality programs, policies, and guidance. She is recognized as a national leader on harmful algal bloom (HAB) response and policy development and was recently elected to serve on the U.S. National HAB Committee. She is adept at building critical partnerships with researchers, stakeholders, and local, state, and federal agencies and has extensive experience communicating water-related science and policy to a range of audiences.

    Since 2011, Raymond has been the HAB coordinator for the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, where she designed and led research projects to inform policy decisions, rule-making, analytical method development, and guidance. She has served on multiple grant and program review panels to help ensure support for applied projects and critical programs that address state and federal water quality priorities. Previously, she was lead hydrogeologist with Ohio EPA. Her degrees include an executive MPA, an MS in hydrogeology, and a BS in geology, all from Ohio University. 

    As Water Quality Initiative director, Raymond will lead efforts to build support, generate resources, and implement programs that expand the impact of CFAES faculty to address critical water quality issues in Ohio. Guided by recommendations from a recent CFAES Water Quality Task Force report, she will support the work of CFAES faculty and staff, coordinate with other college and Ohio State water quality programs, and build stronger ties among CFAES and other important water quality programs and efforts across the state of Ohio. She will serve as a central point of contact to identify and expand linkages between CFAES faculty and external stakeholders and policy makers, will oversee the work of a team of translational staff, and will work closely with OSU Extension specialists and educators to increase the impacts and relevance of CFAES research. She will take a lead role to convene key actors and facilitate dialogue on important Ohio water quality topics, including creating and supporting formal forums that bring together researchers, students, stakeholders, and decision-makers.

    Scott Scheer

    Scheer will begin serving as interim chair of ACEL effective Sept. 1, 2019, through Aug. 31, 2020, or until a new chair is appointed. Details about the search process for a permanent chair for ACEL will be announced soon.

    Scheer is a professor in ACEL and has been with Ohio State since 1996. He currently serves as coordinating advisor for the Community and Extension Education specialization in the Community Leadership major and Ohio State’s undergraduate minors of Community Outreach Education and Youth Development. He has also provided research and support for OSU Extension (4-H Youth Development) in the areas of Preadolescent Education and the 4-H Cloverbud Program.

    Scheer’s research focus is in the areas of outreach education and youth development. He has secured externally funded grants from sources that include USDA-NIFA, Ohio Department of Mental Health, U.S. Department of Transportation, and the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services. He publishes regularly in peer-reviewed journals and has been recognized with awards including a National Communicator Award, Distinguished Service Award, and Extension Outstanding Teaching Award. He has degrees from the University of Delaware (PhD, family studies, youth focus); Teachers College, Columbia University (MA. developmental psychology); and Louisiana Tech University (BS).

    Jamie Strange


    Strange, currently a research entomologist with the USDA-ARS Pollinating Insect Research Unit in Logan, Utah, and an adjunct faculty member in Utah State University’s Biology Department, begins a four-year term as chair of CFAES’ Department of Entomology on Sept. 16. He is an accomplished researcher and leader, and has received multiple honors including awards for student mentoring and USDA certificates of merit and appreciation. 

    “I’m excited about the vision Dr. Strange has for our Department of Entomology,” Kress said. “I’m confident that his leadership will be a great asset for the department and our college.”

    Strange’s research areas include basic aspects of bumble bee biology and practical aspects of bumble bee culture for pollination. Currently, his lab is working cooperatively with researchers at several universities and government agencies to investigate the causes and extent of declines of several North American bee species. This work seeks to understand the drivers of population dynamics such as pathogens, habitat change, and genetics, and how those stressors interact to impact pollinators.

    Strange’s previous positions include postdoctoral research associate in Cornell University’s Department of Entomology, research assistant in Washington State University’s Department of Entomology, entomology instructor at Lewis-Clark State College in Idaho, and agricultural science research technician with USDA-ARS in Washington state.Strange received his master’s degree and PhD in entomology from Washington State University and completed his undergraduate work in agricultural science at Pennsylvania State University.

    Clinton Woods

    Woods is joining CFAES as director of strategic partnerships, a position made possible by generous funding through the Nationwide-Ohio State collaborative. He starts a two-year term on Oct. 14.

    In this role, Woods will lead efforts to fully engage community members, stakeholders, and other partners and will coordinate these efforts. He will work extensively with researchers and external partners, facilitating connections between external partners and scholarship to action through a breadth of complex collaborations and partnerships. He will support and deepen the college’s current partnerships, helping to extend and transform them into longer-term, ever more impactful engagements. In addition, he will generate opportunities to integrate needs from external partners and match them with researchers or developers to address discovery or programmatic solutions.

    Woods has a unique combination of long-range planning, community outreach, environmental and agricultural policy, and grant and nonprofit management experience, including work to translate complex technical and scientific information into policy-relevant material for officials at all levels of government. This progressive experience has included direct interaction with key federal agencies; members of Ohio’s congressional delegation; and senior officials in city, county, and state government in Ohio.

    Woods comes to CFAES from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C., where he has served as deputy assistant administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. Previously, he was the executive director of AAPCA, a national association of state and local environmental agencies, including Ohio EPA and several city and county agencies in Ohio. He holds an MA in international commerce and policy from George Mason University, focusing on environmental, agricultural, and climate change policy, and a BA from the University of Mary Washington.

    “Please join me in welcoming Clint to this crucial leadership position, which will play a catalytic role to create and steward innovative new consortia and partnerships for CFAES,” Dean Kress said.

    Seth Walker

    Seth C. Walker, JD, will begin serving as director of safety and compliance for CFAES effective Oct. 1.

    Walker is a public safety professional with extensive experience in both higher education and municipal operations. He combines policing experience with expertise in strategic planning, emergency management operations, facility security assessments and upgrades, grants administration, and community policing strategies.

    In his new position, Walker provides CFAES with management, administration, and oversight of all safety-related services and regulatory compliance/risk management and serves as a member of the CFAES Operations Team. In addition, he oversees the safe use and security of high-risk biohazards, including select agents used in laboratories and animal facilities, as well as daily monitoring of biosafety and biosecurity maintenance of the Plant and Animal Agrosecurity Research (PAAR) BSL-3 Ag facility.

    Walker has been with Ohio State since 2011, first as biosecurity director/EHS manager-Wooster campus, then as public safety manager/biosecurity director. He also served as a lieutenant with The Ohio State University Police Division. Before coming to Ohio State, he was assistant director of public safety for the city of Columbus.      

    Walker earned his law degree from Capital University, in addition to his law enforcement credentials. He has a BS in microbiology from Ohio State and is a certified hazmat technician.

    Kirk Bloir


    Bloir has been appointed to serve as assistant director, 4-H youth development, for OSU Extension.

    As OSU Extension assistant director and state 4-H leader, Bloir will provide organizational, cross-disciplinary, and creative leadership for Ohio 4-H youth development programming. This role includes providing financial and operational oversight of the state 4-H office and the Ohio 4-H Foundation, addressing budgetary and human resources administration, operations, program development, evaluation and implementation, internal and external partnerships, 4-H policies and procedures, and professional development of 4-H program professionals.

    Bloir has served as interim assistant director for the past year. Prior to that, he served four years as associate state 4-H leader, providing leadership in the areas of risk and program management, coaching professionals through volunteer and member behavior management issues, crisis communications, conflict resolution, and corrective action.

    “Ohio State University Extension is blessed to have a talented and dedicated group of 4-H professionals, volunteers, and community supporters across the state,” Bloir said. “I am excited to continue our collective efforts to build on our strong 4-H foundation and work to expand the reach of 4-H in Ohio to create even more opportunities for us to grow future generations of true leaders.”

    Bloir received his bachelor’s degree in adolescent development, master’s degree in human development and family science, and PhD in Extension education from Ohio State. He began his career with Ohio State in 1996 as an Extension agent in Madison County and has since served in several other roles within Extension, including program director in the Department of Human Development and Family Science and in family and consumer sciences administration. His experiences in the organization and integral involvement with providing leadership for the Ohio 4-H program will serve him well in his new role.

  7. CFAES holds groundbreaking for Science Building at Wooster

    CFAES broke ground on May 3—figuratively, at least—on its new Science Building at the Wooster campus. The ceremony, held inside Fisher Auditorium because of threatening weather, featured a reception and comments by CFAES and local leaders. The $33.5 million, 60,000-square-foot building will house the Department of Entomology; will have laboratory, classroom, lecture, and office space; and will also have a cafe and patio. Its aim is to foster a “one campus” feeling, helping unify Ohio State ATI and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

    Pictured at the ceremony, left to right, are Graham Cochran, CFAES associate dean for operations; CFAES Wooster Campus Director Dave Benfield; Wayne County Commissioners Sue Smail and Becky Foster; CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress; Wooster Mayor Bob Brenneman; State Rep. Scott Wiggam; Ohio State ATI Director Kris Boone; and Andy Michel, associate professor and interim associate chair, Entomology.

  8. ‘We are deeply fortunate’ to have such partners

    Building on 50 years of partnership with CFAES, the Nationwide Foundation is contributing $7 million to support the college’s vision of a modern land-grant institution with a mission to sustain life. The largest part of the gift, $5 million, supports the construction of new facilities and infrastructure at the Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory (shown here, looking toward downtown Columbus). “We are deeply fortunate to have partners like Nationwide and the Nationwide Foundation committed to advancing and sustaining life across Ohio and beyond,” said CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress.

    “The Nationwide Foundation is proud to make this contribution to Ohio State and see our collaborative efforts around food production, security, and sustainability take a giant leap forward,“ said Nationwide Foundation President Chad Jester. “Together, we share a long-term vision with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences that assures the land-grant mission of sustaining life remains strong for generations to come.“

    Read more.

  9. Anne Dorrance named to lead Wooster campus

    CFAES plant pathologist Anne E. Dorrance has been named to the top leadership position at The Ohio State University Wooster campus. On Jan. 1, 2020, she will begin a four-year term as associate dean and director for the Wooster campus and associate director for the Ohio Agricultural Experiment Station in the college.

    “Dr. Dorrance’s appointment to this position is essential to the continuing success of our Wooster campus and the college,” CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress said.

    In her new role, Dorrance will also serve on the Vice President and Dean’s Administrative Cabinet, providing leadership and oversight for the Wooster campus. The campus is home to Ohio State ATI, CFAES’ two-year degree-granting unit, and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

    Dorrance has been a faculty member in CFAES’ Department of Plant Pathology at Wooster since fall 1997. She currently serves as a professor in the department and was the director of the CFAES Center for Soybean Research.

    Read more.

  10. Ohio State launches ‘Time and Change’ campaign

    On Oct. 4, Ohio State launched the public phase of Time and Change: The Ohio State Campaign, the most ambitious, inclusive community-building and fundraising endeavor in the university’s 150-year history. The campaign is striving to engage 1 million supporters, an unprecedented level in higher education; has a financial goal of $4.5 billion, the largest in Ohio State’s history; and has three core areas of focus: student success; discovery; and healthy, vibrant communities. CFAES' goal as part of the campaign is to raise $225 million in private support focusing on the college’s campaign priorities of workforce developmenttranslating research, and the Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory.

    “As we celebrate Ohio State’s sesquicentennial, it is fitting to launch a campaign focused on the essence of what it means to be a Buckeye: our unwavering focus on people, their potential, our community, and our collective impact around the world,” said Ohio State President Michael V. Drake. “Together, we will continue to invest in the future and ignite hope—inspiring new generations and delivering innovations that serve the greater good.”

    Read more.

  11. First Dean’s Charity Steer Show a wrap: ‘Appreciative of the unbelievable support’

    The first-ever Dean’s Charity Steer Show—hosted by CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress and featuring 13 teams of celebrities, 4-H members, and the 4-H members’ bovine charges—raised $146,000 (and counting) for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio. The charity, among its services, provides housing for families of children being treated at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus. The show took place July 30 in Columbus at the Ohio Expo Center and State Fair.

    “I am so appreciative of the unbelievable support we received in our first year of doing this,” Dean Kress said. “It was wonderful to see us come together to celebrate agriculture and children, both our 4-H youth as well as youth who benefit from the wonderful Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio.”

    Read more and check out some photos.

  12. Dean’s Charity Steer Show set for July 30 at Ohio State Fair

    A new event celebrating Ohio agriculture, Ohio communities, and Ohio children is planned for the 2019 Ohio State Fair.

    The inaugural Dean’s Charity Steer Show—set for 2–4 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, at the Voinovich Livestock & Trade Center at the Ohio Expo Center and State Fair in Columbus—will be hosted by Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean.

    “This will be an exciting event to bring together our community to celebrate agriculture and kids, both for our 4-H youth development programs as well as youth benefiting from the Ronald McDonald House,” Kress said. “All proceeds from the show will benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio.”

    Read more.

  13. Wooster Campus sees 2nd tornado in 7 years

    A small tornado briefly touched down on CFAES’s Wooster Campus just before 6 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 5. Thankfully, no one was injured.

    OARDC’s historic Barnhart Rice Homestead (pictured) bore the brunt of the damage, losing half its roof and suffering extensive water damage to its interior as a result, but some buildings and greenhouses on the OARDC part of the campus saw moderate to light damage, too, such as broken panes and damaged roofs, and Secrest Arboretum lost nearly 80 trees. Ohio State ATI, fortunately, was out of the twister’s path.

    “We’re thankful there was no damage to our residence halls and that all of our undergraduate and graduate students are safe,” CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress said.

    A little more than seven years ago, in September 2010, an EF-2 tornado struck and caused major damage to the OARDC portion of the campus. Among other things, it damaged the Agricultural Engineering Building beyond repair and toppled about 2,000 trees, most of them in the arboretum. But it likewise caused no injuries. In that storm, the Barnhart Rice home lost most of its roof and saw major interior damage, but was repaired.

    Dave Benfield, Wooster Campus director, said plans are to restore the Barnhart Rice house, aka the Stone House, again to its original, pre-tornado condition.

    Read more in CFAES’s press release about the tornado (including photos by Ken Chamberlain and Brian Hanna) and in a Wooster Daily Record story.

    Cleanup and repair underway; progress reported

    Meanwhile, in a Nov. 9 email to faculty and staff, Benfield reported the following recovery progress:

    • Cleanup of general debris is in progress by external contractors.
    • Tree limbs and down tree removal are in progress by grounds and arboretum staff and external contractors.
    • There were 79 storm-damaged trees.
    • In the Stone House, the open roof has been temporarily covered by Wooster-based Bogner Construction; mitigation of water damage is in process; drying out of the interior with 220 degree heaters to draw out moisture is underway; and assessment will follow to determine needed repairs.
    • In the greenhouses, cleanup of broken polycarbonate and glass panes and the installation of temporary coverings are in process by Strongsville-based LL Klink; movement of plant material is being coordinated by Chris Taylor of the Department of Plant Pathology; damage to research projects is still being assessed but appears minimal at this time; fan repairs are being addressed; the Madison Avenue greenhouses are up and running; and temporary repairs to the Gourley Hall greenhouses are scheduled to be finished Nov. 9.
    • Roof damage to other buildings and needed repairs are still being assessed.
    • Broken windows have been temporarily covered, and permanent repairs will follow soon.
    • Equipment damage due to electrical outages is being evaluated and addressed on a case-by-case basis.
    • 45 acres of corn saw damage from severe lodging.

    Report any damage to Facilities Services

    Benfield concluded the email by saying, “As a reminder, as you continue to evaluate your respective buildings and work spaces in the aftermath of the tornado, please report all emergency needs to Facility Services via phone (330-263-3915), or email Joe Messenger for any nonemergency issues at messenger.47@osu.edu.

    “Please refrain from conducting any repairs on your own until Facility Services evaluates and provides direction. We appreciate your cooperation and patience as we continue to assess the damage to the Wooster Campus, and we will continue to communicate information as it is available.

    “I would like to send my sincere appreciation to all those involved in the speedy cleanup and recovery efforts.”

  14. Dean’s Charity Steer Show’s final tally hits $152,000

    The inaugural Dean’s Charity Steer Show, hosted July 30 by Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean, brought in a final tally of $152,000 in donations to the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Central Ohio

    “It was a privilege to work with so many esteemed businesses and organizations toward a common cause—raising money to help families be close to their injured or ill children,” said RMHC board member Leslie Bumgarner, president and chief executive officer of Telhio Credit Union. “This event brought agribusiness and non-ag-related businesses together to accomplish outstanding results—underscoring the impact we can have when we have a worthy intent and take action.”

    Read more and check out some photos.

  15. Roger Rennekamp stepping down as director of OSU Extension

    Roger Rennekamp, CFAES associate dean and director of Ohio State University Extension, will bring his 40-year career in Cooperative Extension to a close on July 31. Rennekamp has served Ohio and its citizens since 2016 as the 12th leader of OSU Extension, and has been responsible for numerous positive changes. 

    “Dr. Rennekamp has forged a large number of new partnerships that have served to heighten awareness of Extension’s mission among both internal and external stakeholders,” said Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean. “Please join me in thanking him for his service and wishing him all the best.”

    Read more.

  16. CFAES site a one-stop shop for dealing with ongoing farming crisis

    CFAES has launched a new website for farmers who are dealing with Ohio’s unprecedented rain. Called “Addressing 2019 Agricultural Challenges,” the site offers help on topics related to the ongoing rain-caused farming crisis—from prevented planting to crop insurance to managing stress and more.

    The website, it says, aims to provide science-based solutions and recommendations, helping farmers get through the crisis as well as possible. Areas covered include field crops, dairy, livestock, fruits, and vegetables. Resources include fact sheets, webinars, regular CFAES newsletters, FAQs answered by CFAES experts, and a “Submit a Question” option.

    Visit the site.

  17. Tom Stewart wins Distinguished Lecturer Award

    Tom Stewart, lecturer in CFAES’ Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), received Ohio State’s Provost’s Award for Distinguished Teaching by a Lecturer when Provost Bruce McPheron, CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress, family, friends, students, and colleagues paid a surprise visit to his classroom on March 25. Sponsored by Ohio State’s Office of Academic Affairs, the annual award honors up to six lecturers, senior lecturers, and other associated faculty members for their teaching excellence. 

    Stewart (in black, left of Kress), an Ohio native, Ohio State alumnus, and long-time TV and radio professional, teaches three courses for ACEL—Oral Expression in Agriculture, Campaign Design and Management in Agricultural Organization, and Senior Transition from College.

  18. Jeanne Osborne named Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs

    I am pleased to announce the appointment of Jeanne Osborne to the position of Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs and College Secretary in the CFAES Academic Programs Office. She will begin her new position on Jan. 1, 2019. Jeanne has a significant amount of relevant experience and is well prepared for this role.

    Jeanne earned her BS and MS degrees at Ohio State, majoring in Animal Sciences. Since 2014, she has been Assistant Director for Academic Affairs at Ohio State ATI on the Wooster Campus. In this role, she is responsible for oversight of the academic affairs office, academic policy and procedure, course and curricular approval, academic advising, learning laboratory and library, and student financial aid. She has played an instrumental role in creating the pathways to the bachelor degrees on the Columbus campus and in oversight of the campus change process for ATI students.

    Previously, Jeanne served as an executive assistant to the chair of the Department of Animal Sciences, where she supported advising, assessment of student learning, curricular development, study abroad course development, grant writing, and departmental reporting and communications.—Steven M. Neal, Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Programs

  19. Dave Benfield retiring as Wooster campus director

    Congratulations to Dave Benfield, who is retiring after four decades of making breakthrough discoveries in animal disease prevention, overseeing major campus facilities renovations, and creating hands-on research opportunities for undergraduates.

    Benfield will retire Dec. 31 as associate vice president of agricultural administration in CFAES and director of the college’s Wooster campus, a role in which he has served since 2016. He came to the college in 2002 as associate director of OARDC and as a professor in the Food Animal Health Research Program following more than 20 years at South Dakota State University. 

    Renowned for his contributions to swine disease research, Benfield isolated the porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) virus in the early 1990s and helped develop the first vaccine and diagnostic tests for what continues to cost the swine industry nearly a billion dollars annually. His research on PRRS has resulted in nine U.S. patents and several foreign patents.

    Read more.

    Read a Dec. 12 Wooster Daily Record story about Benfield’s retirement.

    Read about donating to the Benfield Scholarship Endowment Fund (#483505), which has been established to provide scholarships for any Ohio State students who are participating or planning to participate in research projects on the Wooster campus.

  20. CFAES student Kolesen McCoy selected National FFA president

    CFAES student Kolesen McCoy, a second-year major in agribusiness and applied economics, is the new leader of an organization of more than 700,000 members after being selected the 2019–20 National FFA Organization president on Nov. 3 in Indianapolis.

    The Clark County, Ohio, native graduated in 2017 from the Global Impact STEM Academy in Springfield, Ohio, where he was a member of its FFA chapter and received the American FFA Degree. He’s only the third Ohioan to hold FFA’s top leadership position. 

    Read more.

  21. New CFAES task force offers help to struggling farmers

    A new CFAES task force is offering help to farmers and their families dealing with the impacts of Ohio’s farming crisis, a crisis fueled by too much rain, low commodity prices, and reduced international demand. Called the Rural and Farm Stress Task Force, the effort involves experts from OSU Extension and Ohio State’s College of Social Work. The aim is to connect farmers and their families with mental-health and other specialists within OSU Extension or the farmers’ communities, no matter where a farmer lives in the state.

    Task force members say the hope is to reassure and empower farmers. Dee Jepsen, task force co-chair and OSU Extension state safety leader, said farmers are “resilient, or they wouldn’t be doing the job they’re doing.”

    Read more.

  22. CFAES student named a prestigious Borlaug-Ruan intern

    CFAES student Ava Forystek is spending her summer as one of 24 students, including two from Ohio State, in the prestigious Borlaug-Ruan international internship program. Forystek, a sustainable plant systems major specializing in plant biosciences in CFAES’ Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, is working at China’s Peking University in Beijing.

    The Borlaug-Ruan internship program, whose participants were announced in May by The World Food Prize Foundation, sends exceptional students abroad to work at renowned research centers and nongovernmental organizations.

    Read more.

  23. Kent McGuire receives Ohio State Distinguished Staff Award

    Kent McGuire, CFAES’ safety and health coordinator, has received one of Ohio State’s 12 Distinguished Staff Awards, the university’s highest staff recognition. The awards honor staff members for their exceptional leadership, accomplishments, and service to Ohio State. He is pictured in the middle row, left, behind Ohio State President Michael V. Drake.

    McGuire “fosters an environment that is safe for employees,” Ohio State’s Office of Human Resources says on its website. “He goes above and beyond to develop safety initiatives to protect employees in a diverse variety of areas,” including research farms and Ohio State University Extension county offices. He and the other award winners were recognized by President Drake and other university leaders during an April 30 luncheon, which is when the photo was taken, and will be honored on the field during Ohio State’s Aug. 31 football game.

    Read more.

  24. Guo-Liang Wang wins Distinguished Scholar Award

    Guo-Liang Wang, professor in CFAES' Department of Plant Pathology and an international leader in rice genetics research, has received The Ohio State University’s Distinguished Scholar Award for his contributions to global food security. Wang, who joined CFAES in 1999, has produced pioneering insights into the resistance of crop plants to fungal and bacterial pathogens, specifically disease resistance in rice. Ohio State Provost Bruce McPheron and CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress presented the award in a surprise visit to Wang's classroom on Feb. 25.

    “We are very proud of Dr. Wang and his scholarship,” Kress said in a press release announcing the recognition. “He represents our college very, very well.”

    Read more.

  25. Sarah Williams wins Residence Life Academic Partner of the Year award

    Sarah Williams’ work with two learning communities has earned her one big honor. Williams, who is CFAES’ academic program coordinator, student success experiences, recently was named Ohio State’s Residence Life Academic Partner of the Year for 2018–2019. Janet Steinbacher, assistant director of academic initiatives in Ohio State’s University Housing department, said the award goes to someone who helps the department offer “meaningful experiences to residential students in a clustered living environment”—in this case, the CFAES Learning Community and CFAES’ Kellogg-Moser Food Security and Sustainability Learning Community.

    “Knowing that the department shares community, inclusion, wellness, and learning as our core four values, all of our programs, including our learning communities, work hard to promote experiences around these topic areas for our students,” Steinbacher said. “We appreciate the work that Sarah has done to engage students in two different learning communities.” Included in that work has been inviting CFAES faculty members to join the communities’ monthly dinners, which Steinbacher said both the students and faculty have enjoyed; and focusing on student wellness, including organizing a stress reduction workshop led by CFAES’ embedded counselor.

  26. Biological and agricultural engineering undergraduate programs rank 7th nationally

    In U.S. News & World Report’s latest Best Colleges rankings, the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE) saw a significant jump among top programs in the nation. FABE’s undergraduate biological and agricultural engineering programs ranked seventh in the nation, up from 11th last year.

    “Over the past several years we have seen incredible growth in students interested in studying biological and agricultural engineering, which has allowed us to hire additional faculty and to upgrade classrooms and teaching laboratories,” said Scott Shearer, professor and chair, FABE. “We are grateful to see our peers recognize these programmatic improvements and are emboldened to continue to offer the best possible educational experience to our students.”—Chip Tuson, Marketing and Communications Manager, FABE

  27. Top 25 list of majors with lowest unemployment rates includes 4 in agriculture

    Agricultural economics has the second-lowest unemployment rate, 0.74%, among all college majors, according to a June 2019 report by the website 24/7 Wall St. Also on the report’s top 25 list of majors with the lowest unemployment rates were miscellaneous agriculture (ranked 9th, with a rate of 1.35%), soil science (12th, 1.4%), and animal sciences (14th, 1.52%).

    All of this continues to bode well for CFAES students. The college’s most recent career outcome data shows that 92.1% of its graduates were employed or continuing their education within six months of graduation. Those graduates got jobs with some 349 different companies, about three-quarters of which were in Ohio.

    Read some of those CFAES graduates’ stories.

  28. Katrina Cornish honored for biopolymer research

    Katrina Cornish, an Ohio Research Scholar and Endowed Chair in Bio-based Emergent Materials with CFAES’ Department of Horticulture and Crop Science and Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, recently received the BioEnvironmental Polymer Society Lifetime Achievement Award for scientific excellence and impact in the field.

    The prestigious award recognizes science and engineering leaders who have made “outstanding contributions that have advanced the scientific field and/or technological development of biopolymers, biobased materials, or bioplastic/materials related to bioenergy,” according to the society’s website.

    Read more. (Photo courtesy of Srikanth Pilla, Jenkins Endowed Professor, Clemson University, via Institute for Materials Research, Ohio State.)

  29. CFAES recognizes scientists, staff at Annual Research Conference

    Congratulations to the following CFAES scientists who were honored at the CFAES Annual Research Conference on April 22:

    Also recognized at the conference were the winners of last year’s CFAES Staff Advisory Council AwardsIvory Harlow, Ohio State University South Centers, Innovation Award; Jami Dellifield, Ohio State University Extension, Key Values Award; Chrissy Kaminski, OSU Extension, Special Recognition; and Bill Smiley, CFAES Advancement, Shirley Brooks-Jones Award—and Emile Gluck Thaler, Plant Pathology (advised by Jason Slot, Plant Pathology), recipient of the William E. Krauss Award for Excellence in Graduate Research.

  30. CFAES students represent at Denman Research Forum

    CFAES students made a strong showing at Ohio State’s Richard J. and Martha D. Denman Undergraduate Research Forum on Feb. 20, winning four firsts, two seconds, and two thirds in five of the event’s 18 categories.

    • Conservation and Development—Harrison Fried, School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR), first place (Suzanne Gray, mentor); Heather Pechtl, Department of Animal Sciences, second place (Chanhee Lee, mentor); Alyson Linton, Department of Animal Sciences, third place (Daniel Clark, mentor).
    • Education Across the Human Lifespan—Kayla Walls, Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership, first place (S. Dee Jepsen, mentor).
    • Evolutionary Ecology and Environmental Science—Joey Smith, Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), third place (Ryan Winston, mentor).
    • Evolution, Genetics, and Biochemistry of Insects—Vivian Chang, Department of Entomology, first place (Megan Meuti, mentor); Hilary Kordecki, Department of Animal Sciences, second place (Chia Lin, mentor).
    • Emerging Technologies: Smartphones, Social Media Platforms, and Beyond—Kuanrong Zhu, Department of Food Science and Technology, first place (Luis Rodriguez-Saona, mentor).

    In all, some 205 students competed in the event. Find details on the students and their presentations here. Read a story about the forum and Fried's research here.

  31. CFAES welcomes prime minister of Serbia

    Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic met with Ohio State and CFAES officials as part of her visit to Columbus on Jan. 28. Cathann A. Kress, vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean, talked to Brnabic about food sciences at Ohio State and the university’s modern approaches to agricultural production; gave details on CFAES programs including biosystems and precision agriculture; and helped lead a tour of labs in the Parker Food Science and Technology Building. Brnabic has an interest in food production and food science, especially as related to fruits, jams, and jellies. Ohio State’s Office of Government Affairs organized the visit, which also included faculty and administrators from the Office of International Affairs

    “A good visit to @OhioState, one of the leading US state universities,” Brnabic said on her Twitter feed. “We talked about improving cooperation in the areas of education and science, with a special focus on innovations in agriculture. The exchange of academic staff has been discussed.”

    Meeting in the Parker Food Science and Technology Building

    Touring the Parker building

    (Photos: John Rice, CFAES.)

  32. President Drake visits Ohio State ATI

    Ohio State President Michael Drake spent part of Nov. 9 at Ohio State ATI on CFAES's Wooster Campus. In addition to meeting with faculty, staff and Key Advisory Committee members, he participated in student-led activities that showcased ATI’s hands-on approach to education.

    • In the new hydroponic greenhouse, Drake planted plugs of lettuce and checked nutrient levels in the system.
    • Students in the bioenergy and biological waste management program assisted Drake in making biodiesel from waste cooking oil.
    • Floral design and marketing students guided him in creating a floral arrangement featuring scarlet roses and gray Dusty Millers.
    • Students in the landscape horticulture program demonstrated to Drake the operation of a piece of landscape equipment and then gave him the controls (pictured with second-year landscape horticulture student Andrew Potter).

    Ohio State ATI Director Kristina Boone said, “I think we were able to illustrate how the college and the Wooster Campus live the land-grant mission. President Drake affirmed his commitment to our unique role in the university and the regionals in general. He was an enthusiastic participant in the demonstrations our excellent students led.”—Frances Whited, Ohio State ATI

  33. Celebration: CFAES honors Distinguished Seniors

    CFAES congratulates its 2019 Distinguished Seniors, who received their awards at a dinner in their honor on March 27 in Columbus. The Distinguished Senior Award honors academic, disciplinary, and professional excellence and is the most prestigious undergraduate award in our college.

    • Bryce S. Axelrod, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, sustainable plant systems—horticulture
    • Emanuel Barnes, Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), construction systems management
    • Kevin J. Berkowitz, Department of Food Science and Technology, culinary science
    • Ashley N. Besancon, Department of Food Science and Technology, food sciences and technology
    • Lindsay J. Davis, Department of Food Science and Technology, food business management
    • Maria C. Fredericks, School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR), environmental policy and decision making—honors
    • Anna C. Garrett, Department of Animal Sciences, animal sciences—animal biosciences
    • Matthew S. Griffin, SENR and Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), environment, economy, development, and sustainability—sustainability and business
    • Justin Scott Haerr, FABE, agricultural systems management
    • Mary E. Jenkins, Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), agricultural communication
    • Jenna K. Lee, FABE, food, agricultural and biological engineering
    • Julia M. Linares, SENR, environmental policy and decision making—prelaw
    • Cody J. McClain, ACEL, agriscience education
    • Marie E. McConnell, SENR, environmental policy and decision making—policy and governance  
    • Abigale M. Motter, ACEL, agriscience education
    • Andrew L. Oppliger, SENR, forestry, fisheries, and wildlife—fisheries and aquatic sciences  
    • Heather A. Pechtl, Department of Animal Sciences, animal sciences—animal biosciences  
    • Charis K. Ramsing, Department of Plant Pathology, plant pathology
    • Sarah A. Schuster, AEDE, agribusiness and applied economics
    • Joseph S. Smith, FABE, food, agricultural and biological engineering
    • Sarah R. Steinbrunner, Department of Food Science and Technology, food sciences and technology
    • Ariel A. Taylor, Department of Animal Sciences, animal sciences—animal biosciences
    • Megan E. Whalin, Department of Animal Sciences, animal sciences—animal biosciences
    • Amy L. Wilber, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, sustainable plant systems—turfgrass science 
    • Emily E. Winson, Department of Animal Sciences, animal sciences—animal biosciences

    Find links to press releases about each of the award winners here.

  34. OSU Extension receives NIFA grant to address opioid issues

    OSU Extension has received one of nine Rural Health and Safety Education Competitive grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The grants are meant to address the needs of rural Americans through individual and family health education programs delivered through Cooperative Extension. For FY18, the awards are focusing on the prevention and reduction of opioid misuse and abuse in rural areas.

    OSU Extension’s project will focus specifically on three rural counties: Paulding, Hardin, and Vinton. Educators in these counties will build on existing relationships within their communities to maximize the benefits of the Promoting School-Community-University Partnerships to Enhance Resilience (PROSPER) program and will further encourage positive change within their communities through the presentation of Generation Rx, Mental Health First Aid, and Youth Mental Health First Aid trainings. The grant will build and sustain engaged and multidisciplinary community teams (comprising parents, students, faith leaders, health and social service providers, etc.) that are connected to residents and other stakeholders to serve as local advisory bodies as well as advocates for the project, implement the PROSPER delivery system and its evidence-based prevention curricula for students and families, expand and deepen the reach of Generation Rx, and implement Mental Health First Aid trainings.

  35. CFAES hosts screenings of ‘Food Evolution’

    Ohio State ATI’s Frances Whited reports that nearly 700 people attended the Nov. 7 Wooster Campus screening of “Food Evolution” (2017), a film that makes the case for GMOs in the solution to world hunger.

    A postscreening panel discussion featured (pictured left to right) Jarrod Tudor, dean of the University of Akron’s Wayne College in Orrville; CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress; Glenn Mott, vice president for compliance at Kidron-based Gerber Poultry; and Gabe Middleton, veterinarian and president-elect of the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST).

    Audience members posed questions in person and via Twitter on topics ranging from the role of Extension and 4-H in educating the public about GMOs to the economics of using non-GMO animal feeds.

    At the end of the evening, Dean Kress encouraged audience members to “continue the conversation” about this controversial subject.

    “Food Evolution” also screened on Oct. 18 in the Archie Griffin West Ballroom in the Ohio Union on the Columbus campus, presented by two CFAES student groups, the Food Science Club and the Citation Needed science and agriculture communicators club.

    Of note, the postscreening discussion featured UC-Davis scientist Alison Van Eenenaam, who’s interviewed in the film.

    Watch the film’s trailer.

  36. New food safety center, part of CFAES, to hold kickoff event Nov. 14

    Ohio State’s new Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention (CFI), which is housed within CFAES and is directed by Barbara Kowalcyk of the Department of Food Science and Technology, will hold an inaugural event called “Translating Science Into Policy and Practice: What Are the Food Safety Priorities?” from 1–6:30 p.m. Nov. 14 at the Drake Performance and Event Center, 1849 Cannon Drive, on the Columbus campus. 

    The event will include a food safety panel discussion featuring Mindy Brashears, PhD, deputy under secretary for food safety, Food Safety and Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; David Goldman, MD, MPH, chief medical officer, Office of Food Policy and Response, U.S. Food and Drug Administration; and Robert Tauxe, MD, MPH, director, Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    Read more.

  37. What can we learn from Bangladesh about climate change?

    Bangladesh, a country of 165 million in southern Asia, can teach the world a lot about climate change—how everything from climate to food to migration to economics is intertwined. So says Joyce Chen in a recent article on our CFAES Stories website.

    Chen studies climate change and migration in Bangladesh as part of her work as an associate professor in CFAES’ Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics. Her research includes how saltwater encroaches on soil and drinking water, making it increasingly difficult to grow crops and find fresh water. “It’s true that eventually the cities will be underwater,” she says, “but a lot of stuff happens in between.”

    Read the full story.

    (Pictured in the middle of the photo is J. Craig Jenkins, professor emeritus in Ohio State’s Department of Sociology and one of Chen’s co-researchers, standing on an eroding embankment, or polder wall, in Bangladesh. The homes of some 5,000 people would flood if the wall would fail.)

  38. Elena Irwin, Joyce Chen elected to AAEA roles

    Two faculty members in CFAES’ Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) are taking on leadership roles with their professional organization, the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association (AAEA). 

    Elena Irwin, professor of environmental economics, was elected to serve on AAEA’s executive board. Joyce Chen, associate professor specializing in development economics, was elected chair of the Committee on Women in Agricultural Economics, a section of AAEA that promotes the welfare of women and other underrepresented groups in agricultural economics. 

    Read more.

  39. Record 5 IFT awards for Food Science and Technology

    Faculty with CFAES’ Department of Food Science and Technology received a record five awards in the Institute of Food Technologists’ (IFT) annual Achievement Awards program. Honored were Valente Alvarez, Bor S. Luh International Award; Mary Kay Pohlschneider, Elizabeth Fleming Stier Award; Ahmed Yousef, Gerhard Haas Award; Ken Lee, Myron Solberg Award; and M. Monica Giusti, William V. Cruess Excellence in Teaching Award. 

    “This unprecedented global visibility advances our recruitment, retention, and competitiveness at all levels,” Lee wrote in an email announcing the awards. “With this record, the best is yet to come.”

  40. Ohio Farm Bureau marker unveiled in Columbus

    CFAES celebrated Ohio Farm Bureau’s 100th anniversary last month with the unveiling of a historical marker in front of Jennings Hall on Ohio State’s Columbus campus, the location of the first Ohio Farm Bureau meeting in January 1919. Speaking at the ceremony were (from left) Brent Porteus, former Ohio Farm Bureau president and current Ohio State trustee and Nationwide director; Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State’s vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES; Frank Burkett III, president of Ohio Farm Bureau; and Adam Sharp, executive vice president of Ohio Farm Bureau.

    Kress, in her comments to the crowd, said, “When you take up the challenge of agriculture, essentially what we all commit ourselves to is an important purpose, a compelling mission. What we all do is, we sustain life. Congratulations, Ohio Farm Bureau, happy birthday, and welcome home.”

    Dean Kress speaks at the ceremony

    Read further coverage. (Photos: Ken Chamberlain, CFAES.)

  41. Rattan Lal wins Japan Prize

    Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources, has been awarded the 2019 Japan Prize, considered one of the most prestigious honors in science and technology. He is the first Ohio State scientist and the first soil scientist to ever receive the award.

    The Japan Prize recognizes scientists and engineers from around the world for original and outstanding achievements that “not only contribute to the advancement of science and technology, but also promote peace and prosperity for all mankind,” the Japan Prize Foundation said in its Jan. 16 announcement of the award.

    Read the full story.

  42. Two CFAES students named NOAA Knauss Fellows

    CFAES students Anna Apostel, a PhD candidate in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), and Elizabeth Berg, a master’s degree student in the School of Environment and Natural Resources, have been chosen to be among the 40th class of National Sea Grant’s prestigious John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship, a yearlong program that places highly qualified graduate students in host offices in the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government.

    Apostel will be serving as international ocean liaison for the Global Ocean Monitoring and Observing program in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research. Berg will be working in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs.

    Read more.—Jill Jentes, Assistant Director and Communications Coordinator, Ohio Sea Grant

  43. A tooting of horns: OARDC honors nearly 100 faculty, staff

    CFAES’s research arm, OARDC, honored the service of nearly 100 faculty and staff members at its annual Employee Appreciation Night on Oct. 5 in Wooster. Leading the honorees was Harold Keener, professor and associate chair, Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), who this year celebrated a half century of service to the center.

    50 years of service

    Keener, a leading expert on the engineering of composting systems, began his OARDC career in 1968 as an instructor in the Department of Agricultural Engineering, became assistant professor and eventually professor, was appointed associate chair of FABE in 2006, retired in 2009, and continues to serve as associate chair.

    “Harold has contributed 50 years to OARDC, FABE, and the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences,” Wooster Campus Director Dave Benfield said. “He’s a world-renowned scholar and educator in his field and has contributed to the mentorship of numerous faculty and students. His contributions to science and OARDC will leave a lasting legacy.”

    45 years of service

    Linda Saif, Distinguished University Professor with the Food Animal Health Research Program (FAHRP) and an internationally known virologist and immunologist, was next on the list of service awards, celebrating 45 years with the center. Among her many achievements, Saif is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and is an elected Fellow of the American College of Veterinary Microbiologists, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Microbiology.

    OARDC Outstanding Staff Award winners

    The event also honored the OARDC Outstanding Staff Award winners: Jane E. Douglas, Human Resources, Wooster; and Mary Wicks, FABE, Wooster. The awards, which honor excellent service to customers and colleagues, are given each year to two nonfaculty OARDC employees.

    Jane Douglas

    Jane Douglas

    Douglas, a human resources specialist, “tirelessly promotes wellness, diversity and inclusion, and camaraderie, and develops ideas for team and relationship building to unite folks across campus, across the college and within the community,” one of her nominators wrote. “She is a mentor, adviser, advocate, partner, leader, team player and friend to everyone she works with.”

    Wicks, program coordinator for the Ohio Composting and Manure Management program and the Program for Bioproducts and the Environment, “will take on any assignment with leadership and completes it with dedication and efficiency,” a nominator wrote. “She is a team player with a positive mental attitude that is contagious. Her spirit keeps people engaged.”

    Mary Wicks

    Mary Wicks

    Service awards also went to the following faculty and staff; OARDC’s 2017 retirees also were recognized during the event.

    40 years of service

    Bruce A. Williams, Research Operations, Wooster; Jerry Zeltner, Outlying Research Stations, Northwest.

    35 years of service

    Michael Davis, Animal Sciences, Columbus; Thomas Gilt, Shisler Conference Center, Wooster; Francis Fluharty, Animal Sciences, Wooster; Ron Kline, Information Technology, Wooster; Michelle Milligan, Animal Sciences, Columbus; Keith Patterson, Animal Sciences, Wooster.

    30 years of service

    D. Douglas Clevenger, Animal Sciences, Wooster; David J. Drake Sr., Public Safety, Wooster; Jeffrey Firkins, Animal Sciences, Columbus; Phil Harbaugh, Facilities Services, Wooster; Casey Hoy, Campus and Farms Admin, Wooster; Pablo Jourdan, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Rattan Lal, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Michael Lilburn, Animal Sciences, Wooster; Mark Loux, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Patricia Patterson, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Michael Pattison, Facilities Services, Wooster; Emilie Regnier, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Sudhir Sastry, FABE, Columbus; Joseph Scheerens, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Robin Weimer, FAHRP, Wooster; Michael Wengerd, Research Operations, Wooster.

    25 years of service

    Veronique Beckrum, Plant Pathology, Columbus; Karen Dodrill, Human Resources, Wooster; Shelly Dee Jepsen, FABE, Columbus; David Kraybill, Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), Columbus; Edwin Pickenpaugh, Outlying Research Stations, Eastern; Anthony Stull, Food Science and Technology, Columbus; R. Mark Sulc, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus.

    20 years of service

    Joseph Cochran, Secrest Arboretum, Wooster; Christopher S. Dicus, Information Technology, Wooster; Anne Dorrance, Plant Pathology, Wooster; Catherine Herms, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Dan Herms, Entomology, Wooster; Duc Hua, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Jyan-Chyun Jang, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Lynn Knipe, Food Science and Technology, Columbus; Don Kosier, Research Operations, Wooster; April Martin, Marketing and Communications, Wooster; Brian Slater, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Alfred Soboyejo, FABE, Columbus; Pamela Thomas, Administration, Columbus; Julie Townsend, Food Science and Technology, Columbus; Mary Lou Wile, Facilities Services, Wooster.

    15 years of service

    V.M. Balasubramaniam, Food Science and Technology, Columbus; Gary Crocker, Grace Drake Ag Lab, Wooster; Elaine Eberlin, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Loren D. Harper, Director’s Office, Wooster; Khandakar R. Islam, OSU South Centers, Piketon; Lori Jones, Entomology, Wooster; David Mackey, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Debra Shaffer, Fisher/Stone House, Wooster; Sonia Walker, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Gwen Zimmerly, Secrest Arboretum, Wooster.

    10 years of service

    Kimberly Brown, Marketing and Communications, Wooster; Jeremy Bruskotter, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Qian Chen, FABE, Columbus; Nathan Douridas, Molly Caren Agricultural Center, London; Warren DuBois, Facilities Services, Wooster; Jane Erbe, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Thaddeus Ezeji, Animal Sciences, Wooster; Maria Elena Hernandez Gonzalez, Molecular and Cellular Imaging Center, Wooster; Michael Kelly, Plant Pathology, Columbus; Timothy Kerr, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Ginger Koozer, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Stephen Matthews, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; Christopher McCormack, Hawk’s Nest Golf Course, Creston; Casey Meek, Grace Drake Ag Lab, Wooster; Andrew Michel, Entomology, Wooster; Thomas Mitchell, Plant Pathology, Columbus; Kimberly Nolletti, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Pamela Schlegel, Grant Development and Support Unit, Wooster; Mark Smith, Hawk’s Nest Golf Course, Creston; Yeunsu Suh, Animal Sciences, Columbus; Lingling Wang, Animal Sciences, Columbus; Qiuhong Wang, FAHRP, Wooster; Jody Whittier, Molecular and Cellular Imaging Center, Wooster.

    2017 retirees

    Herbert Ockerman, Animal Sciences, Columbus; David Scurlock, Horticulture and Crop Science, Wooster; Kevin Jewell, STAR Lab, Wooster; Clayton Dygert, Environment and Natural Resources, Wooster; Julia Hering, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Patricia Patterson, Environment and Natural Resources, Columbus; David Kost, OSU South Centers, Piketon; Jamie Cano, Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership, Columbus; Diane Hartzler, Entomology, Wooster; David Shetlar, Entomology, Columbus; Beverly Barrick, FABE, Columbus; Kathy Jo Burkholder, Horticulture and Crop Science, Columbus; Brian Johnson, Facilities Services, Wooster; Mary Lou Wile, Facilities Services, Wooster; Bruce A. Williams, Research Operations, Wooster.

    Benfield, CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress and Wooster Campus Assistant Director Rhonda Billman spoke and led the program, which drew a full house for dinner in the main conference hall of the campus’s Shisler Conference Center.

    OARDC-funded faculty and staff work in Wooster, at the OSU South Centers in Piketon, on Ohio State’s Columbus campus and at eight outlying agricultural research stations around Ohio.

    (Photos: Ohio State University Communications, top; Ken Chamberlain, Marketing and Communications, portraits.)

  44. FABE’s US News ranking is something to cheer about

    Congratulations to CFAES’ Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), whose graduate program moved up from a ranking of 11th to ninth in the biological and agricultural engineering category (tied with the University of Nebraska, Lincoln) in the U.S. News and World Report 2020 edition of America’s Best Graduate Schools. FABE Chair Scott Shearer, in an email announcing the news, said, “The credit goes to the FABE faculty and staff.”

    In all, 15 of Ohio State’s graduate and professional programs ranked in the top 10 nationally, and three ranked best in the nation.

    Read more.

  45. ‘Inspirations to our students and the entire CFAES community’

    Congratulations to those who were honored at CFAES’ Alumni Awards luncheon on March 2: Bob Birkenholz and Virgil Strickler, Meritorious Service Award; Bryan Garton, Steve Goodwin, Chris Henney, Phil Minerich, Floyd Poruban, and Kristi-Warren Scott, Distinguished Alumni Award; Leandro Cruppe and Richard Edema, International Alumni Award; and Leah Curtis and Bo Harstine, Young Professional Award.

    “Our alumni serve as inspirations to our students and the entire CFAES community,” CFAES Dean Cathann A. Kress said. “They improve our college, their industries, and our world through their work.”

    Read more about the event and the honorees. Watch videos about Birkenholz and Strickler on the front page of this newsletter.

  46. Extension’s Mike Hogan wins OEFFA Service Award

    Congratulations to Mike Hogan, who received the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association’s (OEFFA) 2019 Service Award at the group’s recent annual conference. An educator in the Franklin County office of OSU Extension, Hogan has spent his 32-year career working with sustainable, alternative, organic, and small-scale farmers. For the past 21 years, he has served as Ohio state co-coordinator for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program; and for more than a decade he has partnered with OEFFA on the Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series and on workshops presented at the conference. He is pictured with Carol Goland, OEFFA’s executive director. 

    “Mike’s long-term dedication to family farming has been instrumental in increasing the acceptance, understanding, and adoption of sustainable and organic practices in Ohio,” SARE Outreach Specialist Sean McGovern said. “The continuing collaboration between Ohio State and OEFFA to host farm tours is a testament to Mike’s understanding that farmers, researchers, and Extension work best when they work together.”

    Read the full story. (Photo: Ed Chen, OEFFA.)

  47. Tom Mitchell named chair of Plant Pathology

    CFAES has appointed a professor with additional experience in local government as the new chair of the Department of Plant Pathology. Along with an extensive academic career, Tom Mitchell, a professor of fungal biology and molecular genetics in the department, has served as a trustee in Delaware County’s Liberty Township, located north of Columbus. In that role, Mitchell served a population of nearly 20,000, managed a budget of over $11 million, oversaw 72 employees, and led negotiations on union contracts.

    “The experiences I had as a township trustee are far different than any I would normally encounter as an academic,” Mitchell said. “They taught me valuable leadership lessons that I continually apply on campus.”

    Read the full story.

  48. Agricultural Systems Management Club makes a difference

    Last year, the Agricultural Systems Management (ASM) Club inquired about a partnership with Ohio AgrAbility to identify Ohio farmers with disabilities who could use a helping hand with farm work, cleanup or any other projects around the farm. This fall, the partnership resulted in 11 ASM students going to Fredericktown, Ohio, to work on the farm of Clarence Atkinson and Deborah Mattix, two AgrAbility clients. “All I can say is, ‘Wow,’” Atkinson said. “The students who came to our farm were great. We did not have to instruct them very much at all. We showed them what we needed done, and they just did it.”

    “They made the shade structure, cleaned the mow and the grainery in the first two hours, then did the cement in the holes, cut some trees from the gateway, helped move gate and cattle panels, loaded my six-wheeler on a trailer, and moved the hay elevator to the window in the barn by hand. They helped by getting the battery out of our old Ford, then they changed the oil in my 165 Ferguson. ... These students were very polite, hard workers and had fun doing it. Just wonderful people to know, and it is so hard to thank them enough.”

    Read more on the CFAES Stories site.

  49. Ohio State law student takes 1st in AALA poster competition, teams to win Quiz Bowl

    Ohio State’s Evin Bachelor (pictured) won the Student Poster Competition at the American Agricultural Law Association’s annual educational symposium in Louisville, Kentucky, in late October. His project, titled “Ohio: The Midwestern Ag Mediation Holdout,” discussed the potential for Ohio to become one of the last midwestern states to engage in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Mediation Program.

    Bachelor is a third-year law student in Ohio State’s Moritz College of Law.

    Also during the symposium, Bachelor and Devon Alexander of the Capital University Law School took top honors in the Student Quiz Bowl, a competition that requires law students to correctly answer questions about law, agriculture and agricultural law. Bachelor and Alexander joined forces with University of Houston law student Sara Luther to claim Ohio’s first-ever Quiz Bowl victory.

    The students were able to attend the conference with the generous support of the Paul L. Wright Endowment in Agricultural Law at Ohio State.—Peggy Hall, OSU Extension

  50. Farm Science Review wrapup: A challenging year for farmers, but still ‘optimism’

    Even during a challenging year for farmers, CFAES’ 57th annual Farm Science Review topped recent years’ visitor totals with its first-ever career fair, more than a hundred educational talks, and new technology. 

    This year’s late harvest helped boost attendance at the show, which attracted 114,590 people during its three days, Sept. 17–19. Often at this time of year, farmers are driving their combines to harvest their crops. Instead, some were eyeing the brand-new combines and tractors displayed at the show, taking pictures of their children and grandchildren behind the wheel.

    Read the full story.

  51. New Buckeye will grow buckeyes, and a literal forest more

    Jason Veil has been named the new curator of Secrest Arboretum on CFAES’s Wooster Campus. He starts Jan. 16, 2018.

    Veil brings nearly 20 years of experience in the green industry and in public garden management to his new position, most recently serving as horticulture director for The Trustees of Reservations in Massachusetts, where he coordinated the initial documentation, improvement and promotional efforts of 11 diverse public garden properties across the state.

    He has a bachelor’s degree in urban forestry from Penn State University and a master’s degree in plant collections curation and management from the University of Delaware.

    Experience, enthusiasm, inspiration

    “I want to thank the faculty and staff who participated in the search committee,” Dave Benfield, Wooster Campus director, said in an Oct. 20 email to faculty and staff. “This position is extremely important to the college and the community of Wooster. We were fortunate enough to have a competitive pool of candidates, and their work helped identify the individuals that were best suited for this position.

    “I believe Jason’s education and experience along with his enthusiasm and compassion for plants will not only enhance the Secrest Arboretum but also inspire the next generation of horticulturists.”

  52. ‘Being here has provided me a sense of belonging’

    Eighteen central Ohio military veterans spent this past summer farming at CFAES’ Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory in Columbus. As participants in a pilot project called the Veteran Farming Program—organized by the Central Ohio VA Healthcare System and CFAES’ OSU Extension outreach arm—the veterans gained farming and gardening skills while benefiting from the activities’ therapeutic aspects. They graduated from the program earlier this month.

    “I used to farm when I was younger,” said Vietnam veteran Bob Udeck, 74. “It feels really good to get your hands dirty again—planting something, nurturing it, and watching it produce.”

    Read the full story on our CFAES Stories site.

  53. Rattan Lal, CFAES’ Japan Prize laureate, to speak at Ohio State summer commencement

    CFAES’ Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science and one of Ohio State’s most decorated faculty researchers, will address the university’s 1,500 summer graduates on Aug. 4 at the Jerome Schottenstein Center on the Columbus campus. Among his honors, Lal received the Japan Prize in April in Tokyo.

    “I am pleased to welcome Distinguished University Professor Rattan Lal to speak at our 422nd commencement ceremony this summer,” Ohio State President Michael V. Drake said. “A world-renowned scholar and Buckeye alumnus, Dr. Lal has devoted his career to addressing some of the most pressing issues of our time, from food scarcity to climate change—scholarship that will uplift and inspire our graduates as they prepare to make their own mark on our world.”

    Read more.

  54. Smokin’! Bacon vending machine proves a hit

    Business was sizzling last month in CFAES’ Animal Science Building. A new bacon vending machine drew lines of customers—students, faculty, staff, even CFAES Dean Cathann Kress and Ohio State President Michael Drake—and attention from local, national, and international media. Frequent refills were needed; people pigged out. The Ohio Pork Council developed the machine with help from CFAES student Meghann Winters, a senior agricultural communication major who works as the council’s communications coordinator. Planned to be temporary, the machine was installed for finals week, stayed in place through Dec. 13, and then was herded away. It served to raise funds for the Meat Science Club.

    Read more about it on the Department of Animal Sciences’ website. Check out media coverage examples by USA Today, NBC’s Today Show, and the Columbus DispatchSee further examples of the coverage here and under “In the News” in this newsletter. Watch our own CFAES video about the machine here.

  55. Cody McClain receives national ag education scholarship

    Cody McClain, a senior in agriscience education from Nevada, Ohio, has been selected for a $1,500 Upper Division Agricultural Education Scholarship from the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE). NAAE awards 20 such scholarships to students across the United States to help offset their expenses while they’re student teaching. Selection is based on academic performance and leadership and service activities. McClain will be student teaching at National Trail High School in New Paris, Ohio, during spring semester 2019.

    “Our department was thrilled to learn of Cody as a recipient of this scholarship. Receiving this scholarship is an honor on a national scale, and Cody is very deserving of that honor,” said Tracy Kitchel, professor and chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership. “Working a full-time position as a student teacher, in addition to evening and weekend activities that come along with the profession, can be financially challenging. This scholarship will help overcome those challenges for Cody.”

  56. Sign up for Equity and Inclusion workshops

    The Office of Equity and Inclusion’s spring-summer 2019 workshop schedule is now available. Each month, Leo Taylor (taylor.3408@osu.edu), program director of Equity and Inclusion, will facilitate a workshop on the Columbus and Wooster campuses on a topic related to diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice. These free workshops, available to all CFAES faculty, staff, and postdocs, are a wonderful opportunity for personal growth and professional development. Registration is required due to limited space. January’s workshop, “Cultivating an Inclusive Environment: Recognizing and Responding to Unconscious Bias,” was held on Jan. 11 in Columbus and will be held on Jan. 25 in Wooster. It will be offered again in April.

    Registration for the February workshops (Feb. 8 in Columbus; Feb. 22 in Wooster) is now underway. Titled “Identity, Power, and Privilege”, the program will explore what it means to have and lack privilege, the complexity of social identities, and how to use power and privilege to disrupt the cycle of oppression. Participants will identify their social identities, begin to uncover sources of bias that have been reinforced by socialization, develop skills for effective allyship, and learn how implementing even the smallest of changes can transform an individual into an agent of change in their communities and profession.

    Find the complete schedule of upcoming workshops.

  57. Chadwick Arboretum holds 7th annual ArboBlitz

    Ohio State and CFAES’s Chadwick Arboretum hosted the seventh annual ArboBlitz on Oct. 30. The event, a service learning event for students, faculty and staff, took place this year at two adjacent sites on the Columbus campus — on opposite corners of Millikin Road and the newly renamed Annie and John Glenn Avenue, formerly 17th Avenue.

    “We work with the STEP program to recruit students to the tree planting,” Chadwick Arboretum Director Mary Maloney said in an email after the event. “This is usually their first time planting a tree.”

    Growing a ‘Tree Campus USA’

    The event “also fulfills one of the five criteria for receiving our prestigious Tree Campus USA certification from the Arbor Day Foundation,” she said.

    Some 25 native trees were sourced from Dan Struve, professor emeritus, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, for planting. Ohio State’s Facilities Operations and Development (FOD) department — specifically, Steve Volkmann, Steve Schneider and Andrew Neil — prepared the site, checked for utilities and brought compost; Neil also mapped the trees. Volunteers from the Friends of the Lower Olentangy Watershed group provided shovels. Chadwick Arboretum supplied shovels, too, and also bought watering bags for the trees.

    The plantings add to the Columbus campus’s inventory of an estimated 50,000 trees, which Chadwick Arboretum volunteers are continuing to identify, measure and map.

    Return of the natives

    After the event, Steve Rissing, professor in Ohio State’s Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, in an email to FOD’s Volmann, said, “I noted with some trepidation the holes dug in the area in front of the PAES building when I walked by yesterday; that same area has been the site of a brief (thank goodness) population of (pioneer?) hybrid elms never before seen by any member of the local ecological community.

    “So, imagine my surprise and joy to see the diverse array of native species there this morning, and such excellent choices at that! Butternut and even sassafras (one of my favorite trees, says one of the charter members of the Sassafras Audubon Society in Monroe County, Indiana!).

    “The (temporary?) stakes even have common names — as in, ‘What a nice looking tree, I should get one of these in my yard.’

    “If you are working on permanent signage, I would be happy to help. We could build an outside self-guided tour.”

    “Bottom line: Very well done, indeed.”

    (Photo: Young sassafras in fall by Dow Gardens via Bugwood.org.)

  58. ATI, CFAES career expos coming soon

    Two career expos for CFAES students are slated to come in February. The Ohio State ATI Career Expo is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 6 in the Student Activities Center in Wooster. The CFAES Spring Career Expo, covering three groups of industries—Environment and Sustainability, Food and Agricultural Sciences, and Construction—goes from 2–6 p.m. Feb. 13 in the Ohio Union in Columbus.

    At both events, students get to interact with businesses and employers about internships, full- and part-time jobs, and admission to graduate and professional schools.

    Find out more.

  59. Whittington to direct Ohio State’s STEP Program

    Congratulations to CFAES’s M. Susie Whittington (pictured with her husband, Pat, CFAES’s assistant dean, student development). Whittington, professor and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership, has been named director of Ohio State’s Second-Year Transformational Experience Program (STEP). Her appointment took effect in late October.

    As STEP’s director, Whittington will coordinate with the Office of Undergraduate Education and Senior Vice President for Student Life Javaune Adams-Gaston to provide leadership for STEP’s faculty endeavors.

    Read Beth Hume’s (Vice Provost, Undergraduate Studies) announcement of the appointment.

  60. New dean greets college in Columbus and Wooster

    CFAES Dean Cathann Kress and South Centers Director Tom Worley

    Faculty, staff and students crowded the Agricultural Administration auditorium and the North Exhibit Area in Fisher Auditorium in Wooster to greet the new vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES on May 3 and 4.

    Cathann A. Kress started her new position at Ohio State on May 1 and handed out diplomas on both campuses during her first week on the job. In the photo, she speaks with Tom Worley, director of Ohio State South Centers.

    Kress came to Ohio from Iowa, where she served as vice president for extension and outreach and director of cooperative extension at Iowa State University.

    "I’m thrilled to be joining the great community of people and scholars at Ohio State," Kress said in an interview. "The college has a tremendous opportunity to lead in the grand challenges facing the world: Food security and the entire supply chain; future leadership in agriculture; and communicating and working with consumers about what we do."

  61. Sustainable beef talk video available

    Couldn’t make “Beef in a Sustainable Food System,” the featured presentation by Sara Place in Columbus? You can watch it in its entirety here or below.

    Place, who is senior director of sustainable beef production research for the National Cattlemen’s Association, spoke Jan. 11 in the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, presented by CFAES and the Ohio Beef Council. Her talk highlighted the "complexity of a sustainable food system.” Topics included greenhouse gas emissions, ecosystem services, upcycling, and land use. In the photo, Lyda Garcia of the Department of Animal Sciences talks to high school students after the presentation (photo: Ken Chamberlain, CFAES).

  62. John Finer receives lifetime achievement award

    John Finer at podium

    John Finer received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for In Vitro Biology (SIVB) on June 3 in St. Louis.

    "The SIVB Board of Directors agreed unanimously that your contributions were of the highest scientific, professional, and humanitarian level to be awarded the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award," said Dwight Tomes, SIVB president, in a letter to Finer.

    The honor is awarded to those scientists who have achieved academic excellence in their field of study, and to honor those who have made significant contributions to the field of in vitro biology, and/or in the development of novel technologies that have advanced in vitro biology.

    Finer received his MS and PhD in Roberta Smith’s laboratory at Texas A&M University. After a post-doc at Ciba-Geigy, working on cotton tissue culture and transformation, he joined the faculty at The Ohio State University at the CFAES Wooster campus where he works for the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

    He established embryogenic suspension cultures systems for many plants, including soybeans and cotton. His Ohio State lab was the first university lab to report consistent generation of transgenic soybeans, cotton and maize using particle bombardment of embryogenic suspension cultures.

    He developed the “10A40N” medium, which later became known as “Finer and Nagasawa” medium for growing embryogenic cultures of soybeans. In the early 1990’s, he constructed an inexpensive and easy-to-assemble gene gun, which he called the PIG (Particle Inflow Gun). The PIG is in widespread use for gene introduction in labs all over the world.

    Finer also developed SAAT (Sonication Assisted Agrobacterium-mediated Transformation), which also remains in widespread use in many plant transformation laboratories. SAAT was patented and licensed, and has become a base technology for many of the commercial transgenics in the field today.

    This development is one that stands out most to Finer. "That method is in widespread use around the planet and has been used for production of many of the plants that are in the fields today. I guess that we were a little ahead of the times with this as it took some time to be adopted," he said. "But, SAAT has now become a standard method for DNA introduction in plants. We have made other discoveries that I have been equally excited about but these have not yet been picked up by the broader plant sciences community."

    While Finer continues to work to improve tissue culture and transformation efficiencies in plants (mostly soybeans), his more recent research efforts have shifted to isolation and characterization of promoters using GFP and genome editing approaches. He has developed a toolbox of soybean promoters and has characterized many of them, identifying the regulatory elements within the promoters that contribute to gene expression.

    A Glycine max ubiquitin (Gmubi) promoter has received the most attention, and elements within both the promoter and the 5’UTR intronic region were identified.

    Within SIVB, Finer has served on the executive committee as a member-at-large and was the secretary for two terms. He was vice-chair and chair of the plant division, and was responsible for fund-raising for the division as vice-chair. He has also served as an Associate Editor, Reviews Editor, and Editor-in-Chief for the society journal, In Vitro Cellular and Developmental Biology – Plant.

  63. Cochran, Niblack attend national Food Systems Leadership Institute

    CFAES's Graham Cochran, interim senior administrative officer, and Terry Niblack, senior associate dean, last month attended the Fall 2017 Food Systems Leadership Institute (FSLI), an executive leadership development program for academia, industry and government.

    The FSLI program enhances personal and professional development by emphasizing leadership competencies, skills for organizational change, and a broad, interdisciplinary perspective of food systems. The experience prepares scholars for upper-level leadership roles in food system programs, and to assume broader leadership responsibilities within their organizations.

    During the FSLI program, scholars work with expert instructors, leadership development coaches and an upper-level mentor to help increase their leadership abilities. They meet with leaders of universities, political leaders, industry leaders and others who have advanced to the highest levels of leadership. Leadership theory is combined with practical experience, often in the context of food systems and higher education.

    The FSLI is a two-year program. Year one includes intensive executive education-style residential learning sessions at three university locations. Scholars perform assessments to increase their self-awareness of their leadership style, and the results are used to develop and implement a personal development plan, prepared with the assistance of a professional coach. Interactive distance learning is used between residential sessions.

    During year two, participants work, applying what they have learned, to develop and carry out an individual leadership project.

    Additional information is available at fsli.org.

    FSLI is dedicated to advancing and strengthening food systems by preparing a set of new leaders with the skills and knowledge necessary to invent and reinvent the food systems of the future. It is a program of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), with the initial funding provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. North Carolina State University is the host site, with Ohio State and California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, being residential sites responsible for implementation of the program.

  64. Laquore Meadows named ACE Fellow

    Photo of LaQuore Meadows

    The American Council on Education (ACE) has chosen an Ohio State University Extension county director for its prestigious ACE Fellows Program.

    Laquore Meadows, director of the Franklin County Extension office will join 45 other college and university leaders for the fall kickoff of this intensive, yearlong leadership program.

    Launched in 1965, the program condenses years of on-the-job experience and skill development into a single year. According to the council, 80 percent of its fellows go on to serve as chief executive officers, chief academic officers, deans and in other cabinet-level positions.

    “Laquore is an innovative administrator committed to enhancing the effectiveness of OSU Extension,” said Roger Rennekamp, director of OSU Extension.

    “Her unbridled optimism allows her to see possibilities that others may miss,” Rennekamp said. “She understands how internal and external partnerships can add value to Extension’s work with individuals, families and communities.”

    As a first-generation college graduate, Meadows said being named an ACE fellow “is much more significant than an honor.”

    “This is a pivotal axis point in my career,” she said. “I am immensely grateful to have the opportunity to learn in the midst of some of the brightest minds in academia.”

    Fellows observe and work with the ACE president and other senior officers at their host institutions, attend decision-making meetings, and focus on issues of interest, according to an ACE news release. Fellows also conduct projects of pressing concern for their home institutions.

    Meadows plans to focus on promoting collaboration between Ohio State and Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, which is a historically black university and was designated a land-grant institution in 2014.

    “It will be my responsibility to see how we might best build an interinstitutional infrastructure that enables our partnership to realize sustained collective impact and most importantly enhance the lives of Ohioans through our combined efforts,” Meadows said.

    The ACE Fellows Program plays a key role in cultivating leadership for higher education, ACE President Molly Corbett Broad said in a news release.

    “The diverse and talented 2017-18 Fellows Class demonstrates why the program has made such a vital contribution for more than a half century to expanding the leadership pipeline for our colleges and universities,” Corbett Broad said.

    At the conclusion of the fellowship year, fellows return to their home institutions with new knowledge and skills that contribute to capacity-building efforts, along with a network of peers across the country and abroad, the news release said.

    Meadows has served on more than a dozen nonprofit, state, regional and international boards. In addition to her board service, she has won several awards for her leadership in higher education, is a published author, and has delivered over 30 professional conference presentations, symposia and workshops.

    Meadows is a graduate of Tennessee State University where she received her bachelor’s degree in psychology. She later acquired a master’s degree in college student personnel from Miami University and a PhD in higher education administration from Ohio University.

  65. Three CFAES faculty members elected to Faculty Council/University Senate


    Three CFAES faculty members were elected to The Ohio State University Faculty Council for the 2019-2021 term: Enrico Bonello, Gregory LaBarge, and Ken Lee.

    They join other CFAES faculty: Judy Villard, Peggy Hall, and Julie Fox’s terms end in 2018. Brent Sohngen and Michael Hogan’s terms end in 2019. Jeff McCutcheon and Chris Penrose’s terms end in 2020.

    The Faculty Council is a part of the University Senate. 

    The Senate is a body of 137 members representing three constituencies: faculty, administration, and students. The 70 faculty members represent faculty of the 18 colleges, the University Libraries, the Military Sciences, and the four regional campuses.

    The 26 members of the administration include the president, who serves as presiding officer of the Senate, the 18 college deans, the executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, the senior vice president for business and finance, the senior vice president for research, the executive dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, the executive dean of the regional campuses, the dean of the Graduate School, and the director of libraries.

    The 41 student representatives include 26 from the Undergraduate Student Government, 10 from the Council of Graduate Students, and five from the Inter-Professional Council.

    The University Senate, subject to the authority of the Board of Trustees, has the power:

    • to establish the educational and academic policies of the university
    • to recommend the establishment, abolition, and alteration of educational units and programs of study
    • to recommend candidates for honorary degrees to the Board of Trustees
    • to recommend candidates for degrees and certificates (reserved for the faculty and administrative members of the university senate)
    • to consider, to make recommendations concerning, to act upon matters relating to the rights, responsibilities, and concerns of students, faculty, administrators, and staff
  66. Norma Unverferth awarded 2018 OSU Distinguished Staff Award

    Norma Unverferth, Putnam County office associate, received the university's Distinguished Staff Award in May.

    The Distinguished Staff Award, the university’s highest staff recognition, annually honors 12 outstanding staff members who have made a significant impact at The Ohio State University. Recipients are recognized for their exceptional leadership, accomplishments, and service to Ohio State.Norma Unverferth

    Unverferth's nominators, Jason Hedrick and Beth Scheckelhoff, said this in her nomination materials:

    • Norma was instrumental in piloting the first OSU Extension shared support staff model in the state between Putnam and Van Wert Counties . . . today, it is used as a roadmap for similar Extension support staff arrangements.
    • Norma continually looks for opportunities to improve office operations and provide insight and mentoring for all staff in Putnam county, as well as for counties with limited resources.
    • Noticing the lights on one Saturday when she drove by the office, she found the county maintenance department handling a plumbing issue, with two inches of water in some offices. She removed materials from the flooded areas and unpacked them to dry. On Monday, she repacked the items and returned them to their original place. She assumed the work without asking any other staff member to help.
    • Norma is an integral part of the 4-H program in Putnam County. She serves on county interview committees to select 4-H camp counselors and junior fair board members as well as attends the local 4-H camp to support camp programming, youth risk management, and to provide adult supervision.
    • In addition to her many qualifications and abilities, Norma’s welcoming and friendly demeanor creates a warm and inviting atmosphere when clients come into the office. All staff consider Norma to be a trusted and reliable coworker and friend.

    Award recipients are nominated and carefully chosen by the selection committee based on the following contributions:

    • Enhancing the quality of work life for colleagues or customers
    • Providing outstanding and ongoing service to university stakeholders
    • Developing creative solutions to increase department or university operations
    • Consistent demonstration of one or more of the university’s values

    Recipients were celebrated and congratulated by Ohio State leaders, including President Michael V. Drake, MD, at a luncheon on Friday, May 4, at the Longaberger Alumni House. This year’s winners also received a $1,500 cash award, $700 base salary increase and crystal trophy. Additionally, the recipients will be honored on the field at Ohio Stadium during the September 22 Ohio State football game.

    Another Distinguished Staff Award winner from the college, Benjamin Carignan, was featured in the May issue of CFAES Monthly.

  67. Four CFAES Food Scientists to Receive National Honors

    Star with 2018 Awards text.

    CFAES Food Science and Technology faculty will receive four out of 16 Achievement Awards from the Institute of Food Technologists.

    The awards recognize IFT members (teams or individuals) for remarkable contributions in research, applications, and service in the food science and technology industry. Each recipient will be recognized on July 15, 2018, at the IFT18 Awards Celebration.

    From CFAES, award winners include:

    • Nicolas Appert Award: Dennis R. Heldman
    • Stephen S. Chang Award for Lipid or Flavor Science: Devin Peterson
    • William V. Cruess Award for Excellence in Teaching: Luis Rodriguez-Saona
    • Samuel Cate Prescott Award for Research: Barbara Kowalcyk

    Information about the awards can be found here: http://www.ift.org/membership/awards-and-recognition/award-recipients.aspx.


  68. Chadwick, university, celebrate arbor day

    Mary Maloney

    Chadwick Arboretum & Learning Gardens celebrated trees on Arbor Day, April 21, with honors, awards and dedications.

    In the photo, Mary Maloney, Chadwick director, discusses Ohio State's Tree Campus USA Certification before presenting the honor to Steve Volkmann, university landscape architect and Lynn Readey, associate vice president, FOD.

    Among the other awards and recognitions:

    • Chadwick Arboretum Collaborator’s Award went to Norm Booth and Gail Zink  for their tireless efforts in preparing designs for the Learning Gardens, Maloney said. The two worked closely with Janet Oberliesen, Maloney's predecessor, from 1994 until 2000. 
    • International Society of Arboriculture Certified Arborist recognition went to Kelin Wilkins.
    • The Lorax Awards (for those who speak for the trees) went to Bill Johnson, Chadwick volunteer; Kathy Burkholder, Chadwick horticulturist; Wendy Bowman, Chadwick horticulturist; and Jim Vent, greenhouse coordinator. 
    • Recognition to Eagle Scouts Ryan Jenkins for contruction and installation of 20 bluebird nesting boxes at Chadwick Arboretum North and to Joseph Jenkins for construction and installation of two purple martin rigs at Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge.
    • Chadwick Arboretum Aesculus Lifetime Achievement Award to retiring Extension horticulture educator Jim Chatfield for his work with Why Trees Matter. 
    • Dedication: Newly planted trees during ArboBlitz 2016.
  69. Linda Saif elected to National Academy of Inventors

    Linda J. Saif was inducted into the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) on April 6. On the left in the photo is Andrew Hirshfeld, the commisioner for patents for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and on the right is Paul Sandberg, president of NAI.

    Saif is a Distinguished University Professor at Ohio State and heads the Reference Lab for Animal Coronaviruses for the World Health Organization and OIE-World Organization for Animal Health.

    The awards program described Saif as a virologist and immunologist who discovered new viruses of critical importance to farm animals, food safety and human health, and defined their zoonotic potential. She pioneered novel cultivation methods, gnotobiotic animal models and diagnostic assays, and her innovative research on maternal and neonatal immunity and immunoenhancers has led to viral vaccines to protect neonates.


  70. Renukaradhya Gourapura named Fellow of National Academy of Inventors

    CFAES researcher Renukaradhya Gourapura, who has developed a respiratory virus vaccine for pigs now licensed and used by the pork industry, has been named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI).

    A professor of veterinary preventive medicine with CFAES’ Food Animal Health Research Program, Gourapura joins a 2019 class of Fellows representing 136 research universities and governmental and nonprofit research institutes worldwide. He is the 10th Ohio State inventor to be chosen as a Fellow of the NAI. His lab uses nanotechnology techniques to create innovative delivery systems for mucosal vaccines that can be given to animals—and, someday, humans—through the nose.

    Read more.

  71. Awards and recognitions

    winning Dairy team

    The Ohio State Dairy Judging Team took first place in the National Intercollegiate Dairy Cattle Judging Contest held on Sept. 30 at the World Dairy Expo in Wisconsin. The members of the team (pictured left to right) included CFAES students Billy SmithIan Lokai, Sarah Lehner, and Lauren Almasy. Their coach was Bonnie Ayars, program specialist in the Department of Animal Sciences. Eighteen schools were part of the competition, which Ohio State last won in 1986. 

    Read more.

    aldo Leopold award 

    W. Alan Wentz, who earned his bachelor’s degree in agricultural and biological conservation from Ohio State and is a 1999 recipient of CFAES’ Distinguished Alumni Award, received the Aldo Leopold Memorial Award for distinguished service to wildlife conservation during the joint meeting of The Wildlife Society and the American Fisheries Society on Oct. 1 in Nevada. Named after wildlife conservation pioneer Aldo Leopold, the award is the highest honor given by the Maryland-based Wildlife Society. 

    “I am honored and humbled by this award,” said Wentz, a retired chief conservation officer for Ducks Unlimited, in a press release. “Growing up exploring the outdoors in Hardin County and other parts of Ohio made me curious to learn more. The Killdeer Plains Wildlife Area in Wyandot County was one of my favorite places due to the diversity of wildlife, especially waterfowl, found there, and when I learned you could study wildlife conservation in college, I knew that was the only thing I wanted to do for my career.”

    Read more here and here.

    Tech commercialization award

    Katrina Cornish, Ohio Research Scholar and Endowed Chair in Bio-based Emergent Materials with CFAES’ Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering and Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, has received the 2019 Ohio Faculty Council Technology Award. The award recognizes a faculty member in Ohio’s state university system for exceptional research discoveries and for the role the faculty member played in translating those discoveries into marketable products, services, or both. It was presented by Ohio Department of Higher Education Vice Chancellor Mike Duffy on Oct. 11 in Columbus.

    Cornish was honored for her accomplishments in developing and licensing technology that can extract material from the guayule shrub that can yield sustainable natural rubber latex products. Technology developed by her company, EnergyEne Inc., has resulted in products such as a natural latex radiation glove that meets FDA regulations for performance and protection.

    Read about the award.

    ACEL at AAAE conference

    Scott Scheer, interim chair of CFAES’ Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), reports the department was “well represented” at the North Central Region Conference of the American Association for Agricultural Education in October in Michigan, including by bringing the largest graduate student delegation to the event. Research paper presentations by ACEL faculty, staff, and graduate students included “Metacognition of Pre-service Teachers: A Phenomenology of Reflection-in-Action” by Aaron Giorgi, Amanda Bowling, and Caryn M. Filson, which earned honors as a Distinguished Abstract. A poster presentation by Rachel Ramsier and Joy Rumble, titled “When Three Become One: Impact of Three Academic Specializations Serving Students Through One Academic Organization,” took the second-place award in the Innovative Idea division.

    Visit the conference website.

    Forest of Honor

    The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry (DOF) honored Dave Apsley, natural resources specialist with OSU Extension, for his outstanding contributions to forestry in a “Forest of Honor” ceremony on Oct. 17 in Zaleski State Forest. Trees were planted in recognition of Apsley and two other honorees. Apsley’s name is “synonymous with forestry education in Ohio,” an ODNR press release said. “His outstanding leadership and innovation are based on his tireless hard work and ability to network to accomplish well-thought-out goals.”

    Apsley, among his work, is the primary coordinator and leader of the “A Day in the Woods” educational series, now in its eighth year at Vinton Furnace State Forest and other southeast Ohio locations. The series has reached more than 3,000 woodland owners and enthusiasts, who, combined, own some 125,000 acres of woodlands. 

    “ODNR and the Division of Forestry have been very supportive of OSU Extension’s efforts to sustain Ohio’s forests, especially in Appalachian Ohio,” Apsley said. “Partnering with ODNR-DOF has greatly expanded our capacity to positively impact the people and forests of the region.” 

    Read more.

    Borlaug Dialogue

    Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources, was an invited speaker at the World Food Prize’s 2019 Norman E. Borlaug International Symposium, known informally as the “Borlaug Dialogue,” held Oct. 16–18 in Des Moines, Iowa. The event brought together more than 1,200 people from more than 65 nations to address cutting-edge issues related to global food security and nutrition. The theme of the event was “Pax Agricultura: Peace Through Agriculture.” Lal spoke on a panel titled “Facing the Greatest Challenge of Our Time: Agriculture’s Role in Impacting Climate Change.”

    See details about the event and the lineup of speakers.

  72. CFAES offers students access to mental health help

    As part of Ohio State’s new mental health initiatives, CFAES now has its own mental health counselor. David Wirt, pictured, who’s a Buckeye himself (BS, psychology), is an “embedded counselor” with the college, meaning he's directly assigned to CFAES for its students. Ohio State’s embedded counselors are meant to provide more mental health resources for students, with the hopes that the students can access the embedded counselors sooner and more readily than they can the therapists on the university’s Counseling and Consultation Service general staff.

    “The biggest reasons students will talk to me are anxiety and depression,” Wirt said. “But students also have many other issues like relationship concerns and stress.”

    Read the full story.

  73. Center for Foodborne Illness comes to CFAES

    The Center for Foodborne Illness Research and Prevention (CFI) has brought its 13-year record of protecting public health to CFAES, becoming part of the college in August. Founded as a nonprofit organization in 2006, the center’s mission is to advance a more scientific, risk-based food safety system that prevents foodborne illnesses and protects public health by translating science into policy and practice, said Barbara Kowalcyk, a CFAES assistant professor of food science and technology and an internationally recognized food safety expert.

    “Access to affordable, safe, and nutritious food is increasingly critical in order to sustain the world’s growing population,” said Kowalcyk, who co-founded the center and serves as its director. “The establishment of CFI at Ohio State will build on the university’s extensive, existing efforts to address this critical challenge.”

    Read more. Also read: “From personal tragedy to worldwide mission.”

  74. Study finds gut, immune system benefits to kids growing up around animals

    Getting up close—and a little dirty—with farm animals just might help us fend off illness, say scientists who have further demonstrated the benefits of early exposure to a wide variety of environmental bacteria.

    A recent study co-led by Zhongtang Yu, professor of microbiology in CFAES’ Department of Animal Sciences, reported that bacteria and other microbes from rural Amish babies were far more diverse—in a beneficial way—than what was found in urban babies’ intestines. And, in a first-of-its-kind experiment, the researchers found evidence of how a healthier gut microbiome might lead to more robust development of the respiratory immune system.

    Read more in our recent CFAES Story.

  75. Instructure honors Laura Deeter, who teaches about plants using (virtual) zombies

    Laura Deeter, professor of horticulture technologies at Ohio State ATI, has won a 2019 Educator of the Year Award in the professor category in an awards program sponsored by the software company Instructure. The awards program, an Instructure press release said, “recognizes outstanding educators working to further teaching as well as shape the next generation of students.” Instructure makes an open online learning management system called Canvas.

    “I wanted to find a way to turn what I do and teach into something that’s fun,” Deeter is quoted as saying in the press release. “I took Canvas and all of the tools that come with it and turned my plant identification course into a game about plants and zombies. I learned a lot about how the students use the technology, and the students felt that they engaged more with the class.”

    Read Instructure’s press release here. Read a Q&A with Deeter, published by Ohio State’s Office of Distance Learning and eLearning, here.

  76. Student farmers are working for change

    Some students at Ohio State are spending their summer helping fight hunger.

    Working at the 4-acre Ohio State Student Farm, located at CFAES’ Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory in Columbus, the students are growing more than 30 kinds of fruits and vegetables, are learning about and practicing urban farming, and are donating some of their harvest to local food security efforts.

    For more information, read this story and watch the video below.

  77. Yiyun Lin goes to BIO 2019

    Yiyun Lin, PhD student in the lab of Michelle Jones, associate professor in CFAES’ Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, recently participated in the BIO 2019 I-Corps Bio-Entrepreneurship Workshop and 2019 BIO International Convention in Philadelphia. Lin and the others chosen for the workshop worked on teams with industry mentors to learn about biotechnology commercialization, grow their professional network, and explore entrepreneurial opportunities that build on basic research. The workshop featured training sessions and practice on the BIO 2019 exhibition floor.

    Lin’s participation in the workshop was based on her successful submission of an application package. Research-active undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and assistant professors from universities and colleges nationwide are eligible for the program.

    Read more here and here.

  78. Here are the winners in the Graduate Student Poster Competition

    The CFAES Annual Research Conference, held April 22 at Ohio State’s Columbus campus, included as part of its program a competition recognizing outstanding poster presentations by CFAES MS and PhD students, postdoctoral researchers, and research staff. We congratulate the winners in each of the categories.


    • First place: Gretchen Anchor, School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR) (Stan Gehrt, advisor)
    • Second place: Sarah Scott, Entomology (Mary Gardiner, advisor)
    • Third place: Matthew Willman, Horticulture and Crop Science (Jonathan Fresnedo Ramirez, advisor)


    • First place: Yiyun Lin, Horticulture and Crop Science (Michelle Jones, advisor)
    • Second place: Katie D’Amico, Horticulture and Crop Science (Jonathan Fresnedo Ramirez, advisor)
    • Third place: Yuehan Ai, Food Science and Technology (Jiyoung Lee, advisor)

    Postdoctoral researchers

    • First place: Juliana Vasco-Correa, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering
    • Second place: Hardy Castada, Food Science and Technology
    • Third place: Vishal Srivastava, Food Animal Health Research Program (FAHRP)

    Research staff

    • First place: Alyssa Zearley, SENR 
    • Second place: Christopher Okonkwo, Animal Sciences
    • Third place: Patricia Boley, FAHRP
  79. Annie Specht elected to University Senate

    Annie Specht, assistant professor in CFAES’ Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), has been elected to Ohio State’s University Senate. Specht “has shown her dedication toward improving our university,” ACEL Chair Tracy Kitchel said. She’ll be a valuable asset as a member of the senate in helping address university issues, he said.

    Specht joins seven other CFAES faculty among the senate’s membersEnrico Bonello, Department of Plant Pathology; Ken Lee, Department of Food Science and Technology; Brent Sohngen, Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics; and Mike Hogan, Greg LaBarge, Jeff McCutcheon, and Chris Penrose of OSU Extension.

    Read more.

  80. ‘ETHOS’ series talks to Rattan Lal

    A video released in February, the first in a new series called “ETHOS”—Ethics Throughout Ohio State—features CFAES soil scientist Rattan Lal. You can watch it below. The series will highlight the “ethical motivations and challenges that underlie much of the cutting-edge research being done at Ohio State,” according to the video’s YouTube description. The idea is to show “how scholars across many disciplines are helping to improve the life of our community.” Ohio State’s Center for Ethics and Human Values is the producer.

    Lal is Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources. He was recently announced as a winner of the Japan Prize, considered one of the most prestigious honors in science and technology, and will receive it in a ceremony on April 8 in Tokyo.

    Read more about the “ETHOS” series.

  81. ‘I love the aspect of food bringing people together’

    Believing that food can connect people, CFAES student Sara Steinbrunner wants to make sure no one is left out because of dietary restrictions or allergies. Steinbrunner, a senior in the Department of Food Science and Technology, has developed a garbanzo bean spread that is free of the eight most common allergens. Together with her business partner, she is producing, marketing, and selling the spread as a product they’re calling Beannut Butter.

    The new spread could mean “no more excluded lunch tables for nut-free students,” Steinbrunner said. “I love the aspect of food bringing people together.”

    Read the full story.

  82. Awards and recognitions

    John Foltz, chair of the Department of Animal Sciences, has been elected to the FarmHouse Fraternity International Executive Board (IEB), where he will serve a four-year term. As an undergraduate at Ohio State, Foltz was a member of Alpha Zeta Fraternity, now FarmHouse Fraternity.

    The CFAES Viticulture Program recently received one of the American Society for Horticultural Science’s 2018 Extension Material Awards. The award came in the Video category for “Grapevine Canopy Management,” which was prepared by former graduate student Thomas Todaro, now of Michigan State University, and advisor Imed Dami. Watch the video.

    Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in the School of Environment and Natural Resources and director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center, received an honorary doctorate degree from Gustavus Adolphus College during the 54th Nobel Conference on Oct. 2-3 in Minnesota. The college has recognized 92 winners of Nobel Prizes with honorary doctorates. Lal was a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that received the Peace Prize in 2007.

    Tracy Kitchel, chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), was recently selected as the North Central American Association for Agricultural Education Outstanding Agricultural Educator. The annual award recognizes an individual who has made outstanding contributions over the years to agricultural education.

    The Construction Systems Management (CSM) student team of John Hagan, Andrew Schmidt, John Trainor, Lexi Brotherton, Daniel Groudle and Donovan Kitchen recently took second place in the Associated Schools of Construction Heavy/Civil Competition. CSM program lecturer Don Schafer is the team’s advisor.

    Peggy Kirk Hall, associate professor and field specialist, OSU Extension, received the Distinguished Service Award from the American Agricultural Law Association on Oct. 26 during the association’s annual conference in Portland, Oregon. The award is given annually to an AALA member for contributions to the organization and to agricultural law.

    Hall also recently received the National Association of County Agriculture Agents’ 2018 Distinguished Service Award during the group’s annual conference in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The award is given to agents with more than 10 years of service in Cooperative Extension who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension education.

    Allen Auck, program manager of events and activities in the State 4-H office and a graduate of ACEL, was recently inducted into the Ohio State Fair Hall of Fame. For more than 30 years, Auck has worked tirelessly to ensure that 4-H youth have a positive experience at the Ohio State Fair. His efforts as the 4-H superintendent involve scheduling and coordinating all non-livestock activities.

    The Department of Food Science and Technology inducted John Litchfield, Carl Obenauf, William Spain, Ira Gould (posthumous) and Lester Stauffer (posthumous) into its Hall of Distinction on Oct. 5. Read their bios. The FST Hall of Distinction recognizes individuals for their contributions to food science and technology as well as their support of the department and Ohio State.

  83. 4-H Among Youth Programs Highlighted at Joint Committee Meeting

    The Agriculture Committees of the Ohio Senate and Ohio House of Representatives held a joint meeting on July 31 at the Ohio State Fair. The focus of this year’s joint committee hearing was youth and the various programs that prepare the youth of today for leadership tomorrow.

    Testimony was given by:

    • Virgil Strickler, general manager of the Ohio State Fair
    • Morgan McCutcheon, 2018 Ohio Fairs' queen
    • Kolesen McCoy, Ohio FFA president
    • Aryn Copeland, Junior Fair Board president/Collegiate Farm Bureau
    • Holly McClay, Ohio Farm Bureau fair ambassador
    • Sidney and Samantha McAllister, 4-H exhibitors
    • Kamala Sweeney, 4-H exhibitor
    • Lana Grover, 4-H exhibitor
    • Spencer Bauman, 2018 inductee Ohio Youth 4-H Hall of Fame
    • Zac Collins, All-Ohio State Fair Band
    • Nikiya Coburn, Girl Scouts
    • Brendan Kleman, Boy Scouts
    • Jason Shiltz, Grange

    Virgil Strickler, the general manager of the Ohio State Fair, kicked off the testimony sharing his enjoyment in seeing how the youth become leaders in the community and in Ohio counties.

    “That is what it is all about,” Strickler said. “We need leadership in agriculture for our future, and you are going to see those leaders here today.”

    Spencer Bauman, 2018 Ohio 4-H Teen Hall of Fame inductee from Adams County, provided testimony about his 13 years of experience in 4-H and all of the projects and programs available to youth. His testimony acknowledged the 200 projects available to youth ranging from science, technology, engineering, and math to nutrition, sewing, and leadership.

    “As a Cloverbud, I had about 20 different projects I wanted to take,” Bauman said. “My parents limited me to only five my first year.

    “I am now on my last year of 4-H, and I have learned about basically everything. I have now taken over 50 projects,” Bauman said.

    He also shared the other opportunities 4-H provides, including camping programs engaging 18,000 youth around the state, after-school programs engaging around 62,000 youth, and state and national conferences and trips.

    “4-H has allowed me to make meaningful connections and learn about myself as I impact the world through community service projects,” Bauman said. “There are so many opportunities that 4-H gives to you. I am so grateful for my time with the program.” -- Michelle Ball

  84. CFAES Faculty Earn Promotion and Tenure

    Congratulations image

    CFAES faculty granted tenure or promotion will join colleagues from across the university at the 16th annual Faculty Recognition Program on Tuesday, Oct. 30, from 3-4:30 p.m. at the Faculty Club. Remarks will begin at 3:30 p.m.

    AES faculty receiving tenure or promotion include:

    • James Bates, Ohio State University Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Alfredo Berardo, School of Environment and Natural Resources, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Peggy Hall, OSU Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Reed Johnson, Entomology, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Mark Light, OSU Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Daniel Linden, Ohio State ATI, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Stephen Matthews, SENR, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Brian Raison, OSU Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Daniel Remley, OSU Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Eric Romich, OSU Extension, promotion to associate professor with tenure
    • Jeremy Bruskotter, SENR, promotion to professor
    • Emily Buck, Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership, promotion to professor
    • Theresa Ferrari, OSU Extension, promotion to professor
    • David Gardner, Horticulture and Crop Science, promotion to professor
    • Greg LaBarge, OSU Extension, promotion to professor
    • Ed Lentz, OSU Extension, promotion to professor
    • Pasha Lyvers Peffer, Animal Sciences, promotion to professor
    • Chris Penrose, OSU Extension, promotion to professor
    • Julie Fox, OSU Extension, tenure at current rank of associate professor

    For more information about the Faculty Recognition Program, visit go.osu.edu/frp.

  85. Three New I-Corps Teams from CFAES

    Three of the teams selected for I-Corps@Ohio funding hail from CFAES.

    I-Corps@Ohio is a program for faculty and graduate students from Ohio universities and colleges. It provides funding and training to help move fundamental research into innovative products and services, using scalable business models that serve as the basis for startup companies.

    The CFAES teams, which will receive $15,000 in funding, include:

    Nanicula—Nanovaccine against Salmonella in poultry via drinking water delivery. The principle investigator is Aradhya Gourapura, DVM, professor in the Food Animal Health Research Program; the entrepreneurial lead is Sankar Renu, post-doctoral research scientist in Gourapura’s lab; and the mentor is Shauna R. Brummet, president and CEO, BioHio Research Park.
    Pseudo-NIM—Biological Control of Hydroponic Plant-root Bacterial Disease. The principle investigator is Chris Taylor, associate professor, Department of Plant Pathology; The entrepreneurial leads are Cecilia Freitas, PhD candidate; Emily Horst, undergraduate student; and Madeline Horvat, research associate in Taylor’s lab. The mentors are Brummet, Mike Bledsoe, vice president Food Safety & Regulatory Affairs; Bruce Caldwell, CEO 3-Bar Biologics, Inc.; Sally Miller, professor, Department of Plant Pathology; and Subbu Kumarappan, assistant professor, Ohio State ATI.
    Frost Shield—Natural Products for Prevention of Frost Damage in Vineyards. The principle investigator is Imed Dami, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science; The entrepreneurial lead is Hongrui Wang, MS candidate in Dami’s lab. The mentor is Brummet.

    Teams that receive I-Corps@Ohio funding are required to complete an intensive seven-week, hands-on training program. The curriculum is designed to help aspiring entrepreneurial teams understand the market for their technology, develop a compelling commercialization strategy, and attain new skills that will be useful to a long-term career in research and development.
    According to the I-Corps@Ohio website, program teams will:

    • learn key business modeling concepts and how they are relevant to start-up efforts, including problem-solution fit, customer/market segments, value propositions, channels, and revenue streams,
    • assess their core assumptions by developing and testing hypotheses about each critical aspect of the total commercial opportunity,
    • conduct numerous interviews (up to 100) with customers, end-users, purchasers and channel partners to develop a rich understanding about the customer market and the needs for the proposed products and services,
    • learn from executive mentors and program instructors with relevant industry, scientific, and startup expertise.

    Team outcomes will include a clear go/no go decision regarding market viability, a development and transition plan should the decision be to move the effort forward, and a technology demonstration for potential investors, collaborators, and industry partners.

    I-Corps@Ohio is a life-changing opportunity. Participating in an I-Corps team can open your eyes to a different way of looking at the world, and the role and importance of your work in the world," Brummet said.

    "It helps research scientists decide if they have an entrepreneurial interest that can be incorporated to a greater or lesser extent into their work. Scientists and students can see the value of the translational aspect of their work and incorporate translational activities early in their research efforts. Considering the end-user—the customer—will become a well-used tool in the toolbox of the top-performing research scientist,” she said.

    I-Corps@Ohio is modeled after the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) successful I-Corps program, which has proven to increase innovation, entrepreneurship, and industry collaboration. I-Corps@Ohio is an initiative of the Ohio Department of Higher Education. Founding institutions include University of Akron, University of Cincinnati, Lorain County Community College, Ohio University, The Ohio State University, and University of Toledo.

  86. Specht, Rumble Win National Communication Award

    Annie Specht

    Two Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL) faculty members earned top honors at the recent Association for Communication Excellence (ACE) conference in Scottsdale, Arizona.

    Annie Specht, assistant professor of agricultural communication, received the Award of Excellence in Teaching from ACE, an international association of communicators, educators, and information technologists. The organization offers professional development and networking for individuals who extend knowledge about agriculture, natural resources, and life and human sciences.

    Joy Rumble, new assistant professor of agricultural communication with Ohio State ATI at the Wooster Campus, has earned the Award of Excellence in Research from ACE.
    "Although Dr. Rumble does not officially begin with Ohio State until August 15 and technically received this award under the University of Florida banner, we get the honor of keeping Dr. Rumble and her skills that contributed to her winning that award," said ACEL Chair Tracy Kitchel in an email to faculty, staff, and students.

  87. Garbanzo Beans Lead to Two Product Development Wins for Senior

    Garbanzo beans helped make Sarah Steinbrunner a winner.

    The senior in the Department of Food Science and Technology won two food development awards recently, both based on the bean.

    Her Bean Nut Butter, developed with Taylor Crooks from Sandusky, won the Ohio Signature Food Contest put on by the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) and the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation. Bean Nut Butter is a non-GMO and vegan nut butter that is free of the top eight allergens. It uniquely incorporates garbanzo beans, which are high in protein and fiber, but lower in calorie and fat content associated with regular nuts.

    According to a CIFT press release, the contest showcases new, innovative products ready to take that next step into actual product development.

    Following a review of written applications and presentations by food entrepreneurs and chefs to a panel of judges, the highest scoring concepts were selected based on the viability of the product, commercialization potential, business strategy, and overall appeal to the marketplace.

    As a result of the award, technical assistance from CIFT will be provided to the startup businesses ranging from business planning, product/process development, shelf stability testing, labeling review, regulatory assistance, and batch product preparations for sampling. Later, production will take place at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen (NOCK) in Bowling Green, Ohio. The NOCK is a commercially-licensed kitchen that educates and provides technical assistance to new and growing food businesses.

    The FST product development team, which includes Steinbrunner, also placed first in the Institute of Food Technologists Student Association MARS competition with their product “Banzo Bites,” made of two wafers held together by a Nutella-like center. Team members also included CFAES students Amy Andes, Ayna Arora, Megan Hoehn, Jing-Wei Lee, Megan Lu, Anna Schmenk, and Tara Vorst.

    As finalists, the team received a $1,000 travel grant, and as first place winners, received $4,000.

  88. Two CFAES Entomologists Named Fellows of the Entomological Society of America

    Closeup of an insect face

    The Governing Board of the Entomological Society of America (ESA) has elected 10 new Fellows of the Society for 2018, including Bruce McPheron, The Ohio State University provost, and Dan Herms, formerly with CFAES and now with The Davey Tree Expert Company. Election as a Fellow of ESA acknowledges outstanding contributions to entomology in research, teaching, extension and outreach, administration, or the military. See more details on criteria for Fellow selection, as well as a full list of ESA Fellows.

    Fellows McPheron and Herms will be recognized during Entomology 2018, the Joint Annual Meeting of the Entomological Societies of America, Canada, and British Columbia, November 11-14, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

    According to the ESA website:

    Bruce A. McPheron, professor of entomology and executive vice president and provost of Ohio State is internationally known for the development of molecular diagnostic tools to understand and manage the spread of invasive fruit fly species and work on the process of speciation, using native fruit fly species as model systems.

    Even in his early childhood in Ohio, insects—and their role in the ecosystem—intrigued him. Later, he earned a bachelor's degree with honors in entomology from Ohio State and a master's degree in biology and a doctorate in entomology from the University of Illinois. His academic career at land-grant institutions began as an Ohio State University Extension educator, followed by a position as a postdoctoral researcher at Louisiana State University. In 1988, he joined the faculty at Pennsylvania State University's College of Agricultural Sciences and later served as associate dean and director of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Experiment Station and as the college's dean. He returned to Ohio State in 2012 as vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. In 2015, he served as interim executive vice president and provost during a national search and, in 2016, was appointed to the permanent position. In this role, he oversees 15 colleges, five campuses, and more than 7,000 tenure-, clinical-, research-track and associated faculty. In addition, he has oversight of academic programs for 66,046 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students; more than 200 majors; and almost 13,000 courses.

    He has conducted extensive fieldwork in Africa, Australia, and Latin America, focusing on the spread of invasive fruit fly species, in addition to international agriculture and agricultural biosecurity. His research is published in 60 refereed journals, two edited books, 16 articles in books, 22 non-refereed publications, and 68 domestic and international invited presentations. In addition, he has taught at all levels and provided research supervision of five MS degrees, 10 PhD degrees, and seven postdoctoral scholars; sponsored 17 undergraduate research projects; and hosted eight graduate students for significant components of their thesis research.

    A longtime national leader in higher education administration, he has focused on the vital contributions of land-grant institutions to society. He served in national leadership within the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU), chairing the agricultural research leadership organization, then the dean and administrative heads of agriculture and, finally, the Policy Board of Directors of the Board on Agriculture Assembly. As provost, he is active in the Big Ten Academic Alliance, the Association of American Universities, and APLU in advancing the land-grant mission in higher education.

    He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has testified on the Farm Bill before the U.S. House of Representatives. In addition, as a food-security advocate, he serves on Feeding America's board of directors.

    Daniel A. Herms, vice president for research and development at The Davey Tree Expert Company, is internationally known for research on theory and ecology of plant defense and its application to management of insect pests of trees and shrubs.

    Herms was born in Columbus, Ohio, in 1959 and raised in Portsmouth, Ohio, where he worked for the Herms Floral Company and Greenhouses. He received his Bachelor of Science in landscape horticulture from The Ohio State University, where his interest in entomology was sparked by the animated teaching of Dave Horn. He earned a Master of Science in 1984 from Ohio State with dual majors in entomology and horticulture, conducting his research in the lab of Dave Nielsen. From 1984 to 1996, Herms worked at Dow Gardens, a public display garden in Midland, Michigan, directing the IPM and research programs. While working at Dow Gardens, he received his PhD in 1991 from Michigan State University (MSU) in entomology and the ecology and evolutionary biology graduate program, where he was mentored by Bill Mattson and appointed as an adjunct faculty member in 1992. Herms joined the Department of Entomology at Ohio State in Wooster in 1997 and was promoted to full professor in 2008. In 2018, he was hired by The Davey Tree Expert Company, the world's largest full-service tree care firm, as vice president of research and development.

    Herms has published 256 papers, including 96 articles in peer-reviewed journals, 31 book and proceeding chapters, and 129 outreach and Extension publications and has garnered more than $10 million to support his work. He has been major advisor to 18 graduate students, served on the advisory committee of 39 graduate students, and supervised nine post-docs. His research with students and collaborators explores the ecophysiology of tree defense, including chemical ecology and response to abiotic factors as well as ecological impacts of invasive forest insects. His applied research and Extension programs address IPM in urban forests, ornamental landscapes, and nurseries.

    Herms has presented or coauthored 167 invited and 317 contributed research presentations and 448 Extension talks. He taught or co-taught The Nature and Practice of Science and Insect Ecology and Evolution at MSU and Ohio State, Forest and Shade Tree Entomology at Ohio State, and served the CFAES Department of Entomology as graduate studies chair (2004-2006), associate chair (2006-2011), interim chair (2012), and chair (2013-2016). He has served as subject editor for Environmental Entomology, associate editor for Arboriculture and Urban Forestry, coordinator of the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) working group on tree resistance to insects, and on USDA APHIS science advisory panels for emerald ash borer and Asian longhorned beetle. Major recognitions include the Richard W. Harris Authorship Award from the International Society of Arboriculture (2013), the ESA Distinguished Achievement Award in Horticultural Entomology (2014), and election as Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2014).


  89. Lal Receives Medal of Honour

    Rattan Lal receiving a Medal of Honour.

    Rattan Lal received a Medal of Honour from the Universidad Internacional Menendez Pelayo in Santander, Spain, on July 24.

    The medal "is for your outstanding academic merit, which comprises a long trajectory of defense of the environment and, more specifically, for the study of soil as a living body and a key element in terms of global change," Emilio Lora-Tamayo D'Ocon, rector at UIMP, wrote in a letter to Lal.

    A Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science, Lal also serves as director of the CFAES Carbon Management and Sequestration Center. “I strongly believe that health of soil, plants, animals, people, and ecosystems are one and indivisible,” he said in a recent interview. For more, see: cfaes.osu.edu/stories/rattan-lal-our-soils-rock-star.


  90. Ohio Sea Grant Announces 2019 Knauss Fellowship Finalists

    Three of the five Ohio finalists selected to be a part of the 40th class of the John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship are from CFAES.

    The Knauss Fellowship is year-long program that places highly qualified graduate students in host offices in the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government. The group represents the largest number of Ohio finalists selected in one year since the program began in 1979.

    “We are proud to send such an accomplished group of Ohio finalists into placement week for their Knauss Fellowships later this year,” said Christopher Winslow, director of Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Laboratory at The Ohio State University, in a press release. “Each of them brings a unique combination of science expertise and passion for policy work to the table, and we believe they will be outstanding assets to the federal government programs they decide to join.”

    Anna Apostel is a PhD candidate in agricultural engineering where she focuses on developing computer models that help researchers and agencies study and manage watersheds like the Maumee River. She is currently acting as the liaison between the research team and the stakeholders informing the work, and that experience has encouraged her to look at issues from a number of angles.

    “I seek to obtain a position in the environmental policy sector where I will be able to focus on the use of sound science for water policy and citizen outreach,” Apostel wrote in her application. “The Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship provides the ideal opportunity to take the next step towards achieving these career goals. I am excited about the opportunities to work with policymakers and learn more about the processes involved in marine policy development.”

    Elizabeth Berg is pursuing a master’s degree in the School of Environment and Natural Resources. In addition to mentoring undergraduate students in laboratory research, she is involved with a number of university governing bodies to develop her skills in governance and networking.

    “As a Knauss Fellow and in my future career, I hope to continue working with freshwater resources in the Great Lakes,” Berg said in her application. “Ultimately, I aim to be a representative of the scientific community in the interface of science-policy decisions.”

    Amara Huddleston is a master’s student at Ohio State’s Aquatic Ecology Laboratory. Her research focuses on walleye, an important sport fish in the Great Lakes, and how severe winters affect larval walleye prey. Her true passion, though, lies in communicating science to the public and helping ensure that science-based information guides policy decisions.

    “Science policy is the intersection between my passions: research, communication, and outreach,” Huddleston wrote in her fellowship application. “The Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship will set me on a trajectory toward expertise in scientific education and outreach. Most importantly, I hope to learn how research, policy, communication, and education intersect to help protect the economic vitality and resources of coastal and Great Lakes communities.”

    They join a group of 69 finalists recommended to the National Sea Grant office from 30 Sea Grant programs across the country. Finalists will meet in Washington, D.C., in November 2018 for placement interviews with potential host offices, which can include executive branch appointments in offices like NOAA, the Department of the Interior and the National Science Foundation, as well as legislative placements on Senate and House committees and in legislative offices.


  91. Chadwick Fall Native Tree Sale Set for Sept. 14-15

    Daniel Struve tends to one of the many trees he is growing

    Chadwick Arboretum & Learning Gardens is hosting a Fall Native Tree Sale, some of them grown by Daniel Struve, professor emeritus in horticulture and crop sciences.

    The sale is Sept. 14, 3 to 7 p.m., and Sept. 15, 9 a.m. to noon at the Arboretum North site behind the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center.

    A variety of native trees from locally sourced seed will be featured in 3-gallon containers, 4' to 5' tall. Most will sell for between $35 and $45. Species include, but are not limited to, various varieties of Aesculus, Asimina, Carpinus, Carya, Castanea, Cercis, Diospyros, Frankliniana, Gymnocladus, Lindera, Magnolia, Nyssa, Prunus, Quercus, Stewartia, and Viburnum.

    In 2014, Struve was interviewed by WOSU radio about his efforts to collect seeds and grow trees. By his own estimate, he has planted some 50,000 trees. Here is the text from that interview:

    Struve may have retired from teaching horticulture but by no means has he given up his horticultural practice. He’s still working to grow genetically superior trees from seeds. “I’ve always had an interest in trees, especially these monarchs of the forest…the old ones. And although in our lifetime they might appear to live forever there’s a finite life span,” Struve says.
    So Struve has been collecting the seeds of some of the most impressive specimens of the forest or wherever he can find them, along the roadside, even on The Ohio State University campus.
    “Basically the genetic constitution of those plants is being preserved in other places, assuming that I can germinate the seed, grow a seedling, and then that seedling or tree gets planted somewhere in the landscape and goes on to a long and prosperous life,” Struve says.
    Struve’s trees can be found at several locations on the Ohio State Columbus campus. He planted rows of oaks by the married student apartments near Ackerman and Fred Taylor Drive. He put in more trees by the 4-H building behind the Schottenstein Center. And there’s an avenue of oaks along the drive just off Kenny at Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory.
    “Right at the entrance are some red oaks and these all came from the seed collected from the same mother tree, so they’re all brothers and sisters along this drive here. There’s probably about a dozen of them and so now we have an alley of red oak,” Struve says.
    The seeds for the Waterman oaks came from a tree near Plumb Hall on campus. But Struve makes forays into the countryside to find superior trees to harvest their seeds. Last fall he went to Licking County armed with plastic storage bags, a felt-tip pen, and permission, of course. His mission: to gather seeds from beech, oak, and pawpaw trees. He found a bountiful crop on a beautiful beech.
    “This year, this particular tree has produced a lot of seed. Beech does not produce a lot of seeds often. And the fact that this one is really producing a lot is really unique,” Struve says.
    As Struve talks, he quickly picks beech nut seeds from the reachable branches. He seems to do so by instinct. He’s been gathering seeds so long, he says.
    “Now the other problem with seed collection is it’s addictive and you don’t know when to stop. So how many is enough? You always want more, is the word,” Struve says.
    It makes sense to gather more than you need. Some seeds won’t germinate, some seed casings are empty. Some seed’s coatings are so difficult to break through that they require acid, filing, or the application of boiling water to stir them to life.
    Struve knows all the tricks of the trade to start the germination process. In fact, he’s developed his own methods of bringing a seed to tree…something he calls the Ohio Production System. Even so, he says, there are no guarantees of success.
    “It’s a game of chance and there’s a lot of steps in it and a mistake at any one point in this process … well, you failed,” Struve says.
    Just a few days ago, Dan Struve was sowing seeds in a special blend of potting soil in a greenhouse near Delaware.
    “Now I’m taking out the individual seedlings and we’re just putting them in the soil, and then after we’re done sowing, it’s just hurry up and wait,” Struve says.
    The whole process from collection to germination to potential tree takes a year’s time. Struve works with a sense of urgency, because he figures, a horticulturalist has a limited number of years to accomplish his work.
    “As a propagator, your professional life starts maybe when you’re 20 and you’re done when you’re 65. So you have 45 years, so basically that’s 45 chances to get it right. So, basically, you don’t want to waste any of those chances. It never gets old,” Struve says. -- Source: WOSU

  92. Dean Announces Leadership Reappointments

    Dean Kress

    In July, Vice President and Dean Cathann A. Kress announced three reappointments to the CFAES leadership team. They are Sheryl Barringer as chair of the Department of Food Science and Technology, Jim Metzger as chair of the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, and Jeff Sharp as director of the School of Environment and Natural Resources.

    Sheryl BarringerSheryl Barringer

    Barringer, reappointed for a four-year term through May 30, 2022, joined Ohio State in 1994, became interim chair in 2013, and permanent chair in 2015. She holds a BS with Highest Honors in food science from the University of Illinois and a Ph.D. in food science and nutrition from the University of Minnesota, where she was a USDA National Needs Fellow.

    In addition to being department chair, Barringer teaches courses in fruit and vegetable processing, technical problem solving, and chocolate science, and was the 2001 and 2005 recipient of the CFAES Outstanding Teaching Award. She is the Associate Editor for the Foods & Food Ingredients Journal of Japan and a member of numerous professional organizations. Her research is in flavor volatiles, coatings, snack foods, and fruit and vegetable processing. In 1997, she received the OARDC Outstanding Research Award, in 2004, the Institute of Food Technologists Samuel Cate Prescott Award, and in 2015 became a Fellow of the Institute of Food Technologists.

    “This is a key time for the department, and I have asked Dr. Barringer to focus on the strategic priorities for the future success of the department,” Kress said. “I appreciate having Dr. Barringer’s expertise and her practical and dedicated approach on our leadership team.”

    Jim Metzger

    Metzger, reappointed for a three-year term through May 30, 2021, joined Ohio State in 1994, became interim chair in 2012, and permanent chair in 2014. He holds a BA in biology from Jim MetzgerMillersville University of Pennsylvania and his Ph.D. in botany from Michigan State University.

    Metzger’s research area is crop physiology with a program objective to develop new methods that reduce production costs of crops by applying fundamental knowledge of critical plant processes. Metzger has been an author or co-author of nearly 120 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters and continues to make significant contributions to the department’s undergraduate and graduate teaching and advising programs. He was the recipient of the ASHS Cross Commodity Publication Award in 2001, the Plimpton Teaching Award in 2002, the Outstanding Faculty Award, Students of the Departments of Horticulture and Crop Science and Plant Pathology in 2011, and the CFAES Outstanding Academic Mentoring Award in 2016.

    “I have asked Dr. Metzger to focus around some key priorities and develop strategies for moving the department forward. I have also asked for his attention to facilitating communication and collegiality between the Columbus and Wooster campuses to ensure the future success of the department,” Kress said. “I appreciate having Dr. Metzger’s expertise and his dedication to projects, like the future of Waterman, on our leadership team.”

    Jeff Sharp

    Sharp, reappointed for a four-year term through May 30, 2022, joined Ohio State in 1998, became interim director in 2013, and permanent director in 2014. He hasJeff Sharp a B.S. in political science, an M.S. in rural sociology, and a Ph.D. in sociology from Iowa State University.

    Sharp’s research focuses on community and agricultural change, with particular attention focused on changes occurring at the rural-urban interface and local food system development. He has over 70 research articles, chapters and extension bulletins and has been the lead investigator on over $750,000 in federal competitive grants. He has taught both undergrad and graduate courses, and his outreach activities have focused on generating practical data and conducting programs that increase understanding of social constraints and opportunities associated with agriculture and the environment, primarily at the community level.

    “Dr. Sharp is a strategic leader and dedicated to developing a collaborative and supportive culture within the school and the college. We believe Dr. Sharp demonstrates the leadership to continue to move the school toward increasing eminence,” Kress said. “I appreciate having Dr. Sharp’s expertise and continual pursuit of excellence on our leadership team.” -- Michelle Ball

  93. Chadwick's Annual Open House Includes Canoeing, Fishing

    Wheelbarrow with flowers planted inside

    Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens is hosting an open house July 22, 1-4 p.m.
    Bring your family and friends to the Arboretum North site for a day of fun in nature, education, canoeing, fishing, and free refreshments.
    This event includes:

    • 20 different nature stations
    • free guides and education about native bees
    • free pollinator plants
    • free Johnson’s Ice Cream for the first 300 guests
    • tours of the Monarch Way Station, Arb North Site, EnCORE Solar House, and more
    • Franklin County Ask A Master Gardener booth to answer all of your gardening questions
    • Franklin Soil and Water
    • Rain Brothers
    • Higher Ground Greenroof LLC
    • Knowlton School of Architecture
    • George Keeney Bug Collection
    • Denise Ellsworth, bee education, and bee card giveaways
    • Alisha Loar ceramics
    • Karen English Photography
    • canoeing, with education and instruction regarding the research lake, catch and release fishing, and lead-free fishing tackle (life vests provided)
    • rain garden education from CFAES students and Chadwick staff
    • gardening tools for sale and tree pruning demo

    The Arboretum North site is located northwest of the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center. Parking is available across Fred Taylor Drive in Gray Lot #3.

  94. ATI Students Blossom at National Competition

    ATI Floral Design and Marketing Students

    Ohio State ATI Floral Design and Marketing students were successful on many levels at the American Institute of Floral Designers National Symposium and student floral design competition last week in Washington, D.C. The six-member team placed second in the sympathy design category (missing first place by .03 points) and placed third in interpretive design. Team members were Maddy Bailey, Brittany Hushour, Alexsis Longden, Jessica Millenbaugh, Megan Workman and Beth Zsoldos.

    Alexsis Longden won first place and a check for $300 for her vegetative sympathy design.
    Other top ten certificate winners were:
        • Brittany Hushour - 4th place sympathy design and 5th place interpretive design
        • Beth Zsoldos - 8th place fashion flower design
        • Jessica Millenbaugh - 7th place interpretive design, 10th place wedding design and 9th place overall ranking

    This competition brings together hundreds of student designers from across the United States. Students compete in four floral categories, which vary from year to year. Designers must work within strict time and size constraints and do not know what floral materials or containers they will encounter when they walk into the competition space. -- Frances Whited

  95. FABE Post-Doc Receives Schlumberger Fellowship

    Juliana Vasco-Correa

    Juliana Vasco-Correa, post-doctoral scholar in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, was recently named a 2018 recipient of a Faculty for the Future fellowship from the Schlumberger Foundation. 

    Since its launch in 2004, nearly 700 women from over 80 countries have received Faculty for the Future fellowships. The goal of these awards is to increase the number of women pursuing scientific careers and post-doctoral studies in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Of the 555 applications for the 2018-2019 academic year, Vasco-Correa was among the 50 new awards recipients selected

    “The Faculty of the Future fellowship is for me a validation of my career goals, as well as my accomplishments,” said Vasco-Correa. “The Schlumberger Foundation gives a significant weight to my outreach activities, especially those that involved educational activities with children, which are really important to me. This fellowship will allow me to work on research projects that will help to develop the circular bioeconomy and generate products and processes with higher benefits for consumers and the environment.”

    Vasco-Correa was born and raised in Medellin, Colombia, where she was interested in STEM subjects, especially biology and mathematics, from a young age. She received her B.S. in Biological Engineering and M.S. in Food, Science and Technology from the National University of Columbia, Medellin. In 2012, she received a Fulbright Fellowship, which allowed her to continue her studies at The Ohio State University in pursuit of her Ph.D. in Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, which she received in 2017. 

    Her postdoctoral research relates to anaerobic digestion, a technology where bacteria are used to transform organic matter into renewable energy. She aims to develop an innovative technology to convert anaerobic digestate - the contaminant byproduct of the process - into high value products with applications in bioenergy, agriculture, and wastewater treatment. One day, she hopes that her technology will solve one of the major drawbacks of anaerobic digestion while also increasing its cost-effectiveness. Vasco-Correa conducts her research with her advisor, Ajay Shah as a part of the Biobased Systems Analysis Lab (BSAL)

  96. Elayne Siegfried Named to HR Council

    Elayne Siegfried

    Elayne Sigfried, CFAES director of human resources (HR), is among nine HR professionals who have been named to serve on the university's HR Council through 2021.

    HR Council is an advisory group to HR leadership for the university’s HR community. HR Council provides cross-organizational input on key decisions, initiatives and policies, and advocates on behalf of the campus HR community on strategy, programs, services, and operations.

    Council members were carefully selected based on their applications, and each will serve a three-year term. Other council members are listed on the Office of Human Resources website.

  97. ATI student to speak out for pork industry

    pig on fence

    Abbie Greer, Ohio State ATI student, is among 12 college students selected by the Pork Checkoff to represent the #RealPigFarming Student Social Forces team this year. Candidates, from across the United States, were selected based on their involvement in the pork industry and their strong communication skills. The team will be active July through December.

    “Social media is ingrained in young people’s lives,” said Claire Masker, communications director for the Pork Checkoff. “It’s an easy tool for them to use in sharing their insights and inspiration about an industry that they are so proud to be a part of. With so many diverse social media channels available to them, they each have an opportunity to share their passion for pig farming with their followers.”

    “Consumers continue to have questions about how pigs are raised, and pig farmers know the answers better than anyone else,” she said. “The Pork Checkoff’s social media outreach program helps real farmers share their real stories with consumers through #RealPigFarming.”

    The hashtag before RealPigFarming helps people search social media posts with the same phrase, making it easier for them to follow conversations.

    “The social forces team will be encouraged to use #RealPigFarming as advocates for the pork industry,” Masker says. “While serving on this team, the students will be able to improve their communications skills and expand their professional network within the industry.”


  98. Ohio State’s AgriNaturalist named top student-produced magazine

    Copy of AgriNaturalist

    The 2017 AgriNaturalist was named the top magazine produced by students by the National Agricultural Alumni and Development Association (NAADA) at the 2018 national conference.

    The AgriNaturalist is an annual magazine produced by students in the agricultural communication major as a capstone project. It is also the longest running agricultural student publication in the United States, with the 2017 issue being the 123rd edition.

    “Our students pour such effort to create the AgriNaturalist each year,” said Tracy Kitchel, professor and chair of ACEL. “This recognition from the NAADA organization confirms that our agricultural communication major prepares its students with skills to be successful in their future careers of writing, designing, and sales and the critical thinking skills required to put those pieces together toward the outcome of a product like a full-fledged magazine.”

    Each spring semester, this magazine is completely produced by students – from advertisement sales, photography, graphic design, writing, and editing. It covers topics in the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), CFAES, The Ohio State University, and the agriculture industry.

    "I was honored to serve as the editor of the AgriNaturalist and count it as one of the highlights of my collegiate career,” said Megan Besanson, editor of the 2017 AgriNaturalist and current Marketing Specialist for Certified Angus Beef LLC. “This project was a culmination of everything we'd learned in our coursework and it gave our entire team an inside look at how to run a business and produce an outstanding magazine. This edition holds a special place in my portfolio.”

    The NAADA organization is a professional organization that provides education, support, and recognition for professionals and volunteers dedicated to expanding resources for advancing agriculture and related disciplines through land-grant and other colleges of agricultural sciences and partner programs.

    As part of its conference each year, NAADA hosts the annual Publication and Project Competition for member schools to submit print, multimedia, campaign, events, and society programming for consideration. The print media category is evaluated based on concept, writing, design, photos and graphics, print quality, and budget.

    Students, now Ohio State alumni, who served on the staff of the 2017 AgriNaturalist include:

    Megan Besancon, editor
    Mary Siekman, associate editor
    Miranda Miser, sales manager
    Elizabeth Overholt, associate sales manager
    Lauren Corry, design editor
    Shelby Bradford, associate design editor
    Emily Henes, design staff
    Mallorie Wippel, web editor
    Hope Bondurant, writer
    Mindi Brookhart, writer
    Amanda Bush, writer
    Tyler Crowe, writer
    James Fairchild, writer
    Sarah Johnson, writer
    Chloe Moreland, writer
    Taylor Pugh, writer
    Rachel Romonosky, writer
    Leah Schwinn, writer
    Jarred Shellhouse, writer
    Katherine Shoup, writer
    Seth Zavodny, writer
    Emily Buck, faculty advisor
    Annie Specht, advisor
    Desiree Seeloff, graduate advisor

    View the 2017 AgriNaturalist online or request a hard copy by emailing acel@osu.edu. -- Emily Wickham

  99. Faculty and Staff Attend 2018 DC Days

    Photo of visitors to D.C.

    Each year the CFAES Office for Research and Graduate Education and the Grant Development Support Unit (GDSU) invite newer faculty members to travel to Washington, D.C., which allows faculty to visit federal agencies and program officers, while providing an opportunity to network and increase collaboration across departments.

    The 5th annual DC Days program took place May 7-9, 2018, allowing eight faculty members and three administrative staff from CFAES to travel to the hill. Attendees included Rafiq Islam, V.M. "Bala" Balasubramaniam, Eric England, Kerry Ard, Anne Dorrance, Adam Ward, Lori Kaser, Melanie Lewis Ivey, Drew Hanks, Elizabeth Long, and Pam Schlegel.

    This year CFAES made a joint trip with the College of Education and Human Ecology (EHE), adding 12 EHE faculty and two staff members.

    On day one, CFAES attendees hopped on the metro and headed to USDA to learn about the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

    In 2017, the number one federal sponsor awarding CFAES funds was the USDA, providing almost $9 million in capacity funds and competitive awards. Our state liaison, Ann Lichens­ Park, gave an introduction followed by updates from program officers about the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Programs and the NIFA Center for International Programs. In the afternoon, CFAES attendees joined EHE attendees at the National Science Foundation (NSF).

    On day two, all attendees headed to Ohio State's Office of Government Affairs on Capitol Hill to learn more about how university federal liaisons facilitate the development, implementation, and advocacy of the university's federal agenda. The afternoon was spent at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), where faculty learned about the grants and peer review process, as well as how to find the right funding opportunities.

    The Environmental Protection Agency was the final stop on day three, where program officers discussed the National Center for Environmental Research (NCER) and related funding opportunities in depth.

    While in Washington, most faculty arranged time to visit individually with program officers to discuss their research and possible funding opportunities. Faculty organized one-on-one meetings with USDA-NIFA and NSF program officers, in addition to two agencies that were not a part of the itinerary, including the Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) Global and the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR).

    Those interested in joining the next group can check the GDSU website in the fall for the 2019 Request for Applications. -- Kayla Arnold


  100. Four FCS Extension Educators honored for career accomplishments

    Shannon CarterBarb HennardShannon Carter, Marie Economos, Barbara Hennard, and Dan Remley, all with Ohio State University Extension Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS), won national awards for their contributions to improving lives in Ohio.

    They received their awards at the most recent conference of the National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.

    “The association’s Distinguished Service Award and the Continued Excellence Award are two of the most prestigious presented,” said Lora Lee Howard, president of the organization. Carter and Hennard received the Continued Excellence Award and Economos and Remley received the Distinguished Service award.

    Marie EconomosDan Remley"Members who have attained these pinnacles in their career exemplify best practices in educational programming and professionalism. They are serving and meeting educational needs of their clients each day with unbiased, research-based information.”

    “I am especially pleased that Shannon, Marie, Dan, and Barb received this national recognition,” said Pat Bebo, assistant dean for Outreach and Engagement in the College of Education and Human Ecology and OSU Extension assistant director for Family and Consumer Sciences. “As we continue our Excellence to Eminence, these individuals exemplify characteristics of great leadership while serving thousands of Ohioans.”

  101. Opiyo receives Carnegie African Diaspora Fellow


    Stephen Opiyo, with the Molecular Cellular and Imaging Center on the Wooster campus, has been selected for the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program. He will be spending November at The University of Sacred Heart in Gulu, Uganda.Stephen Opiyo

    While there, he will:

    • work with faculty in the Department of Information Technology (IT) to develop a curriculum of research methods and data analytics for undergraduate students
    • offer a one weekend training in Introduction to R and RStudio to IT students. RStudio is a free and open-source integrated development environment for R, a programming language for statistical computing and graphics
    • introduce data analysis using advanced Excel to IT students

    The Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program, now in its fifth year, has selected 43 African Universities in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda to host 55 African-born scholars to build partnerships between home and host universities and address priority needs at host universities and countries. The program is funded by Carnegie Corporation of New York and managed by the Institute of International Education (IIE) in collaboration with United States International University-Africa (USIU-Africa) in Nairobi, Kenya, which coordinates the activities of the Advisory Council.

    The visiting Fellows will work with their hosts on a wide range of projects that include controlling malaria, strengthening peace and conflict studies, developing a new master’s degree in emergency medicine, training and mentoring graduate students in criminal justice, archiving African indigenous knowledge, creating low cost water treatment technologies, building capacity in microbiology and pathogen genomics, and developing a forensic accounting curriculum.

  102. Connect with Ohio State’s Global One Health initiative

    Spelling O-H-I-O with arms

    Stay up to date and receive the latest news about Ohio State’s Global One Health initiative (GOHi), a coordinated multi-disciplinary approach to improve health, build capacity, and provide learning opportunities for students and professionals across the globe.
    GOHi connects Ohio State to Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, China, India, and beyond to build capacity within cross-cutting issues including zoonotic diseases (such as Rabies, Anthrax and Brucellosis), antimicrobial resistance, cancer, maternal and child health, medicinal plants, food safety, and curriculum twinning.
    Faculty from all seven of Ohio State’s health sciences colleges as well as the colleges of agriculture, arts and sciences, business, education and human ecology, engineering, and social work are working locally, nationally and globally to address the spread of disease, promote health and emphasize the connection among humans, animals, and the environment.
    Learn more by subscribing to the Global One Health initiative’s monthly online newsletter.

  103. Bobby Moser receives Ohio State's Distinguished Service Award

    Bobby Moser, who served as CFAES dean and vice president of agricultural administration for more than 20 years, was honored with the university's Distinguished Service Award at Spring commencement.

    "Dr. Moser represented our university with unparalleled distinction in communities throughout Ohio, across the nation and around the world," said President Michael V. Drake. "It is a privilege to honor his extraordinary commitment to the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences – and to recognize his contributions to some of the most pressing food security and sustainability challenges of our time."

    The Distinguished Service Award was established by the Board of Trustees in 1952 to recognize individuals who have rendered exceptional service to the university. President Bevis recommended that the university present an award of similar magnitude tUniversity's Distinguished Service Awardo an honorary degree, to recognize people who have provided exceptional service to Ohio State. From the beginning, the receipt of this award was intended to be a matter of real distinction, with a limited number of recipients recognized at Commencement.

    Awards are not made on the basis of long, faithful, or loyal service alone, but rather for service that is truly distinguished. Recipients of this award have provided a broad spectrum of services to the university in both official and unofficial capacities.

    The university community is invited to nominate individuals for the award. The distinguished service award may be rendered on or off campus, by people who are officially connected or not so connected to the university. A committee reviews and discusses the nominations. Current committee members represent a range of perspectives - alumni, past DSA recipients, faculty, administrators, and distinguished staff - as well as a range of administrative areas across the university including the medical center.


  104. University funds opioid research

    Ohio State awarded eight research projects $491,000 from its Opioid Innovation Fund to tackle different aspects of the opioid-addiction crisis.

    The CFAES Center for Human-Animal Interaction Research and Education was among the eight winning proposals. The proposed study is a feasibility project to examine Reducing Trauma in Opioid-Affected Families using Human-Animal Interaction Techniques. The project pulls together expertise from four colleges, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, College of Social Work, and the College of Nursing, as well as an external partner, Athens County Children Services.

    For more information: OhStateOpioidfunding and http://www.dispatch.com/news/20180322/eight-ohio-state-projects-get-nearly-500k-for-opioid-related-research.


  105. Project earns Emerging International Engagement Award

    Children and urban garden

    "Our Common Home: A Youth-Based Approach to Food Security" has earned the Emerging International Engagement Award.

    The award was established by Ohio State's Office of International Affairs and the Office of Outreach and Engagement to recognize faculty and staff who have engaged in exceptional international outreach and community service projects.
    Recipients of the Emerging International Engagement Award have demonstrated outstanding promise in international outreach and engagement with the development of a relatively new initiative that has shown short-term results and has the potential for long-term impact, achievement, and scholarship.
    The award-winning program came to fruition out of common challenges facing the sister cities of Columbus, Ohio, and Accra, Ghana. These issues included food insecurity, climate change, and youth disengagement. The vision was to connect the two communities through urban gardens cultivated by youth, along with cross-cultural exchanges, to mutually improve urban food security, promote climate resilient systems and positively develop youth.
    An interdisciplinary team of faculty, staff, and students from Ohio State started this project by using a community development model to identify pre-existing capital across social, cultural, and natural dimensions that informed which community partners to engage and where to locate the gardens.
    Two barren plots of land at YMCA facilities in Columbus and Accra have been revitalized into urban gardens. Intentionally structured youth activities were designed using 4-H's Positive Youth Development model to nurture life and livelihood skills in youths through trained, caring adult mentors. Youths engaged in the project were also guided by pre-existing youth gardening curriculum to teach climate-resilient gardening techniques appropriate for each geography.
    Approximately 50 youths have been engaged at both sites so far, experientially learning new skills. The Sister City relationship enhanced the impact of this project by also enabling an exchange visit in order to build cultural awareness and competency towards addressing the issues of climate change and food security. Three young girls and two adult men, representing 4-H Ghana and Greater Accra YMCA, visited Columbus and surrounding areas August 2017.
    Community Partners Involved: YMCA of Central Ohio and North YMCA, Ghana YMCA and Greater Accra YMCA, 4-H Ghana, Greater Columbus Sister Cities International.
    Ohio State Partners Involved: 4-H Youth Development; Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership; Mershon Center for International Security Studies; Center for African Studies; School of Environment and Natural Resources; Franklin County Extension; Initiative for Food and AgriCultural Transformation (InFACT); Collegiate 4-H.
  106. eFields project wins Ohio State's Emerging Community Engagement Award

    The CFAES "eFields: Connecting Science to Fields" project has been selected to receive the 2018 Emerging Community Engagement award from The Ohio State University.  The awards are presented by the Office of Outreach and Engagement, the Office of International Affairs, the Office of Service-Learning, the Office of Undergraduate Education, and the Office of Student Life.

    Awardees will be recognized at a ceremony on May 2 at 10:30 a.m. in the Ohio Union, U.S. Bank Conference Theater. The event is free and open to the public. RSVP requested at http://go.osu.edu/awardsceremony. Anyone interested can attend the ceremony.

    eFields is a research initiative focused on testing and refining management practices with the goal of increasing farm efficiency and profit while minimizing the environmental impacts of the agriculture industry. eFields consists of field-scale research projects that are planned, designed, and executed in partnership with Ohio farmers. Ohio State researchers and OSU Extension professionals work with partnering farmers to design field experiments that allow them to compare different approaches to solving a problem and choose the solution that offers the best result for their operation.

    This approach ensures that the research is aimed at answering questions that matter to farmers and the results are relevant to the challenges farmers face in their operations. In its inaugural year, over 50 studies conducted at 39 unique research sites, across 13 counties and more than 3,000 acres were included in the final report. Our collaborators included more than 30 farmers, 21 industry partners, and more than 15 Ohio State faculty and staff.

    Community Partners Involved: Ohio farmers, Industry partners (Case IH, Salford, New Holland Agriculture, Orthman, Beck's, Pioneer, Camso, Precision Planting, Soucy Track, Farmobile, Unverferth).

    Ohio State Partners Involved: College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering, OSU Extension.

  107. Battelle Endowment funds CFAES projects

    Of the six projects recently funded by the Battelle Engineering, Technology and Human Affairs (BETHA) Endowment annual grant competition, two of them were from CFAES.

    The Endowment supports projects that examine the complex relationship between science and technology on society and cultural issues. A record number of 37 proposals were submitted for the 2018 competition.

    The two CFAES projects:

    Monitoring Social and Economic Impacts of Green Infrastructure: Blueprint Columbus
    Jeremy Brooks
    School of Environment and Natural Resources

    Blueprint Columbus aims to improve water quality using green infrastructure (GI), but GI may also improve mental health, physical health and social relationships. Previous research has produced mixed results about whether and in which contexts GI can produce such benefits and has largely ignored whether the planning and implementation process affects perceptions of GI in a way that affects these impacts. This project will use interviews and focus group meetings in two Columbus neighborhoods to address these gaps by capturing local perceptions of the process and outcomes associated with GI installation.

    The Global Sustainable Village
    Scott Shearer
    Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering

    Ohio State students have a desire to positively impact humanity as part of their education. As they have undertaken humanitarian courses and projects “to improve the human condition,” a gap has been identified between classroom learning environments and the field. To close this gap, a Global Sustainable Village (GSV) will be a physical focal point for this project work and provide an authentic setting for problem solving. The ability to develop technologies in a representative setting before field introduction will improve student learning, foster interdisciplinary collaborations, strengthen Ohio State-partner relationships and improve the impact of community development efforts.

  108. Faculty and Grad Students Earn NACTA Teaching Awards

    Kelly Newlon photo

    Five faculty members and two graduate students have earned awards from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) for 2018. Each will be presented their award at the 2018 NACTA Conference in Ames, IA in June.
    Among the faculty members are Nicholas Basta, School of Environment and Natural Resources; David Hix, School of Environment and Natural Resources; Mary Kay Pohlschneider, Department of Food Science & Technology; Christopher Simons, Department of Food Science & Technology; and Roger Williams, School of Environment and Natural Resources.

    Kelly Newlon (pictured), a doctoral student in the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL), and Mei-Ling Shotts, Food Science and Technology, will receive NACTA's Graduate Student Teaching Award. This award recognizes graduate students who excel as teachers in the agricultural disciplines.

    NACTA is professional society that focuses on the scholarship of teaching and learning agriculture and related disciplines at the postsecondary level. Members of NACTA are from two-year and four-year colleges, public and private.

     Formed in 1955, the mission of NACTA is to:

    • Provide for all post-secondary teachers of agriculture a forum for discussion of questions and issues relating to the professional advancement of agricultural discussion.

    • Seek improvement in the post-secondary teaching of agriculture through examination and discussion of courses and curricula, teaching and testing techniques, facilities and materials.

    • Encourage, promote and reward instructional excellence in agriculture and the research supporting this instruction.


  109. CFAES Goes to Washington

    photo of Senator Portman and CFAES leaders and CARET reps

    As many faculty and staff were preparing for spring break, community representatives along with members of CFAES leadership went to Washington to advocate on behalf of the college and Ohio.

    The Council on Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching (CARET) was created in 1982 by deans of agriculture at land-grant universities, including The Ohio State University. The council works closely with the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, and is composed of representatives from the 50 states, the U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia.

    The council and its representatives advocate for greater national support and understanding of the land-grant university system’s food and agricultural research, extension, and teaching programs that enhance the quality of life for all people. CFAES has three CARET representatives: Nate Andre, Andre Farms; Susan Crowell, Farm and Dairy; and Terry McClure, McClure Farms.

    The week of March 5, Ohio’s CARET representatives along with Cathann A. Kress, David Benfield, Roger Rennekamp, and Adam Ward met with the entire Ohio Congressional delegation. The Ohio delegation highlighted the grand challenges CFAES is tackling along with the funding being requested for the various programs that impact the work we do.

    Ohio’s CARET representatives play a significant role in advocating for funding for our three mission areas because they are the farmers, stakeholders and community members directly impacted by it. They represent the Ohioans we serve.

    “Ohio community leaders advocating on behalf of our land-grant funding, in all three mission areas, teaching, research, and outreach is paramount to our success,” Ward said. “Elected officials want to hear directly from the individuals that their policies and legislation impact.”

    Ohio’s CARET representatives also meet with Ohio legislators and their assistants in the fall to advocate for policies that incentivize the work of faculty and students.

  110. Agunga Awarded Grant to Improve Agricultural Extension in Pakistan

    Umair Talib, Ph. D. graduate, University of Faisalabad Robert Agunga, Associate Prof & C4D Project Leader Dr. Badar N. Siddiqui, Chair, Department of Agricultural Extension

    Robert Agunga, associate professor in the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL) has been awarded a grant for $455,239 from The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine for an international development research project titled, "Improving Agricultural Extension in Pakistan through Communication for Development.” The purpose is to pilot-test a communication strategy for improving aid effectiveness.
    Agunga received one of 14 grants, chosen from 220 proposals, under Phase Seven of the Pakistan – U.S. Science and Technology Cooperation Program.
    This project, which seeks to improve agricultural extension in Pakistan through communication for development, is in partnership with Pakistan partner, Badar Siddiqui, head of the Department of Agricultural Extension Education at the Pir Mehr Ali Shah (PMAS) Arid Agriculture University at Rawalpindi near Islamabad, Pakistan.
    “As a department, we are very proud of Dr. Agunga for this grant award, but mostly for his work in improving agricultural extension in Pakistan and the lives of its citizens,” said Tracy Kitchel, professor and chair in ACEL. “As a land-grant university, we connect the university to the people of Ohio, but when we do international work like this, it’s an opportunity to connect Ohio to the world.”
    The project is aimed at finding a strategy for improving the effectiveness of international development aid. Success will require the inclusion of communication strategists in development programming under the rubric of Communication for Development (C4D), an emerging science aimed at addressing human dimension elements in development, such as participation, integration and capacity building. This new cadre of development professionals is currently non-existent and will be trained.
    In this project, Agunga and his Pakistani counterparts will implement a social science-based, Master’s degree program in “Communication for Development” (C4D) at the university level to improve development performance and strengthen agricultural extension in the field by promoting participatory development strategies.
    In the photo are Umair Talib, Ph. D. graduate, University of Faisalabad, Agunga, and Badar N. Sidiqui, Chair, Department of Agricultural Extension at Faisalabad.

  111. Gray receives Distinguished Teaching Award

    Suzanne Gray, an assistant professor of aquatic physiological ecology in the School of Environment and Natural Resources was paid a surprise visit this semester.

    While teaching her capstone course on local and global water quality and aquatic issues on March 1, Gray was surprised by leaders from across the university with an announcement that she is a recipient of the 2018 Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching. The award honors faculty members at The Ohio State University for superior teaching. The awards ceremony will take place April 30.

    Surprising Gray were Kay Wolf, vice provost for academic policy and faculty resources, Office of Academic Affairs; Cathann Kress, dean, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences; Jeff Sharp, director, School of Environment and Natural Resources; and Kim Gray, senior director, The Ohio State University Alumni Association. Also in on the surprise were current students and staff members in the school.

    Recipients of the award are nominated by current or former students or faculty colleagues and are chosen by a committee of alumni, students and faculty. They receive an honorarium, an increase in their base salaries and are inducted into the university’s Academy of Teaching. 

  112. Watters named International Certified Crop Adviser of the Year

    Harold Watters holding plant and soil probe

    The American Society of Agronomy (ASA) has named Harold Watters, associate professor and field specialist for OSU Extension, the International Crop Adviser of the Year.

    The award honors outstanding contributions to agronomy through education, national and international service, and research. In a press release, ASA reported:

    Watters works directly with agronomic crop producers, crop advisers and extension educators, to provide relevant information in a timely manner with an emphasis on web and media outlets. Recruited as a team coordinator in 2004 for the 80-member Ohio State Agronomic Crops Team, Watters has influence on Ohio agronomic crop production education. Watters' works in the areas of agronomic crop production practices, systematic data evaluation and field research done locally to confirm best practices.

    Highlights of his contributions:
    - Serves as editorial coordinator of the Crop Observation and Recommendation Network newsletter - C.O.R.N.
    - Serves as an informal mentor to new team members.
    - Visited Ukraine 10 times to assist producers there in adoption of modern crop production methods.
    The International Certified Crop Adviser of the Year Award is designed to annually recognize a certified crop adviser who delivers exceptional customer service, is highly innovative, has shown that they are a leader in their field, and has contributed substantially to the exchange of ideas and the transfer of agronomic knowledge within the agriculture industry. The award recipient will be recognized at both the Commodity Classic and the American Society of Agronomy Annual Meeting. The award consists of hotel and travel expenses to the Commodity Classic Meeting and ASA Annual Meeting, a $2,000 honorarium, a commemorative plaque, and a one-year membership in the American Society of Agronomy. The ICCA of the Year Award celebrates a level of proficiency that belongs to an individual and not to a company.

  113. CFAES and South African institutions sign agreement

    Photo of signers of memorandum of understanding

    A new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), signed Nov. 21, will connect CFAES to South Africa's  Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform (DRDAR) and the African Footprints of Hope Organization (AFHO). 

    Dean Cathann A. Kress signed the MOU with Mlibo Qoboshiyane, minister of DRDAR, and Nolitha Nkomana, director and founder of AFHO.

    The relationship has been brewing since 2006. The goal is research collaboration in agriculture, rural development, 4-H and Youth Development; to build the research capacity in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa; and to establish a 4-H Youth Developement organization in the area.

    Initial outcomes anticipated from the MOU include:

    ·         Academic growth and development of CFAES faculty and Extension educators,
    ·         Promotion of the internationalization of Ohio State University Extension,
    ·         Transfer of 4-H Youth Development knowledge to Eastern Cape South Africa,
    ·         Training of South African youths for self-reliance and development of entrepreneurial skills.

    In the photo, from left to right, are: Roger Rennekamp, Cathann A. Kress, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, Nolitha Nkomana and Lumkile L. Ngada.

  114. Dean Kress shares S.W.O.T. in State of the College address

    As part of her State of the College address on the Friday of Homecoming weekend, Cathann A. Kress, CFAES dean and vice president for agricultural administration, shared The Ohio State University crest, which says, “Disciplina in Civitatem,” meaning “Education for Citizenship.” “It calls on us to be leaders. It calls on us to use what we discover here to change the world,” Kress told the crowd watching in person and via streaming video.

    Dean Kress also shared her views on the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, or SWOTs, facing CFAES.


    • Success of students and depth of talent of faculty and staff
    • Strong, collaborative partnerships
    • Numerous relevant specialties and ability to bring disciplines together
    • Our mission: Unchanging, fundamental and of paramount importance: We Sustain Life


    • Temporary leadership, and consequently, inconsistent direction
    • Focus on tactical rather than strategic actions
    • Ad-hoc style of operating
    • Many of us seem unsure of the basic principles and values of the organization
    • Focus and identity


    • General education revisions, including sustainability and leadership
    • Strategic alignment of resources
    • Partnerships
    • Discovery Themes
    • Digital education


    • Declining federal and state financial support
    • Unwillingness to change
    • Consumer-driven decisions and lack of awareness
    • Two major facilities challenges:
      • Renovating and replacing buildings with aging or outdated systems
      • Maintaining facilities constructed in a modern and digital era

    Watch the address.


  115. Heiby and Nicol selected for national agricultural education symposium

    Frances Nicol, Plain City

    Ohio State agriscience education students Logan Heiby and Frances Nicol (pictured) were selected to attend the Future Agriscience Teacher (FAST) Symposium as part of the National Association of Agricultural Educators’ (NAAE) annual conference in December in Nashville, Tennessee.

    Heiby and Nicol are two of 20 agriscience education students from across the nation who were selected to spend five days receiving professional development that will help them in their future careers as classroom agriculture teachers. The symposium will include training in inquiry-based classroom instruction, classroom management techniques, cultural competence training, and the development of engaging agricultural curriculum to promote and enhance the science of agriculture.

    “I am excited when our young educators seek opportunities to take their skills to the next level,” said Tracy Kitchel, professor of agriscience education and chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership. “The FAST Symposium will provide Logan and Frances with additional training that will not only greatly impact their skills in the classroom, but will have a positive impact on their future students.”

    Heiby, of Coldwater, and Nicol, of Plain City, are seniors studying agriscience education. Heiby will begin his student teaching experience at Marion Local Schools under the supervision of Matt Elsass in January. Nicol will complete her student teaching at Northwestern High School with Erica Hillard as her supervisor.

  116. AEDE faculty receive National Science Foundation grant

    Sathya Gopalakrishnan, professor in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), along with faculty from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, the University of Georgia and Duke University, have secured significant funding from the National Science Foundation. Their work will analyze the ways in which coastal processes and economic decisions about land use and coastal engineering interact to determine the nature and timing of adaptation to climate risk.

    Their research will address the interactions of natural forces, economic decisions and public policies over long time horizons to determine how the built environment and patterns of human settlement react to rising seas and related coastline changes. These issues are of concern to a significant part of the U.S. population, especially along the East Coast and Gulf of Mexico, with issues related to persistent flooding and storm damage. A fundamental aim of this research is to provide knowledge and tools to look further forward in time in responding to coastal and environmental changes. The results will advance knowledge about how beaches and coastal environments react to various storm-related scenarios. It will also provide insight into how real estate markets react to complex changes in environmental conditions, public policies, scientific knowledge, and individual attitudes and values.
    Also receiving an NSF grant are AEDE professors Elena Irwin, Yongyang Cai, Ian Sheldon and Alan Randall, along with other colleagues from CFAES and from Ohio State. Their multidisciplinary research on building and creating a new integrated and stochastic Dynamic Regional Food, Energy, Water Systems (DoctoR-FEWS) modeling framework that incorporates key human and linkages across local, regional and global scales will examine the following research question: What are the potential effects of uncertain deglobalization on the sustainability of regional FEWS? Learn more about the grant.

  117. AEDE hires new farm management expert

    Ben Brown

    The Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Developmental Economics has hired a farm management program manager. Ben Brown will serve as AEDE’s primary liaison between faculty members conducting research on areas related to farm management and OSU Extension faculty and field specialists throughout the state.

    Brown joins AEDE after completing a master’s degree in agricultural and applied economics at the University of Missouri (B.S. from Kansas State), where he also worked at the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute. 

    Given Brown’s background and experience, he is the ideal candidate to help AEDE develop innovative farm management programs that address critical farm management issues affecting Ohioans and beyond, said Tim Haab, AEDE department chair.
    “Ben brings a wealth of industry experience and experience with data analysis and interpretation which will enable him to develop a comprehensive and innovative farm management program,” Haab said. “His expertise will integrate AEDE’s research, teaching and outreach and inform on marketing and price analysis, farm financial management and investing, risk evaluation and management, agricultural processing, and environmental issues.”

  118. Food Science honors Hall of Distinction recipients

    The Department of Food Science and Technology honored its 2017 Hall of Distinction recipients at a reception Oct. 6, recognizing those who have made significant contributions to food sciences, in the industry and at Ohio State.

    Those honored were:

    David H. Brown, who graduated from The Ohio State University in 1962 with a bachelor’s degree in dairy technology. Brown’s career included work in quality assurance at Gerber Products and in research, product development and marketing of both infant and adult food products at Frigo Cheese and the Ross Laboratories Division of Abbott Laboratories. At Dairyland Food Laboratories, Brown assisted in the development, application and promotion of enzyme modified cheese. Brown later formed Dairy Specialties Inc.

    Surinder Kumar received his MS and PhD from The Ohio State University. Kumar is the founding partner and president of Arora Innovations, an organization dedicated to the development of innovative leaders, teams and products for the consumer products sector. Kumar has more than 35 years of experience in innovation leadership and has served at a number of companies including Unilever, Quaker Oats, Frito-Lay, PepsiCo, Warner Lambert, Mead Johnson and Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company. He received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Ohio State.

    John Miller received his BS and MS from The Ohio State University. Miller co-founded Seiberling Associates, an engineering and technical consulting company that serves the food, dairy, pharmaceutical and biotech industries. Some of his involvement at Ohio State includes the CFAES Alumni Society Board, OARDC and OSU Extension Committee, Wilbur A. Gould Food Industries Center Advisory Board, and the Department of Food Science and Technology External Advisory Board.

    Donald Schriver graduated from The Ohio State University and served the agricultural industry for over three decades as a communicator and cooperative leader. While serving as the CEO of Milk Marketing Inc., Ohio’s largest milk cooperative, he was instrumental in the production of the first single-serve milk package in a round, resealable plastic bottle. Other work included serving two terms on the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee for Trade by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

    Timothy P. Smucker is chairman emeritus of The J.M. Smucker Company, which is the leading marketer and manufacturer of consumer food brands such as Smucker’s, Folgers, Jif, Crisco and Pillsbury. In pet food and pet snacks, some of its brands include Meow Mix, Milk-Bone and Kibbles ’n Bits. The company has been recognized by Fortune magazine as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in the United States. Smucker was appointed by Ohio Gov. John Kasich to serve as a trustee of The Ohio State University from June 2011 to May 2020.

    James Harper was honored posthumously. Harper served as a professor at The Ohio State University, where his career in teaching and research in food science encompassed over 70 years and included advising over 150 students. The quality of his research was repeatedly recognized nationally and internationally with awards. Other work included working on a whey protein concentrate program at the New Zealand Dairy Research Institute (NZDRI). Upon his return to Ohio State, Harper served as the J.T. “Stubby” Parker Endowed Chair in Dairy Foods for 20 years. He retired from the department in 2013.

  119. Brian Roe speaking at 2017 Food Tank Summit

    Brian Roe is among the speakers at the sold-out 2017 Food Tank Summit on Food Waste in New York City on Sept. 13.

    The event will include panel discussions, speakers from around the world and keynote speakers moderated by journalists from The New York Times, Vice, Bloomberg, Modern Farmer, and more. Within just four hours of announcing the event, Food Tank received four-times more applications than there are seats.

    The entire NYC Food Tank Summit can also be viewed remotely via Facebook Live and live on FoodTank.com. Additionally, Food Tank will be featuring backstage interviews with speakers all day using Instagram Live and Periscope/Twitter Live. After the event, all videos will be immediately archived on Food Tank's YouTube Channel.

    Audiences will be able to participate in extended question-and-answer sessions with topics ranging from leveraging capital to fund innovations and fill research gaps, to forging creative partnerships, and encouraging behavior change.

    Research indicates that as much as 40% of our food supply is wasted, with collateral damage that includes economic loss, unnecessary food insecurity as well as climate and environmental issues. Major contributors to the issue include confusion about food expiration labels, local composting rules, and liability surrounding food donations.

    Following the national event the Ohio State Food Waste Collaborative Conference and Webinar will take place on Sept. 15, at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center.

    Participants can participate in a full day of programming in person at the 4-H Center for a registration fee of $20.00, which includes lunch. Students may attend for free but registration is required. A complimentary live stream will be available for those that cannot join us in person. Live stream participants must register in advance.

  120. Joe Donnemeyer is keynote at international conference

    picture of rusty lock

    Ohio State Professor Emeritus Joe Donnemeyer is one of three keynote speakers at the first-ever International Rural Crime Conference in South Africa Sept. 27.

    The theme of the conference is "The challenges of rural crimes affecting agriculture." Donnemeyer will speak on the impact of crime on farms, Elaine Barclay from the University of New England in Australia will discuss crime and crime prevention on farms in Australia, and Emmanuel Bunei from Mount Kenya University in Kenya on will discuss stock theft in Africa: current challenges and future direction.

    For more information, visit agriorbit.com/first-international-rural-crime-conference.

  121. New ATI facilities dedicated in May

    Photo of new greenhouse with Nathan Donley, ATI Greenhouse manager,  Emily Fulk, Environmental Sciences student from Ashland  Dean Kress,  Emma Trapp, Greenhouse Management student from Orrville.

    Experiential learning is one of the hallmarks of an Ohio State ATI education. Now, two new facilities dedicated on May 9 will play a significant role in providing hands-on opportunities for students in the landscape, construction, and greenhouse programs.

    The new landscape and construction laboratory will provide climate-controlled space during cold weather, since a significant amount of the academic year takes place during what would be considered "off season" in those industries.

    According to Ben King, coordinator of the construction management and construction systems management programs, he will use the entire building as a teaching tool, not just the space it provides for construction activities. "For example, I intend use the heating and duct system for diagnostic and flow testing for my mechanical systems class,” said King.

    The landscape laboratory portion will be used much like a landscape firm’s shop would be, providing space for teaching equipment safety as well as for landscape projects when weather isn't conducive to working outside, explained Laura Deeter, coordinator of the landscape program.

    The new greenhouse range includes three greenhouses – a light-exclusion greenhouse with motorized black-out curtains, a propagation house, and a greenhouse dedicated to vegetable production, including hydroponics. A computerized automation system receives information from an adjacent weather station and adjusts environmental conditions accordingly.

    Uttara Samarakoon, coordinator of Ohio State ATI’s greenhouse program, noted that the new greenhouses are vital to the future direction of the greenhouse programs, preparing students in an industry that is always evolving. The facilities especially complement Ohio State ATI’s new specialization in greenhouse engineering technology, which, according to Samarakoon, is filling a critical industry need.

    Prior to enlisting the help of two greenhouse students in cutting the ribbon, Cathann A. Kress, vice president for agricultural administration and dean of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, emphasized the importance of the new facilities. “They expand our whole portfolio of opportunities,” Kress said. “Ohio State ATI is one of the gems of the college.” In the photo, Kress is second from the right. With her are Nathan Donley, ATI greenhouse manager; Emily Fulk, environmental sciences student from Ashland, Ohio; and Emma Trapp, greenhouse management student from Orrville, Ohio.




  122. Project to improve resiliency of Ohio farms

    The Initiative for Food and AgriCultural Transformation is teaming up with Solutions from the Land on a multiyear project to help Ohio farmers lead the way to an agriculture that preserves the land and adapts to a changing climate, and a food system that takes care of all Ohioans.

    The project launched in April with the inaugural meeting of the 34-member steering committee. 

    One of the first steps will be to address the challenge of food security in Ohio. One in six households struggle with keeping nutritious food on the table, and nearly one in four children face days without adequate, nutritious food.

    InFACT co-leads Casey Hoy and Brian Snyder will be joined on the steering committee by Ohio State colleagues Bobby Moser, David Hanselmann and Jill Clark. Solutions from the Land is a national collaboration led by a group of active farm, forestry and conservation leaders. It is coordinating the three-year first phase of a longer term project with the support of a $500,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

  123. Cornish joins panel charged with steering course of biofuels R&D

    Katrina Cornish

    Katrina Cornish, an internationally recognized authority on alternative natural rubber biosynthesis and production, has been appointed to an independent panel responsible for advising the federal Biomass Research and Development Initiative.

    The initiative is a collaboration between the U.S. departments of energy and agriculture to advance bioenergy technologies, specifically to find new ways to refine various types of feedstocks and crops into next-generation biofuels or bio-based chemicals and products.

    Cornish’s appointment to the Biomass Research and Development Technical Advisory Committee is for an initial three-year term. Made up of approximately 30 volunteers from industry, academia, nonprofits and local government, the committee holds quarterly, public meetings to develop recommendations advising the secretaries of energy and agriculture on the technical focus and direction of federal research and development.

    In her new role, Cornish, shown on the left in the photo, hopes to bring more attention—and more funding—to promising alternative crops, and less on the more common sources of biofuels, such as corn.

    “Some of the smaller technologies and crops can make a much larger impact on the economy and bio-economy than what is currently seeing most of the money,” she said.

    Cornish joined Ohio State’s Horticulture and Crop Science and Food Agricultural and Biological Engineering departments at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center in Wooster in 2010 as an Ohio Research Scholar. She holds the Endowed Chair in Bio-based Emergent Materials in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and is director of research for the Program of Excellence in Natural Rubber Alternatives.

    Before coming to Ohio State, and before her six-year stint in industry, she led the USDA’s development of domestic natural rubber and rubber latex sources, and her inventions form the foundation of the U.S. domestic rubber industry. Her startup company, EnergyEne, is producing a high-performance natural rubber alternative that allows medical professionals to have the natural latex gloves they prefer while avoiding the risk of allergic reactions.

    A fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and American Association for the Advancement of Science, Cornish has 225 publications and about 20 patents. She holds a PhD from the University of Birmingham, England.

  124. OARDC hosts STEM Boy Scout Camporee

    Photo of boyscouts at OARDC

    The Killbuck District Boy Scouts of America held its spring Camporee at the Wooster campus recently.

    Some 85 scouts and 40 leaders attended the three-day event. Scouts camped in the Secrest Arboretum and toured STEM stations on Electron microscopy where they viewed insects and viruses; pollinators; wheat research; and geocaching. They also toured the quasar energy group facility to learn about the conversion of waste materials into energy and they learned about native plants and horticulture in the Secrest Arboretum. 

    The scouts also did a service project in the Arboretum where they straightened signs, pulled weeds and provided other assistance.

  125. Extension's financial counseling featured in federal newsletter

    photo of stop foreclosure sign

    Ohio State University Extension was featured in the March 2017 issue of The Bridge, a newsletter distributed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

    The article features efforts that Extension has made in financial education related to foreclosure prevention. To read the article, go to https://www.hudexchange.info/resources/documents/Housing-Counseling-Bridge-Newsletter-2017-03.pdf.

  126. Marissa Engle honored for resident hall accomplishments at ATI

    Marissa Engle photo

    ATI Resident Advisor (RA) Marissa Engle was selected out of nearly 400 RAs to receive the "Outstanding Paraprofessional Commitment to Academic Initiatives" Award on Thursday, April 13, in Columbus at the Residence Life Faculty and Staff Programming Celebration.

    The celebration honors those who have made significant contributions toward academics and positive learning environments in Ohio State’s residence halls and villages.

    This particular award recognizes a student staff member who has gone above and beyond to support faculty engagement and learning outside of the classroom.

    Marissa has hosted 8 faculty dinner programs in the village over the past two years -- often preparing full meals from scratch. These programs have been some of the most well-attended and most popular among residents. During January move-in, she provided residents with soup and academic support resources to have a “Souper Semester.”

    Additionally, Marissa’s "Mom's Fridge" wall in her apartment allows her residents to boast about their academic accomplishments throughout the year.


  127. Malak Esseili Receives Distinguished Diversity Enhancement Award

    Image of diversity honorees

    Malak Esseili, research scientist in the Food Animal Health Research Program in Wooster, was recognized on April 18 for her efforts regarding diversity. 

    Faculty, staff, students and alumni who enhance diversity with cutting-edge curriculum, mentorship, programs or policies can be nominated for the Distinguished Diversity Enhancement Award. The award recognizes diversity efforts in areas such as religion, race, sexual orientation and economic status. Recipients are awarded for demonstrating the university’s values and making diversity and inclusiveness part of the university’s best practices.

    President Drake presented the 2017 recipients a plaque and $1,200 cash award in recognition of their important work. This year’s winners will also be honored on the field at Ohio Stadium during the September 23 Ohio State football game.

    Recognized as a diversity advocate throughout the Wooster community,  Esseili has had a profound affect on the diversity efforts on the Ohio State Wooster Campus. She was a founder and organizer of multiple programs and events that promote understanding among people of different cultural, religious and racial backgrounds, including the Celebration of Nations, Cultural Connections and Minorities: Identities and Misconceptions. These programs, which were supported by two CFAES Office of Equity and Inclusion mini-grants and are currently supported by the Wooster diversity committee, have been recognized as opportunities that bring together students, faculty and staff in ways that create more supportive environments.

    Others recognized included Tamara Davis, social work, Mariame Diabate, undergraduate student in biology, DaVonti' Haynes, graduate student in social work, LeRoy Ricksy, Jr., undergraduate student in criminology and criminal justice and the University Libraries Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

    Esseili, in the purple scarf, is in the middle of the back row in the photo.

  128. LeJeune working with U.N. to combat antibiotic resistance

    Jeff LeJeune in lab photo

    Jeffrey LeJeune, head of the college's Food Animal Health Research Program, is in the midst of a three-month assignment in Rome to work with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization to combat antibiotic resistance.

    The FAO recruited LeJeune to provide technical advice and to help launch and coordinate several of the initiatives outlined in a dire U.N. declaration on antibiotic resistance.

    LeJeune participated in a U.N. gathering Sept. 21 when the entire assembly signed a political declaration requiring countries to create national plans to fight antibiotic resistance in medicine, agriculture and the environment. The plans will be based on a blueprint on antimicrobial resistance developed in 2015 by the FAO, the U.N.’s World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

    “It’s a big task, but it’s exciting. It happened really fast,” LeJeune said. “I know several people in FAO, and we follow each other’s work.

    “It was almost a year ago when they mentioned they might be working on something on antimicrobial resistance, and I asked them to keep me posted. And I didn’t hear anything in a long time, and then they called and asked if I would be interested in coming over, and how soon could I be there?”

    With the Sept. 21 commitment from the U.N., the FAO is ready to go from planning to implementation, and that’s where LeJeune will help.

    LeJeune, a veterinarian and a microbiologist, has long been involved with an interdisciplinary group at Ohio State focusing on antibiotic resistance. Led by Tom Wittum, professor and chair of the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, the antibiotic resistance working group takes a “One Health” approach to the problem, tackling it from the standpoints of human, animal and environmental health.

    The team has representatives from colleges across campus at Ohio State: CFAES, the College of Veterinary Medicine, the College of Medicine, the College of Pharmacy, the College of Nursing and the College of Public Health.

    “They are all intertwined,” LeJeune said. “You can’t just look at antimicrobial resistance as a medical problem or a veterinary problem. It’s all linked, and you have to understand all of the underlying causes of antibiotic resistance in order to get a handle on control strategies.”

    The team is taking seriously the National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, developed by the Obama administration in 2015, LeJeune said. The plan calls for increases in research, surveillance and monitoring, among other action items.

    The Ohio State team is working on developing new diagnostic tests and surveillance methods and is conducting some cutting-edge research, LeJeune said. The national action plan also calls for increases in international collaboration, he said.  

    “So this fits right into the national action plan,” LeJeune said. “This is a global problem. We’re not going to solve it independently.”

    The One Health outlook is precisely the approach the U.N. is taking by bringing together the FAO, WHO and OIE.

    While with the FAO, LeJeune anticipates working with nations that have developed plans to work on antimicrobial resistance to make sure their plans are aligned with their capabilities and there are systems for monitoring and evaluation in place.

    “We need to be able to tell if we’re making any progress,” he said.

    Different nations are at different levels of adopting programs to control antimicrobial use in agriculture, he said. He expects to begin working with nations that have the least control measures in place, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Southeast Asia. He will provide technical support and input and serve as a liaison for those countries to the FAO.

    “Through my work here at Ohio State, I have a good understanding of the One Health approach, and I’ve had the opportunity to travel quite a bit to some of these developing countries, so I have an idea of agricultural practices globally,” LeJeune said.

    After two years, the U.N. secretary-general will gauge each country’s progress.

    The Sept. 21 gathering was only the fourth time the U.N. has convened to address a health issue, following action on Ebola in 2014, noncommunicable diseases in 2011 and HIV/AIDS in 2001.

    Antibiotics and similar drugs, collectively known as antimicrobial agents, have been around for 70 years. But because they’ve been used so extensively, organisms have built up resistance to the drugs, rendering them less effective – a problem considered by many to be the world’s most pressing public-health concern.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year at least 2 million people in the U.S. become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics, and at least 23,000 people die as a direct result of these infections. Worldwide, the annual death toll attributed to antimicrobial resistance is estimated at 700,000, and by 2050 that number is projected to increase to 10 million if urgent steps aren’t taken.

    Because of the complexity of the problem, the most effective response will include a coordinated effort across disciplines, LeJeune said, including in medicine, agriculture, veterinary medicine, public health and environmental health.

    Ohio State takes part in education, outreach and research and has a multidisciplinary team of individuals who meet regularly and are actively involved in a number of complementary approaches.

    LeJeune’s laboratory has been working on understanding the ecology and mechanisms of how antibiotic resistance is spread, from bacteria to bacteria, from farm to farm, and around the world. Researchers there also study how farm management practices affect disease transmission, including the tracking of wildlife such as birds, which are known to transmit antibiotic-resistant organisms, from one farm to another. 

    LeJeune’s lab has also explored how bacteriophages — viruses that infect bacteria — can transmit antibiotic resistance from one bacterium to another, and it is developing educational materials to help agricultural workers protect themselves.

  129. College faculty win national teaching awards

    The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) honored Ann D. Christy of The Ohio State University and F. Bailey Norwood of Oklahoma State University as recipients of the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences. Six regional and two new teacher awardees were also named recipients of the 2016 Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences. The awards, which celebrate university faculty for their use of innovative teaching methods and service to students, were presented at the 129th APLU Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas, on Nov. 13.

    In recognition of their scholarship, exemplary pedagogy and dedication to instruction, the annual awards include stipends of $5,000 for the national winners and $2,000 for regional and new teacher honorees to be used for improving teaching at their respective universities.

    The six regional awards were presented to Elizabeth A. Applegate of the University of California, Davis; Emily B. Buck of The Ohio State University; John Ewing of The Pennsylvania State University; Brian H. Lower of The Ohio State University; Zhu H. Ning of Southern University and A&M College; and Nicole L. P. Stedman of the University of Florida. Rebecca G. Lawver of Utah State University and Eric S. McLamore of the University of Florida each received best new teacher honors.

    “Public universities’ primary mission is to educate students and inspire them to apply the skills and knowledge learned in the classroom to transform the world outside it,” said Ian Maw, Vice President of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources at APLU. “Educators play a central role in helping students realize their full potential. This year’s winners of Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences have demonstrated an uncompromising commitment to their students and the community they serve, and we’re delighted to spotlight their exceptional work in agricultural sciences.”

    Details on the 2016 recipients of the Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences follow:

    Ann D. Christy, The Ohio State University

    For Professor Christy, teaching is about inspiring and empowering students by engaging them in course content and the process of learning itself. Over the past 20 years, she has established herself as a master educator with a dedication and commitment to students and to the scholarship of teaching and learning. Prior to becoming a faculty member, she worked full-time in the engineering consulting industry – informing her teaching in courses such as bioenergy, biological engineering, environmental controls, professional development, thermodynamics, waste management, first-year engineering design, senior capstone design, and college teaching. She has won multiple teaching awards at the college, university, and national levels. Her research focuses on bioenergy, environment, and engineering education, and she has generated over 120 publications.

    Her service includes mentoring graduate students and young faculty in their own teaching. She helped found and subsequently chaired the Education Division of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. She also served as interim associate dean for undergraduate engineering education, provided faculty leadership in Ohio State's transition from the quarter to semester system, and most recently was interim director of the Engineering Education Innovation Center. In that role, she facilitated the establishment of a new Department of Engineering Education, shepherding the relatively rare event of the birth of a new department.

    She earned both her B.S. (agricultural engineering) and M.S. (biomedical engineering) from The Ohio State University, and her Ph.D. (environmental engineering) from Clemson University.

    F. Bailey Norwood, Oklahoma State University

    Students attend Professor Norwood’s lectures in diverse locations, from The Oklahoma State University football stadium to the local farmers market, and they learn everything from the economics of markets to retirement planning to the life of a dairy cow. One commonality across all his students, though, is an appreciation for his lively teaching style and earnest concern for their success in life.

    Norwood holds the Barry Pollard, M.D. / P&K Equipment Professorship in the Department of Agricultural Economics, where he teaches and advises undergraduate students and conducts research on consumer preferences for food. He is the author of a textbook and two books on controversial agricultural topics and taught the first Massively Open Online Course (MOOC) at Oklahoma State University, titled Farm to Fork. Two of his four articles on teaching and advising have received awards.

    He earned his B.S. from Clemson University, M.S. from Kansas State University, and Ph.D. from North Carolina State University.


  130. CFAES team strives to improve Tanzania ag technical institutes

    Tanzania savannah photograph

    Five faculty members in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) are currently collaborating with partners in Tanzania on a project titled “Improving Rural Outreach Capacity in Tanzania: A Pilot Curriculum Reform Initiative to Increase Relevance of Trainer Training.” The project, partially funded by the Office of Outreach and Engagement and the Ohio State-led Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI), seeks to improve the overall quality of training for agricultural extension workers in Tanzania and, in turn, enhance food security and improve livelihoods.

    A major goal of the Tanzanian extension service is to improve the agricultural productivity of the more than 75 percent of the nation’s 46 million inhabitants who reside in rural areas and depend on agriculture as their main form of livelihood. These extension workers are trained at one of Tanzania’s Ministry of Agriculture Technical Institutes (MATIs). Through the MATIs, the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries (MAFC) trains frontline extension workers at the Certificate and Diploma levels, who then are deployed at the village, ward and district levels to provide extension delivery to these rural populations, especially smallholder farmers.

    However, concerns have been expressed by MALF, Ministry of Local Government and other external stakeholders about the quality of the graduates being produced through the MATIs and their lack of skills necessary for contributing to agricultural and rural development.

    This is the impetus for a new project led by the Office of International Programs in Agriculture (IPA), working in conjunction with other faculty in Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) as well as the Sokoine University of Agriculture’s (SUA) Department of Agricultural Extension and Community Development, to improve the training that is provided to the trainers of extension agents at the MATIs. This project, formally titled “Improving Rural Outreach Capacity in Tanzania: A Pilot Curriculum Reform Initiative to Increase Relevance of Trainer Training,” is partially funded by a 2016 Impact Grant from the Office of Outreach and Engagement at Ohio State. It serves as a pilot study centered on one MATI in particular – Ilonga. Ilonga is a MATI located in the Kilosa district, approximately 100 km west of Morogoro where the SUA campus resides.

    The project’s immediate objective is to revise the programs of study at the MATI - Ilonga so it can better reflect the changing needs of Tanzania’s agriculture and improve the performance and employability of its graduates.

    “The curriculum and training programs at most of these MATIs have not been revised in recent years,” says Dave Hansen, Professor Emeritus in IPA. “Training materials and experiential learning opportunities are often lacking, and linkages with external stakeholders including those in the private sector are limited.”
    In addition to Hansen, the CFAES project team includes Mark Erbaugh, Director of IPA and Principal Investigator on the project; Graham Cochran, Professor and Senior Administrative Officer in CFAES; Mary Rodriguez, Assistant Professor in the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL); and Barry Ward, Assistant Professor and Leader of Production Business Management in the Department of Extension.
    Hansen, Cochran and Rodriguez initiated the project’s activities during a July 2016 visit to Tanzania, where they worked with members from SUA and MALF to complete intensive project planning. During the visit the team also learned more about the MATI and Livestock Training Agency (LITA) system, including needs, opportunities and the formal curriculum validation process required to make official changes in the MATI or LITA curriculum.
    “What the Ohio State team is really aiming to do is to broaden the network of stakeholders, including those from the private sector, who can be engaged in the training process with our other Tanzanian partners to bring about sustainable, positive change to the way in which MATI’s train their extension workers,” says Erbaugh, who has worked in East Africa for more that twenty years on projects related to higher education capacity building, agricultural extension training and integrated pest management. 
    This project with the MATIs emerged from and is partially supported by the ongoing Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI), a major Feed the Future project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and administered by The Ohio State University through IPA since 2011. iAGRI maintains a project management office in Morogoro on SUA’s campus. 
    Going forward, the project will complete a needs assessment to describe current trends in agricultural extension work in Tanzania, competencies needed by front line extension workers, and the training gaps to be overcome. A set of recommendations for curriculum revisions and staff development will then be developed, followed by two initial short courses for tutors at MATI Ilonga in January 2017.
    It is through this and other collaborative efforts that Ohio State, along with its longtime partners in Tanzania, strives to further bolster Tanzania's ongoing progression towards food security and improved livelihoods.
  131. Federal grant funds Ohio State study of plant biofuel potential

    Pennycress plant, sillicle and mature seeds photo

    The U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Agriculture have selected Ohio State researchers for a $1.16 million grant to investigate the bioenergy potential of the plant pennycress.

    Ana Alonso, associate professor of molecular genetics, will lead a team with colleagues Erich Grotewold, professor of molecular genetics and of horticulture and crop science, and Ajay Shah, assistant professor of food, agricultural and biological engineering, in the project, called “Development of Resources and Tools to Improve Oil Content and Quality in Pennycress.”

    Alonso directs the Targeted Metabolomics Laboratory in the Center for Applied Plant Sciences; Grotewold is director of CAPS and the Arabidopsis Biological Resource Center.

    The goal of this research is to address the need for an alternative supply of jet fuel using native plants that do not compete with food crops. Pennycress (Thlaspi arvense), a member of the Brassicaceae, has been identified as a promising bioenergy crop, and the chemical composition of its oil is ideally suited as a renewable source of biodiesel and jet fuel. However, for pennycress (photo, left: Pennycress plant, a silicle containing seeds, and mature seeds storing a type of oil suitable for jet fuel) to become an economically viable source of specialty fuels, the Ohio State researchers need to develop molecular and genetic resources to facilitate and enhance oil production by breeding and/or genetic manipulation. They also will develop a public seed collection of pennycress mutants and transgenic lines as a community resource for accelerating research.

    The team also includes Enkhtuul Tsogtbaatar, a graduate research associate in molecular genetics, who, supported by funding from the Office of Energy and Environment, developed and validated culture conditions to grow pennycress embryos in vitro in presence of labeled carbon sources. She is currently analyzing the labeling that is incorporated in the embryo to unravel the biochemical pathways that are involved in to oil production.

  132. Two CFAES teams among three at Ohio State to create startups

    Picture of glove made from alternative rubber

    Three faculty-led teams, including two from CFAES at The Ohio State University, have decided to create startup companies based on research they have developed at the university.
    The teams made the decision after successfully completing the 2016 I-Corps@Ohio program. The seven-week program aims to help selected faculty and student teams determine if their intellectual property – such as a new technology – could be the basis of a startup company.
    The Ohio State teams were among 23 selected from 12 universities and other institutions in the state to participate in the second round of the program.
    I-Corps@Ohio is modeled after a similar program launched by the National Science Foundation in 2012. It is funded and supported by the Ohio Department of Higher Education.
    During the program, which was held this summer in Columbus, the faculty and student teams worked with mentors and other instructors to develop their ideas and determine if they were commercially feasible.
    Michael Camp, program director of I-Corps@Ohio, is founder and executive director of The Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (TEC) Institute at Ohio State.
    “The Ohio State teams, as well as their counterparts from other institutions, showed they have what it takes to validate their ideas and form a successful startup,” Camp said.
    “We want them to take what they learned and create the modern companies that will help propel the Ohio economy in the coming decades.”
    The three Ohio State teams were in the IME cohort (information technology, materials and energy and environment). These teams were:

    • Live Focus, led by Yi Zhao, associate professor of biomedical engineering. This team is developing a technology that will allow the use of smartphones to acquire microscopic images with quality comparable to mid-class commercial microscopes.
    • EnergyEne, led by Katrina Cornish, Endowed Chair and Ohio Research Scholar, Bioemergent Materials, in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, and the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering. Cornish’s team is producing a non-allergenic, high-performance natural rubber alternative.
    • Bio-Pioneers, led by Thaddeus Ezeji, associate professor of animal sciences, and Victor Ujor, assistant professor in the Renewable Energy Program at the Agricultural Technical Institute. They are producing industrial compounds from renewable resources.

    Two other Ohio State teams successfully completed the I-Corps@Ohio program and have decided to continue testing the commercial feasibility of their technology.
    One of those teams was Encapro, led by Jon Parquette, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, and Robert Tabita, Ohio Eminent Scholar and professor of microbiology and of molecular genetics. They are working on technology involving immobilization of biomolecules by self-assembled nanostructures.
    The other Ohio State team was T-regulators, led by Mireia Guerau, assistant professor of health and rehabilitation sciences. This team is developing a drug to treat relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. T-regulators was in the Medtech cohort, which involves potential startups in biotech, medical devices, diagnostics and theraputics. This cohort was a pilot partnership between I-Corps@Ohio, the Cleveland Clinic and the National Institutes of Health’s Center for Accelerated Innovations.

  133. New leader readies to celebrate centennial; plan for future

    Tracy Kitchel photo

    Tracy Kitchel, who became chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership (ACEL) in August, is planning for the future of his department even as it gets ready to celebrate its first 100 years.  

    “As we reflect on the legacy the department built over the last 100 years, we’re also looking forward,” Kitchel said. With assistance from an about-finished strategic plan, Kitchel sees the department focusing on:

    • The enhancement of individuals, communities and teams when it comes to communication, leadership and development.
    • Engaging with other departments and partners for research, scholarship and grants, allowing for an even broader impact on society.
    • Providing more time for outreach. “We have expertise to share with agriculture and the community,” Kitchel said. “We need to find ways for our busy faculty to do more of it.”
    • Building upon our reputation for effective teaching. One of the strategies for that would include reviewing changes made at the switch to semesters, to ensure graduates are meeting the needs of employers.

    “I feel fortunate to come back to Ohio when the department is ready to take the next step, to move the next level,” Kitchel said. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the department, and his doctorate in agricultural education from the University of Missouri.

    He recently served as assistant vice provost for the Office of Graduate Studies at the University of Missouri. He also was an associate professor for the Department of Agricultural Education and Leadership in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. He was a faculty member for the Center for the Collaboration and Development of Educational Innovations and the Center for Human Dimensions in Natural Resources.

    Among his awards and honors: the U.S. Department of Agriculture Excellence in Teaching Award for New Faculty, the Gold Chalk Award for excellence in graduate teaching from the University of Missouri Graduate Professional Council, Distinguished Teaching and Researcher Awards from the North Central region of the American Association for Agricultural Education (AAAE), and the Provost’s Outstanding Teaching Award from the University of Kentucky.

  134. Scary animals: Washington Post quotes college faculty

    Americans feel warmer and fuzzier about wild animals -- like sharks, bats and wolves -- than they did four decades ago, according to an article in the Washington Post. The story was based on an article in the September 2016 Biological Conservation by two CFAES animal scientists and three faculty from the School of Environment and Natural Resources. Authors included Kelly A. George, Kristina M. Slagle, Robyn S. Wilson, Steven J. Moeller, Jeremy T. Bruskotter.

    The impact of feelings towards wild animals may lead to more support and funding for wildlife efforts, the Post article says, but could also lead to more tensions and conflict in how to manage predators.


  135. Ohio State ranks 25th in list of world's most innovative universities

    Top 100 grapphic

    According to a Thomson Reuter's study, The Ohio State University ranks 25th worldwide in innovation. The rankings are based on the universities’ published research, as well as on the quantity, impact and reach of their patenting activity. "Notable performance at the intersection of these two endeavors, as quantified by a series of specific metrics, has lifted an elite selection of universities to 'Top 100” status,' reads the organization's website.

    The "Reuters Top 100: World’s Most Innovative Universities," looks exclusively at universities that have contributed the most to science and technology, leaving the greatest impact on the global economy.

    The full list shows Stanford leading the pack, with a number of Big 10 universities in the rankings.



  136. Scholarship winner attends Women in Ag summit

    Sandra Velleman and Alison Pullin at Women in Agribusiness Summit

    A student from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences was the first Ohio State student to apply and be awarded a scholarship for the Women in Agribusiness Summit. In the photo are Sandra Velleman, professor of animal sciences based on the Wooster campus, and Alison Pullin, animal sciences major. Her scholarship was sponsored by Novus International. The event took place in Chicago this September and included a tour of the Chicago Board of Trade and sessions ranging from "The race for the White House and What it Means for Agriculture" to "Strategies for Sustainability Across the Food Chain."

  137. iAgri gets shout out from Sen. Richard Lugar

    Former Indiana Senator Richard Lugar used the college's iAgri program as an example of excellence in a recent blog, writing, "We must strengthen foreign universities working on agriculture and increase the human and institutional capacity of universities in food insecure regions. Local scientists and teachers need to be able to respond to their own local conditions, train their own scientists, and share their knowledge globally. A consortium of six universities led by Ohio State (iAGRI) currently working in Tanzania represents a collaborative model that is working to build this local and institutional capacity."

    Another excerpt includes: "My own interest in food security began on a 604-acre farm in Indiana, which my father, Marvin Lugar, bought in the 1930s.  I still manage the farm, which today sits within the city limits of Indianapolis. Our planting began in May, and when all is done, we will have roughly 200 acres of corn and 200 acres of soybeans in the ground, to go with our acreage planted in Black walnut trees.  Our chances of a bumper crop year-to-year are excellent, given the astounding array of technologies that our farm and most of American agriculture uses to maximize yield and protect the environment.  Our farm is benefitting from genetically engineered seed, advancements in soil analysis, GPS mapping of the land, sophisticated weather forecasting, and numerous other technologies. In 2014, we set a record for corn yield at 192 bushels per acre.  This is roughly a fourfold increase from the yields we experienced on the same land when I was a boy.  At that time, my dad was pleased when we achieved even 50 bushels an acre."

    To see the blog: http://www.thelugarcenter.org/blog-we-need-a-21st-century-green-revolution-to-feed-the-world.

  138. Student enrollment exceeds 4,000

    Three students studying

    Enrollment in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences is holding steady, with 4,150 students for fall semester 2016.

    That number includes undergraduate and graduate students in the college, School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR), Agricultural Technical Institute and regional campuses, and comes from the university's official 15th day enrollment data. When compared with 2015:

    • Agriculture enrollment decreased by 15 students, or 0.8 percent
    • SENR enrollment increased by 38 students or 5.8 percent
    • ATI enrollment declined by 3.9 percent, from 751 to 722
    • Minority enrollment in agriculture dropped by 10.4 percent, from 193 to 173 students
    • Minority enrollment in SENR increased by 16.4 percent from 67 to 78 students
    • The number of new first year students enrolled directly in agricultue on the Columbus campus increased 6.5 percent, from 169 to 180 students
    • The number of new first year students enrolled directly in SENR increased 47.9 percent from 48 to 71 students
  139. Ohio Cooperative Development Center receives nearly $200,000 grant

    cooperative development center award

    USDA chose the South Centers at Piketon to announce this year's Rural Cooperative Development Grants on Oct. 3.

    Development centers can use RCDG funds for feasibility studies, strategic planning, leadership and operations training, and business plan development. Recipients are required to contribute matching funds that equal 25 percent of total project costs. 

    The Ohio Cooperative Development Center (OCDC) at South Centers is receiving a $199,984 grant to help businesses and individuals in rural Ohio and West Virginia explore cooperative opportunities in several industries, including energy and wood products.

    The Center also will provide a seed grant program to develop and expand cooperatives. It hopes to assist 20 businesses and eight start-ups. These efforts are projected to create or save 40 jobs. The Center has provided more than 2,900 hours of technical assistance since 2011, creating 194 jobs and retaining 229.

    In all, USDA announced 29 grants in 22 states totaling $5.8 million to help rural cooperatives create jobs and support business expansion. 

    "America's rural communities have incredible potential to create jobs and expand economic opportunities," Vilsack said in a press release. "Many rural businesses and organizations are succeeding under the cooperative business model, and with access to additional resources, they can boost job creation and create an environment where more products are made in rural America. The funding USDA is announcing today will provide the critical training and technical assistance rural cooperatives and non-profit groups need to help strengthen America's 'Main Street' businesses."

    Sam Rikkers, Administrator of USDA's Rural Business-Cooperative Service, announced the awardees in Piketon on Vilsack's behalf. 

    Pictured: Tony Logan, State Director, USDA Ohio Rural Development; Deborah Rausch, Rural Business and Cooperative Program Specialist, USDA Ohio Rural Development; Hannah Scott, Program Manager, Ohio Cooperative Development Center OSU South Centers; Dr. Tom Worley, Director, OSU South Centers; Sam Rikkers, Administrator, USDA Rural Development Rural Business-Cooperative Service.


  140. College exceeds "But For Ohio State" campaign goal

    Marching band spells "Thanks" at Buckeye football game

    The college exceeded its "But for Ohio State" campaign fundraising goal of $150 million, bringing in $154,780,237 from 32,875 donors. 

    Ohio State raised more than $3 billion from more than 750,000 donors, shattering the goal of $2.5 billion.

    “The support of Buckeye Nation is historic,” said President Michael V. Drake. “The generosity of our alumni and friends is changing lives and helping to elevate Ohio State as a nationally competitive flagship university. Our community and communities around the world will benefit for generations to come.”

    The campaign, which launched in 2009 and ended in September, raised more than $520 million for student scholarships and support. Campaign highlights:

    • $3,004,563,961 raised in total.
    • More than 39,000 student scholarships.
    • More than $852 million raised for faculty and academics, including 96 endowed chairs and professorships.
    • $1 billion raised for research.
    • But for Ohio State donors would fill Ohio Stadium seven times and there would be a very long line waiting to enter.



  141. 2016 Farm Science Review welcomed more than 125,000 visitors

    Photo of farmers watching harvest at Farm Science Review

    Sunny skies and warm temperatures ushered in strong attendance at the annual Farm Science Review held Sept. 20-22 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center near London, Ohio, which saw some 125,790 visitors over its three-day run.

    Sponsored by the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University, the Review offered farmers and growers a wonderful opportunity to learn about the latest agricultural research and innovation, said Matt Sullivan, superintendent of the Molly Caren center.

    Some 24,200 visitors attended the show Thursday (9/22), with 46,680 in attendance for Tuesday’s (9/20) opening day, while Wednesday (9/21) was the highest-attended day with 54,910 visitors, he said.

    “When you look at the overall Farm Science Review, we had the largest number of exhibitors ever, the weather was awesome, and we had great attendance,” Sullivan said. “Exhibitors’ feedback has also been very positive.

    “Our field demonstrations went extremely well, with the most corn and soybean combines that we’ve ever had at Farm Science Review. We’ve had an outstanding year installing field drainage, and we’ve generated some of the best corn and soybean yields we’ve ever had.”

    Sullivan said the educational programing offered at the Review by Ohio State University Extension was also very beneficial for farmers and growers.

    “From water quality to farm management to health and lifestyle improvements, the Review offered producers information that can benefit their overall financial bottom line,” he said. “Also, the Gwynn Conservation Center had a lot of visitors and offered new exhibits that were well received by attendees.

    “We look forward to the 2017 show.”

    Highlights of the review included:

    • An update on Zika in Ohio – While the mosquito known as the main carrier of Zika virus doesn’t live in Ohio, another carrier, the Asian tiger mosquito, is found in nearly half the state’s counties now. Those mosquitoes haven’t been found to have Zika, however.
    • Matt Roberts of Ohio State’s Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics led a discussion on the labeling of genetically modified foods from an economic perspective.
    • Roberts also provided a 2016 grain market update. He said that based on early harvest data, Ohio is on track to have a mediocre at best grain crop this year, while Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska and South Dakota are all forecast to have record grain yields.
    • Terry Howell and, posthumously, John Rockenbaugh, were inducted into the Farm Science Review Hall of Fame during the Celebration of CFAES luncheon.
    • An update on the College’s Field 2 Faucet water quality initiative, Ohio State’s program to ensure safe drinking water while sustaining an economically productive agricultural sector. The project includes information on research on water quality and nutrients, nutrient use efficiency for nitrogen and phosphorus, precision agriculture and compaction, and high-yield factors.
    • Information on the Ohio State–Beck’s Hybrids Joint Research Projects on Water Quality. The joint research projects are part of the Field to Faucet initiative, Beck’s Hybrids Practical Farm Research has a site on Rt. 40.
    • Early harvest results showed above-average yields for corn and soybeans from fields on the Farm Science Review grounds.

    The 2017 Farm Science Review will be held Sept. 19-21. For more information, go to fsr.osu.edu/.

  142. Food Science honors new Hall of Distinction inductees

    Photo of inductees into Food Science and Technology 2016 Hall of Distinction

    The Department of Food Science and Technology inducted three new members into its Hall of Distinction Sept. 30 during Homecoming festivities. Established in 2013, the Hall of Distinction seeks to recognize graduates and friends of the department at The Ohio State University who have made significant contributions to the food science and technology profession. Those inducted this  year include Patricia Brundige, Mark Sandridge and Joseph Soehnlen.

    Patricia Brundige attended Ohio State in the early 1960s with studies focused on Home Economics Education. She and her husband Thomas founded Total Ultimate Foods, Inc. The company provided premium dry mixes to the foodservice industry and became one of the leading manufacturers of dry food products in the industry. Ms. Brundige has been active with CFAES by supporting student scholarships, the department and the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H building fund, as well as participating in various 4-H activities and conferences.

    Mark Sandridge is a 1976 graduate of the college with a BS in Food Technology. Mark’s career has been with his family’s business, Sandridge Food Corporation, where he serves as chief executive officer. Sandridge Foods manufactures traditional comfort foods such as potato salad, macaroni salad and cole slaw, as well as a growing line of sauces, spices, salads, and protein. Their legacy brand, Grandma's, is now sold to over 80 different foodservice and retail businesses throughout the country.

    Joe Soehnlen graduated from Ohio State in 1960 with a BS in Dairy Technology. His career has been with the family business Superior Dairy. Under his direction as president, Superior Dairy is the largest independent fluid milk processor in Ohio. Superior has been at the forefront of developing new ways to process, package and deliver milk. In addition, Soehnlen has spent his career serving as an advocate for the dairy industry.

  143. Endowed chairs celebrated by university

    People clapping

    "Endowed chairs bring prestige to the work of our faculty, and help retain and attract outstanding talent to the University," wrote Bruce McPheron, executive vice president and provost of The Ohio State University, in an invitation to a celebration for endowed chairs and their donors on Sept. 29. Among those from the college who were recognized:

    • Linda C. Martin, Sanford G. Price and Isabelle P. Barbee Chair in Teaching, Advising and Learning
    • Ani L. Katchova, Farm Income Enhancement Chair in Agricultural Policy, Trade & Marketing
    • Michelle Jones, D.C. Kiplinger Chair in Floriculture
    • Steven J. Schwartz, Carl E. Haas Chair in Food Industries
    • Casey W. Hoy, W.K. Kellogg Foundation Endowed Chair in Ecological Management
    • Mark Partridge, C. William Swank Chair in Rural-Urban Policy
    • Keith L. Smith, George R. and Genevieve Gist Endowed Chair in OSU Extension
    • Ian Sheldon, Andersons Endowed Chair in Agricultural Marketing, Trade and Policy
    • Rafael Jimenez-Flores, J.T. “Stubby” Parker Chair in Dairy Foods
    • Richard Dick, The Ohio Eminent Scholar in Soil Ecology  
    • Larry Madden, Professorship in Plant Protection
    • Dennis R. Heldman, Dale A. Seiberling Professorship in Food Engineering
    • Ahmed E. Yousef, Virginia Hutchison Bazler and Frank E. Bazler Designated Professorship in Food Science
    • John Fulton, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering Professorship
    • Brian E. Roe, Fred N. VanBuren Professorship in Farm Management
  144. CFAES represented at 2016 World Food Prize Event

    Norman Borlaug in wheat field

    Five faculty, students, and scholars from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) attended the 2016 Borlaug Dialogue International Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa, where the annual World Food Prize was awarded on October 13th. Also attending were 11 Ohio high school students and their Ohio State organizer.

    Representing Ohio State were Dr. Thaddeus Ezeji, Associate Professor in the Department of Animal Sciences; Sega Ndao, Visiting Scholar in the Department of Animal Sciences; Dr. Rafiq Islam, Research Scientist and Leader of the Soil and Bioenergy Program at OSU South Centers Research Station; Dr. Nataliia Didenko, Visiting Scholar at OSU South Centers; and Irene Kargbo, Ph.D. student in the Department of Entomology.

    They attended through federally-funded programs administered by CFAES' Office of International Programs in Agriculture.

    Ndao and Didenko attended as Fellows of the 2016 Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship Program – a distinguished program funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service that supports 3 month research fellowships at a U.S. land grant university and seeks to strengthen ties between scientists in the U.S. and international partnering institutions. Both Ndao, who is a researcher with the Senegalese Agricultural Research Institute and advised by Dr. Ezeji, and Didenko, who serves as a researcher at the Institute of Water Problems and Land Reclamation in Ukraine and is advised by Dr. Islam, will be at Ohio State throughout the Autumn semester.

    Kargbo, who is on leave from the Central Agricultural Research Institute in Monrovia, Liberia for her Ph.D Program at Ohio State, is a Fellow in the Borlaug Higher Education for Agricultural Research and Development (BHEARD) Program, and attended with other BHEARD fellows from a small, selected contingent.

    Held concurrently with the Borlaug Symposium is the Global Youth Institute – a forum designed for exceptional high school students from across the United States and other countries to present their findings and solutions to international experts and their peers, tour cutting-edge industrial and research facilities, and take part in symposium discussions with global leaders in science, industry, and policy. Sally McClaskey, 4-H Program Manager in Ohio State Extension and organizer of the Ohio Youth Institute, a subsidiary of the Global Youth Institute that is convened by CFAES, accompanied 11 Ohio high school students who participated in the Ohio Youth Institute at Ohio State University in March 2016.



  145. Hall Receives Excellence in Ag Law Award

    Peggy Hall photo

    The American Agricultural Law Association (AALA) has honored Peggy Kirk Hall with its Excellence in Agricultural Law Award for Academia during the annual symposium in Oklahoma City on October 6 through 8.  The award recognizes AALA members for outstanding contributions to the legal profession and the agricultural community.  

    “Peggy has been a long time member of AALA, serving in a variety of ways, including President, presenter, moderator, committee member and in almost every capacity that AALA has called upon her for service,” said Beth Crocker, President of the AALA.  “Peggy encourages thoughtful discussion no matter which group she is working with and clearly demonstrates her ongoing commitment to the agriculture community and legal profession based upon the amount of time and energy she puts into all of her activities.”

    Hall currently serves as an Assistant Professor teaching agribusiness law in the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at Ohio State University.  She is a Field Specialist in the OSU Extension Agricultural & Resource Law Program conducting research and outreach on legal issues affecting agriculture, rural land use and resource development.  Hall also partners with the National Agricultural & Food Law Consortium, a four-university partnership with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, National Agricultural Library, designed to enhance and expand the delivery of objective agricultural and food law research and information to the nation's agricultural community.   

    Hall is a graduate of Ohio State University (B.S., M.S., Natural Resource Policy), and completed her Juris Doctorate degree from Wyoming College of Law focusing on agricultural and natural resource law.   Hall is a faculty Senator in OSU’s University Senate, has served as President of the AALA, Chair of the Ohio State Bar Association Agricultural Law Committee and is on the Advisory Board for the National Agricultural Law Center. Hall and her family live in central Ohio where they own and operate a grain farm in Union County.

    The American Agricultural Law Association is a national membership association of agricultural law professionals from across the United States focusing on the legal needs of the agricultural community.   Excellence in Agricultural Law Awards were also presented to Mike Traxinger of South Dakota, and David LeBas of Texas.

  146. College brochure earns top award

    AwardThe "Ohio State ATI Pennant" brochure was named the winner of the "Multimedia & Promotional Materials Division - Specialty Items/Give-aways" category of the Projects and Publications awards in June during the National Agricultural Alumni and Development Association (NAADA) national conference hosted by the University of Idaho,

    The piece was art directed by Kim Brown, designed by Camilla Dorinsky, and edited by Heather Gates, all from CFAES Marketing and Communications.

    The brochure is used by Ohio State ATI Admissions Staff to recruit prospective students. 

  147. Impact of International Programs shown in 2017 annual report

    Valene Alvarez in Nicaragua

    If you want to find out about the global impact CFAES has on the world, just take a look at the new annual report released by International Programs in Agriculture (IPA).

    International Programs helps the college address food security, environmental sustainability and health and wellness on a global scale by working with faculty, researchers, and students at Ohio State and at partner institutions around the world.

    From assisting with study abroad opportunities for CFAES undergraduates to implementing degree programs for international graduate students, IPA helps prepare the future workforce by offering an international perspective.

    IPA promotes global opportunities within the college, with an emphasis on the developing world, by:

    • assisting faculty and researchers with the submission and administration of international grants and contracts,
    • managing short-term scientific exchange programs for international visitors and scientists,
    • supporting recruitment efforts for the Peace Corps on Ohio State’s campus,
    • coordinating the writing and approval of memoranda of understanding between college units and international institutions,
    • guiding the placement of international students in internships within the private sector.

    Among IPA’s 2017 accomplishments:

    • 19 Distinguished International Scholars hosted through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Scientific Exchange Programs
    • 412 international interns and trainees placed from 40 countries
    • 31 international agreements with institutions in 19 different countries
    • 6th ranked U.S. institution in number of alums serving as active Peace Corps volunteers
    • 219 international students enrolled in CFAES



  148. SEEDS program leverages $147 M for research, report shows

    The agriculture industry increasingly links with other industries to take on common challenges in key areas such as food production and security, energy and the environment, and health and wellness. These industries rely on researchers to further their goals and create new opportunities. The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences’s (CFAES) SEEDS program supports innovative and interdisciplinary research that can be applied to industry and the community on a global scale.

    Each year, CFAES researchers are invited to participate in the SEEDS program, an internal competition for funding. Since the program was established in 1996, SEEDS has been addressing the challenges and opportunities of Ohio’s agbioscience industry. By fostering high-quality research among scientists, SEEDS enables these scientists to collect the preliminary data needed to give them a competitive edge in national programs and provides them with leverage to attract industry support.

    Agbioscience: the integration of scientific disciplines to address critical needs of food security, safety and health; environmental sustainability; and biobased energy, fuel and products.

    In FY 2017, the three faculty competitions were overhauled to meet the changing needs of CFAES. The SEEDS Early Career Investigator grants are designed to provide resources to untenured, tenure-track faculty who have been employed for less than six years. These faculty members have an opportunity to develop new methods, explore new, innovative areas of research, and generate the preliminary data needed to prepare for competitive extramural proposals. A total of 41 percent of the proposals submitted were funded in FY 2018.

    The former Interdisciplinary competition became the SEEDS Team Science Competition, allowing for additional collaboration within CFAES departments. This competition rewards proposals that generate new, innovative research in emerging areas central to the CFAES mission. It is expected that this competition will encourage the development of new scholarly teams among faculty from diverse disciplines. In FY 2018, three proposals were funded out of 12 submitted (25 percent).

    The Partnership Competition, which replaced the Industry Small and Matching Competitions, focuses on collaboration with industry and non-profit foundations or other non-traditional sources of funding. The Partnership Competition allows for researchers to develop productive relationships with industry and community partners, engage in innovative research, generate additional support for their research programs, and promote technology transfer between the University and partner. In FY 2018 this competition had a 50 percent funding rate.

    SEEDS also provides grant opportunities for CFAES students. Both the graduate and undergraduate research programs prepare students for research career paths and encourage the creation of close student-faculty mentoring. In FY 2018, 23 student proposals were funded out of 51 submitted (45 percent).

    As we approach the 20th anniversary of the SEEDS program in 2018, SEEDS grants have supported research projects of $25,768,180 and have received more than $147,891,061 in matching and extramural funding – a return of $5.77 for each dollar invested. Overall, the SEEDS program funds 32 percent of faculty submitted applications.

    To read more about previously funded projects, you can download the 2017 SEEDS Report of Progress or view the 2017 SEEDS grant recipients at https://grants.cfaes.ohio-state.edu/seeds/seeds-awards. Please direct any questions about the SEEDS program to Melissa Burant, burant.2@osu.edu. - By Melissa Burant


  149. Carignan receives university's distinguished staff award

    Ben Carignan, CFAES academic counselor, received Ohio State’s Distinguished Staff Award May 4.

    According to his nominator Susan Sheller, CFAES office associate, Carignan has provided unique events and opportunities to military members and veterans in the college, and has made transitions smooth for students coming to the college from Ohio State ATI or another branch campus.

    Carignan organized and led the first CFAES recognition program for CFAES military and veteran students, faculty, and staff in November 2016. He supervises the student who serves as the CFAES Veteran Community Advocate, one of only three such positions in the university.

    Carignan helped coordinate a 2017 event that featured multiple Veteran Association organizations (known as a VA Mobile Unit) in CFAES for all Ohio State students, the first event of its kind on campus.

    He initiated the development of the CFAES Military and Veteran Student Career Development Program with the CFAES Career Development Coordinator and Veteran Community Advocate. The result was a networking event following the CFAES Spring 2018 Career Fair for military and veteran students.

    Carignan oversees and leads the campus change process for all CFAES students planning to transition to the Columbus campus. He initiated a new tracking method in partnership with regional campus advisors to establish communication between students, departments, colleges, and Columbus campus offices.

    He assisted in writing the “Ohio State ATI Transition Student Management” document which outlines the campus change process for ATI students. It enables these students to learn how to make early connections with people on main campus regarding advising, research opportunities, study abroad experiences, and student club activities. He also assisted in developing a workshop at ATI for students planning to transition to Columbus.

    The Distinguished Staff Award annually honors 12 individuals for their outstanding achievements, service, leadership, and dedication to The Ohio State University. The Distinguished Staff Award is the highest honor bestowed upon staff at the university since its inception in 1984.

    Award recipients were honored May 4 for their outstanding leadership, accomplishments, and service to Ohio State.


  150. AEDE welcomes new professor

    Hu Wuyang photo

    “Applied economists are concerned with more than just numbers and economic theory,” says new AEDE Professor Wuyang Hu.  “Many of us are interested in solving real-life problems and making a difference on an individual level.”
    A fitting philosophy for a professor and researcher whose work over the past 20 years has kept him focused on food-related issues where the environment, economics and society intersect.
    Hu recently joined The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences as part of the university’s Initiative for Food and AgriCultural Transformation (InFACT).   Hu comes to OSU from the University of Kentucky’s Department of Agricultural Economics where he served as the H. B. Price Endowed Professor and Principal Investigator of the University’s Food Systems Innovation Center. Along with his arrival, Hu brings his editorship of the Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics.
    Hu feels AEDE is the ideal department for him to work with colleagues to tackle issues that affect individuals and society as there is ample in-house support and exiting research on food systems, sustainable food production and consumer economics.  Hu explains that decisions affecting the environment, agriculture and economics influence each other.  Agriculture is a complex system and it makes sense for producers to adopt new technologies or practices to save water and use less pesticides, but we also need to make sure the environmental benefit they create is known to the society.
    “Society in turn should reward such stewardship, and, importantly, producers should be assured to receive the reward,” shares Hu.  “This is a way to ensure the very concept of sustainability is sustainable in reality.  I want to be that facilitator to allow the system to flow as smoothly as possible.” Hu adds
    Hu has a wide range of experience teaching agricultural and applied economics and is looking forward to working with students when his teaching schedule commences later in the spring of 2018.  Hu says the learning occurs both ways in his class: he learns from his students as much as the students may learn from him.
    “Students have new ideas and we can gain a lot from their new generation of thinking,” says Hu. “It is a privilege to witness a student growing in wisdom, experience and knowledge.”
    The university’s Discovery Themes initiative influenced Hu’s decision to come to Ohio State. He added that he is looking forward to working with the varied colleagues and students to translate new thought into practical solutions. – Kelli Trinoskey

  151. Extension partners with State Climate Office of Ohio

    The new State Climate Office of Ohio (SCOO) will expand access to agricultural weather and data. It serves as the steward of climate data and education, research and outreach for Ohioans and includes a team of researchers, educators, climatologists and meteorologists with more than 25 years of experience and expertise from Ohio State’s Department of Geography and the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center (BPCRC).

    “Having access to accurate climate information is critical for farmers, regional planners, policy makers and all sectors of Ohio’s economy,” said Bryan Mark, professor of geography and Ohio’s new state climatologist. “It directly impacts quality of life, health, food and water security.”

    In 2016, Mark started as Ohio’s state climatologist and immediately began assembling a team of weather and climate experts to help broaden his mission to connect Ohioans with transformative climate information. Though historically the state climatologist has been a volunteer position held by a member of the geography faculty, growing concerns about climate impact underscored the need for a more comprehensive effort to gather, prepare and disseminate information and engage the public in education and training.

    The new SCOO team includes Jim DeGrand, assistant state climatologist and senior researcher, Department of Geography; Jason Cervenec, education and outreach director, BPCRC; Aaron Wilson, senior research associate, BPCRC-OSU Extension; Andy Londo, assistant director, agriculture and natural resources, OSU Extension; Steve Quiring, professor of geography and atmospheric sciences; Wesley Haines, alumnus and meteorologist; and Jeff Rogers, professor emeritus of geography, and former Ohio state climatologist.

    “With this new office, we will greatly expand our agricultural weather outreach, enhance reporting of key data to individual farmers, planners and local officials, and mobilize resources on campus, across the state and within the region to address climate change in Ohio,” said Mark.

    According to Mark, a significant amount of meteorological and climatological data is available, but it is not tailored to the needs of public and private stakeholders nor is it available on an intuitive and applicable platform for farmers, resource managers and policy makers to utilize effectively. A new grant is about to change that. 

    In December, Mark was awarded $45,000 from OSU Extension, in the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, and Ohio State’s Office of Energy and Environment and Office of Outreach and Engagement to develop a web-based climate data portal and decision design tools, create a strong network of campus and statewide partners and a more reliable and accurate network of climate stations, and expand outreach to a larger agricultural audience. 

    “This grant will lead to a multiplatform prototype tool consisting of the FARM (Fertilizer Application and Resource Monitor) mobile and web app and climate database,” Mark explained. “This tool will provide farmers with the real-time weather and climate information needed to assess and plan field applications, better comply with state regulations and reduce nutrient runoff to streams.”

    SCOO’s continued vitality depends on the strength of its connections with diverse stakeholders across the state, including those in health, food and water security, emergency management and agriculture. They have already forged strong relationships that are yielding positive impacts. 

    One such relationship is with OSU Extension, a statewide network with a presence in all 88 counties in Ohio that links communities, businesses and the general population to intensive research and development resources of Ohio State. 

    “The partnership between OSU Extension and SCOO provides invaluable guidance to farmers,” said Ken Martin, associate director of programs and department chair of OSU Extension. “We coordinate drought and flood monitoring that directly impacts the agricultural cycle; we are working to develop a streamlined approach to collecting field soil conditions that will aid in the creation and dissemination of drought and precipitation information across Ohio.”

    What will be the impact of climate variability on our economy, food security, natural resources, energy infrastructure, health and well-being? What are the chances and potential manifestations of extreme floods and droughts? How can Ohioans build resilience to actual and future climate disruptions? The State Climate Office of Ohio, under Bryan Mark’s leadership, hopes to be a leader in climate data stewardship to ensure a healthy and growing agricultural community of Ohio. 

  152. Reporters interview new CFAES Dean Cathann Kress

    CFAES Dean Cathann Kress

    Cathann Kress, incoming dean and vice president for agricultural administration, met with reporters during a recent visit to campus.

    Kress, who will begin her new duties May 1, told reporters she was "thrilled to be joining a great community of people and scholars. The college has a tremendous opportunity to lead in the grand challenges of the day."

    Food security is one of those grand challenges, Kress said. Because of the breadth and depth found at Ohio State, "We are uniquely positioned to address the entire food supply chain with a multi-disciplinary approach," she said. Another key issue is future leadership in agriculture and making sure people understand the full range of careers that are possible with degrees from CFAES, Kress said. Improving communications with consumers and providing a better understanding of the science behind agriculture is another important issue, she said.

    Reporters attending the event included J.D. Malone, The Columbus Dispatch; Andrew Flinn, Brownfield Network; Susan Crowell, Farm and Dairy; Dave Russell, freelancer; and Joe Cornely, Ohio Farm Bureau.


  153. Free Trees From Chadwick and City of Columbus

    Girls planting tree

    OSU’s Chadwick Arboretum & Learning Gardens is partnering with the City of Columbus in its Branch Out Columbus program to help plant 300,000 trees in and around the city over five years. Register now to get up to two free sapling trees for your yard. A total of 400 trees will be available to the Ohio State community to be picked up on April 14. Fill out the information below and send it to Christina Voise by April 10 at cdvoise@gmail.com.

    The tree pickup location will be south of the Nationwide 4H Center at 2201 Fred Taylor Drive. Follow the driveway behind the center to reach the pickup site. There will be free planting demonstrations at the pickup site and free parking passes for those who want to watch a demo. They will also be passing out $5.00 coupons for Chadwick’s Spring Plant Sale, which takes place May 11–13, 2017. And as always, before you plant your trees – CALL BEFORE YOU DIG so underground utilities can be marked. At least 48 hours before you plant your tree, call the Ohio Utilities Protection Service at 1-800-362-2764 or submit a request online at http://www.oups.org/edig.


    Street Address:

    City/Zip Code:

    Email address:

    Pickup time – choose one of the following for April 14 pickup

    o   3 – 3:30 PM

    o   3:30 – 4 PM

    o   4 – 4:30 PM

    o   4:30 – 5 PM

    o   5 – 5:30 PM

    o   5:30 – 6 PM

    o   6 – 6:30 PM

    o   6:30 – 7 PM

    Tree species and number (up to two trees per household). All tree species will attain a large size and need to be planted in an appropriate location. We will offer 100 of each species on a first come, first served basis.

    sugar maple ___     white oak ___     swamp white oak ___      tuliptree ___             

    A limited number of protective wire cages will be available to protect trees from deer and lawnmower damage. We will use your street address to add the tree to the City’s Tree Canopy Planner (your name will not be used and your information will not be shared). And in six months, we may email you to ask how your tree is doing.



  154. Building Ohio State One Log at a Time

    More than 100 people crowded onto the 11th floor of the Thompson Library Feb. 1 for the opening of the new exhibit Building Ohio State: From Forest to the Renovation of Thompson Library.

    Close to the heart of all Buckeyes, the exhibit, which runs from February 1 to May 14, features the use of white oak trees in the Thompson Library design. White oak (Quercus alba) has been the main design feature for the library since the library was originally built, just as the university’s history has always been rich in forest conservation.

    Construction on the library first began in 1907, when only 10 percent of Ohio was forested; 85 percent less than in 1788. The library would later open to students in 1913 with Ohio’s very own white oak as the primary feature. As with many of Ohio State’s buildings, this was not the only construction the library ever saw. The stacks were added on and completed in 1950, minor upgrades took place in 1970, and then from 2006 to 2009 the library went through a massive renovation.

    Behind this new look was George Acock, the Founder and President of Acock Associates Architects. Growing up in the home of an artist, Acock had a creative mind and fine eye for detail. He wanted to turn the Thompson Library, which is the only building on Ohio State’s campus to ever be placed on the oval, into a source of pride for the university.

    Acock wished to remain true to the tradition of quarter-sawn white oak as the primary feature in the library and expand upon this design. White oak exemplifies warmth, strength and a contemporary feel that Acock believed was essential to the building’s grandeur. It also has history and tells a story. His admiration towards this specific type of wood is shared by Adam Conway, President of Superior Hardwoods of Ohio, Inc. and Vice President of the Ohio Forestry Association, who supplied all of the wood for the Thompson Library project.

    Adam Conway grew up in Southern Ohio in the hardwood lumber business. His grandfather, who was a forest ranger and ran a Christmas Tree Farm, once told him to “pay attention to the details; the big picture will take care of itself.” Luckily for George Acock, this is exactly what Conway did. After cutting down a massive 324-year-old white oak tree in 2005 that had been damaged in an ice storm, Conway decided the tree was too beautiful to be overlooked. He brought a piece of the tree to Acock, and this is when Conway first discovered Acock’s plan to renovate Ohio State’s Thompson Library, which required 60,000 board feet of wood.

    The Grand Reading Room has been a symbol of the library since its original opening and is filled with tables made of solid, quarter sawn white oak, as are the custom lights on each table. All of the bookcases and furniture are made with white oak; even the walls in the atrium are clad with white oak to make a statement. Much of the white oak used in the original arches was able to be refinished and reused.

    As for the tree that first put Conway in Acock’s path, it was custom cut and used in the flooring of the library, less than 10 miles from where it had stood for centuries: Ohio wood for an Ohio project.

    The rest of the wood came from Ohio’s Zaleski State Forest, which is where Conway’s grandfather had been a forest ranger many years before. He may have touched the very trees his grandson so carefully chose to be displayed in the Thompson Library years later.


    – By Katerina Sharp, third-year ag comm student


  155. College hires Discovery Themes faculty

    Slide that says Discovery Themes with three pictures

    Ohio State launched the Discovery Themes initiative to position the university to tackle the world’s grand challenges in eight areas of focus within the four Discovery Themes: Humanities and the Arts, Health and Wellness, Food Production and Security, and Energy and Environment. The college has faculty leading three of the areas of focus: Casey Hoy, Initiative for Food and Agricultural Transformation; Elena Irwin, Sustainable and Resilient Economy; and Mark Failla, Foods for Health. Discovery Themes funding is expected to allow for an 8 percent to 10 percent net increase in the tenured/tenure-track faculty.

    The college is benefitting from the increase in Discovery Themes faculty. By August 2017, the college will have 28 new faculty serving in five of the areas of focus. To date, 15 faculty have joined the college with nine units having one or more of the new Discovery Themes faculty. Of those new hires, 53 percent are from underrepresented populations. The 15 new faculty along with a description of their work are highlighted below.

    Ingrid Adams
    PhD: Iowa State University, Ames Iowa.

    I am an Extension Specialist in Food, Health, and Human Behavior with a dual appointment in the Department of Extension in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and the Division of Medical Dietetics in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences.

    My research interests include the development of evidence-based, critical thinking programs and practices related to food security and health of individuals and communities; and understanding and decreasing health disparities among underserved and minority populations (African Americans, Hispanics, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders).

    Leah Bevis
    PhD: Cornell University (Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management) in the spring of 2016.

    My research focuses on linkages between human welfare and biophysical systems in poor countries --- for instance, I'm examining the role of soil fertility in shaping smallholder farmer productivity, and how soil minerals drive crop minerals and human micronutrient malnutrition. I also examine intergenerational income, education, and health transmission, a subject key to understanding socio-economic mobility in the US and abroad. I plan to continue work in both of these areas in the near future, perhaps expanding to new work regarding poverty in the US, and collaborating with nutritionists and crop scientists at OSU as I continue research on food systems and development.

    Yongyang Cai
    PhD: Computational and Mathematical Engineering in 2010 from Stanford University. Prior to joining Ohio State, Senior Research Scientist at the Becker Friedman Institute, University of Chicago, and a Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

    I am an associate professor in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics. My current research focuses on dynamic stochastic integration of climate and the economy, as well as decision making under uncertainty in environmental and resource economics.

    Scott Demyan
    PhD:  University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany in 2013. I continued to work there as a post doc before coming to OSU.

    I will be starting at OSU as an assistant professor in the area of soil and environmental mineralogy with a focus on carbon permanence. I intend to pursue research in the areas of soil organic matter and mineral stabilization mechanisms, inorganic carbon dynamics, and ex situ mineral carbonation as a sequestration method.

    John Fulton
    PhD: University of Kentucky; on faculty at Auburn University for 10.5 years before joining the Ohio State faculty ranks.

    Research focuses on machinery automation and digital agriculture with efforts around collecting field level data and synthesizing to drive farm decisions.

    Emmanuel Hatzakis (Emmanouil Chatzakis in Ohio State directory)
    PhD: Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy/food analysis in 2007 at the University of Crete in Greece and before coming to Ohio State was the NMR Director in Pennsylvania State University.

    Assistant Professor at the department of Food Science and Technology at The Ohio State University. Research interests include applications of liquid and solid state NMR Spectroscopy in Food Science and Nutrition. Developing novel analytical tools for food evaluation and applying NMR spectroscopy for the discovery and characterization of compounds with high commercial and nutritional value that can be produced from low cost sources, such as food industry waste.

    Douglas Jackson-Smith
    PhD: University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1995, worked as a faculty member at the UW until 2001, then spent the last 15 years at Utah State University.

    I am trained as a sociologist, and will be working to integrate social science perspectives into interdisciplinary research on complex Ag-Food-Water puzzles. Among other topics, I will be exploring social, economic, and policy drivers of behaviors by farmers and other actors that shape water quality outcomes in Ohio and the Great Lakes Region. I am keen to draw attention to the social dimensions of sustainability when assessing food and agricultural systems. I will continue to promote more participatory and collaborative models that engage key actors and stakeholders in designing, implementing, and interpreting scientific research.

    Margaret Kalcic
    PhD: Purdue University in 2013, in Ecological Sciences and Engineering, and the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering.  Most recently I completed a 3-year postdoc at the University of Michigan, in the Graham Sustainability Institute (2013-2016).

    New assistant professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering. Research is in the area of watershed hydrology with a particular focus on water quality in agricultural regions. One main goal is to provide producers in the western Lake Erie watersheds, as well as their advisors, information that encourages adoption of appropriate conservation measures to tackle Lake Erie’s nutrient goals. This involves not only scientific and modeling challenges, but engaging stakeholders and working across disciplines in the social sciences, economics, and policy domains.

    Scott Kenney
    PhD: Microbiology & Immunology from the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine. Comes to Ohio State after completing postdoctoral research in the laboratory of XJ Meng at Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University (Virginia Tech).

    The Kenney lab focuses on the molecular virology of positive stranded RNA viruses, setting up reverse genetics systems to manipulate the viral genome, creating targeted mutations and observing the effects of mutations on the virus lifecycle in cell culture and on pathogenesis within the host. The lab is currently focusing on mechanisms of cross species transmission of hepatitis E virus (HEV) along with factors contributing to enhanced mortality of HEV and Zika virus during pregnancy.

    Daniela Miteva
    PhD: Duke University (NC) in 2013. Prior to coming to Ohio State, was a postdoctoral associate at the Nature Conservancy.

    I am an environmental economist working on conservation and sustainability issues in developing countries. Combining a microeconomic framework with theory and tools from ecology and biogeography, my research focuses on understanding the drivers of landscape change, quantifying the impacts on ecosystems and human welfare, and evaluating policies like protected areas and Forest Sustainability Council (FSC) certification. In terms of my research, my most high-profile one currently is a multi-country effort I am leading; the goal is to provide consistent evidence of the effectiveness of common native forest conservation interventions in the Tropics.

    Tony Parker
    PhD: James Cook University in Queensland, Australia. I was employed at James Cook University’s School of Veterinary and Biomedical Science before coming to Ohio State.

    The position that I have been employed to undertake is in Sustainable Animal Agriculture. My research interests cover a broad range of animal species but have largely focused on ruminant animals in extensive and intensive production systems. Many factors can impact the sustainability of animal agriculture. An initial approach I have taken is to investigate the health and welfare of grazing ruminants in Ohio.

    Devin Peterson
    PhD: University of Minnesota, I was also a Professor at the University of Minnesota prior to coming to Ohio State.

    My research efforts focus on food flavor and related chemistry, with emphasis on identification of flavor stimuli (taste, aroma, chemesthetic, mouthfeel), characterization of flavor formation/degradation pathways, and mechanisms of flavor delivery. In general, my research program strives to understand, on a molecular level, drivers that influence food acceptability and govern food choice, ultimately to support health and wellness initiatives. As part of our research platform, we use metabolomic-based analytical methods (flavoromics) to advance our understanding of the complex chemical sensation, flavor perception.

    Jonathan Fresnedo Ramirez
    PhD: University of California, Davis in 2014. Prior to joining Ohio State, I worked in the Institute of Biotechnology at Cornell University. 

    I have been hired to pursue research on plant domestication and germplasm improvement of outcrossing species. I am interested in the use of genetics, omics and engineering for the domestication and optimal genetic improvement of new and neglected crops, which may be used for the sustainable and resilient production of biomaterials.

    Nicole Sintov
    PhD: University of Southern California, Dept. of Psychology. Before joining Ohio State, worked as assistant professor of research at USC Price School of Public Policy.

    Now Assistant Professor of Behavior, Decision-Making, and Sustainability in the School of Environment and Natural Resources. As an environmental psychologist, research focuses on intervening with human behavior and understanding the processes of behavior change, particularly with respect to the human interface in smart energy systems and wildlife crime.

    Anastasia Vlasova
    DVM: Moscow State Academy of Veterinary Medicine and Biotechnology, Moscow, Russia, 2000, Biotechnology/Biochemistry; Ivanovsky Institute for Virology, RAMS, Moscow, Russia, Ph.D., 2004,  Virology, Molecular Epidemiology; 2009, Postdoctoral researcher, Virology, Immunology, The Ohio State University, OARDC, FAHRP, Wooster, OH.

    My research is focused on the pathogenesis, epidemiology and immunity to enteric viruses including corona- (CoVs) and rotaviruses (RVs). Rotavirus is the leading cause of childhood diarrhea and mortality worldwide and an important pathogen in young animals; while CoVs represent a continuous public health threat evidenced by recent transboundary spread and pandemics of animal (porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, deltacoronavirus) and human (severe acute respiratory syndrome CoV, SARS-CoV, and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome CoV, MERS-CoV) CoVs.

  156. Two college faculty members serve as mentors for university-wide program

    Ann Christy, professor in Engineering and Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering, and Susie Whittington, professor in Agricultural Communications, Education and Leadership, are among 20 faculty members serving as mentors in The University Institute for Teaching and Learning.

    President Michael V. Drake has called for the university to "be as regarded for world class teaching and leaning as it is for research."

    Christy and Whittington's roles are to work with new faculty within the Institute's first initiative, "Faculty FIT: Foundation, Impact, Tranformation" program, because they are recognized as exceptional teachers.

    New faculty participants were introduced to the program during a fall event that featured sessions on evidence-based teaching, instructional resources and creating professional development plans. During the year, events will include course design and online teaching workshops; roundtables and panel discussions; lectures by national experts on teaching; and one-on-one teaching consultations with staff from the University Center for the Advancement of Teaching (UCAT) — all capped by the 2017 Innovate conference, Academy of Teaching conference and Patterson Lecture.

  157. Ohio State launches new Sustainability Institute

    Motivated to improve complex sustainability challenges, Ohio State has established a new Sustainability Institute, which merges the Office of Energy and Environment and the Sustainable and Resilient Economy Discovery Theme. The institute will support and integrate sustainability and resilience research, teaching, and outreach activities across Ohio State, said Gina Langen, the institute’s communications director, and more than 30 CFAES faculty are involved with it—as part of its leadership team, as engaged faculty, or both—led by Elena Irwin, Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, who is the institute’s faculty director. See a full list of the institute’s people.

    Through the new institute, Ohio State “will pursue a more coordinated and inclusive approach to sustainability that facilitates interdisciplinary collaboration, campus stewardship, and applied solutions,” Langen said. “Our interdisciplinary research capacity, culture of problem solving, and partnerships with industry, government, and advocacy organizations offer strategic opportunities to create transformational change.”

    Find out more.

  158. Register for Land-Grant Diversity Conference

    CFAES faculty and staff are invited to attend the 15th annual National Land-Grant Diversity Conference (formerly the Tri-State Diversity Conference), set for Feb. 6–8 in Hebron, Kentucky, near Cincinnati. The theme of the event is “Do the Right Thing: Transforming Diversity.” The program includes keynote speaker Dionardo Pizaña of Michigan State University Extension and capnote speaker Bleuzette Marshall of the University of Cincinnati Office of Equity & Inclusion.

    Find details on the conference’s website. Register here.

  159. CFAES honors its outstanding researchers

    Here’s who won the 2018 Junior Faculty, Senior Faculty, Innovator and Krauss research awards.

    On April 27, CFAES honored the following faculty members, who were announced as the winners of the college’s annual awards for outstanding research. The presentations were made during an afternoon session at the CFAES Annual Research Conference. The conference was held on the Wooster campus.

    Leah McHale, Distinguished Junior Faculty Research Award

    Leah McHale is an associate professor in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science based on the Columbus campus. She joined the department in 2009 as an assistant professor and was promoted in 2015. Her research areas are soybean breeding and genetics and genetics of disease resistance and quality. McHale has a nationally recognized program focusing on the characterization and manipulation of natural variation in crop plants, primarily soybean and chili peppers. Her research goal is to identify the genes conferring disease resistance, yield and quality traits, and in soybean, to examine how best to integrate these alleles for the development of improved varieties. To accomplish these goals, she uses new technologies and a cross-disciplinary approach, including genetics and genomics, evolutionary studies, bioinformatics, and plant pathology.

    McHale has successfully funded her research program using grants from state and national agencies. Since coming to Ohio State, she has received $33 million in funding. She currently has eight active grants. She has produced over 40 peer-reviewed publications, 34 since her hire by CFAES, and has 69 other publications such as abstracts and papers in proceedings. She has served on 29 MS and PhD student advisory committees in addition to her own students. McHale has completed five graduate students, supervises three PhD students, and advised 19 undergraduate student research projects, many of whom were recognized with awards and grants.

    McHale’s contribution to soybean research at the state and national levels is widely recognized. She has released nine soybean public cultivars. Tom Fontana, director of research and education, Ohio Soybean Council, describes McHale as a “very important member of the soybean research team at Ohio State, and we have supported her financially since her arrival. She has reinvigorated the soybean breeding program by releasing new varieties of food grade and non-GMO soybeans and developing varieties to meet new opportunities for soy foods, which are an important specialty market for Ohio’s farmers.”

    The award consists of a plaque and $1,000 for McHale and $3,000 added to the operating expense account of her research program for one year.

    David Mackey, Distinguished Senior Faculty Research Award

    David Mackey is a professor in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science based on the Columbus campus. He serves as associate director of the Center for Applied Plant Sciences (CAPS). He joined the department in 2002, was promoted in 2009 to associate professor and was promoted again in 2015. His research areas are plant molecular biology, function of the plant immune system, action of pathogen-derived virulence factors, role of RIN4 in plant immune responses, structure of the plant defense network supporting cell wall fortification, and modification of maize metabolism by a bacterial pathogen.

    Mackey has led an innovative interdisciplinary research program exploring crop physiological, biochemical, and genetic factors that promote susceptibility or induce resistance to economically significant bacterial diseases. Using Arabidopsis and sweet corn model systems, he and his colleagues have delineated mechanisms by which AvrE virulence factors produced by bacterial pathogens overcome plant protective response mechanisms by redirecting plant metabolism away from producing compounds that confer disease immunity. Understanding how AvrE factors affect plants at the cellular and organelle level may offer a greater array of plant and pathogen metabolic targets that could be exploited to improve crop resistance to bacterial diseases resulting in economic stability and greater food security worldwide.

    Mackey has conducted his research in collaboration with colleagues internally, externally, nationally, and internationally. He has been Principle Investigator (PI) for nearly $3.5 million and co-PI of over $1 million in grants; has had 43 invitations to present his work nationally and internationally; has served on 29 committees reviewing grant proposals; and has published 47 refereed articles cited over 4,100 times. Mackey is associate editor of six journals and is a frequent peer reviewer for 26 journals. He has advised eight PhD and two MS students and has been a member of the Student Advisory Committee of 24 additional PhD candidates and three MS students, many of whom have received numerous awards and acquired tenure-track positions at universities, appointments as medical research professionals, or posts in private industry.

    The award consists of a plaque and $1,000 for Mackey and $3,000 added to the operating expense account of his research program for one year.

    V.M. Balasubramaniam, Innovator of the Year Award

    V.M. Balasubramaniam is a professor in the Department of Food Science and Technology based in Columbus. He was selected for his research on developing creative High Pressure Based Clean Process Technology Development for Healthy Processed Foods as well as entrepreneurial efforts in subsequent technology transfer into industrial practice. Consumers seek food and beverages that are healthier, so meeting the growing demand for processed foods with substantiated health benefits is a major challenge. Development of cost-effective, next-generation gentler food processing technologies for healthy processed foods is a critical need.

    For the past two decades, Balasubramaniam and his multidisciplinary collaborators from Ohio State, together with food industry and equipment vendors, have focused on solving these challenges through the development of high pressure based food manufacture technological solutions. High pressure involves exposing food to very high pressures (87,000 pounds per square inch) with or without heat to inactivate harmful microorganisms and spoilage microorganisms with reduced or minimal impact on product nutrients and quality. Technological solutions Balasubramaniam and his colleagues have developed include commercialization of high pressure, pressure-ohmic thermal processing, ultra shear technology, and high pressure crystallization of lipids.

    Balasubramaniam helped establish a global network of experts through the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), which conducts annual workshops and short courses around the globe to transfer laboratory research to industrial practice, thus receiving the 2017 Cal Willey IFT Distinguished Service Award. His work has also received media attention; Popular Mechanics highlighted his research under “10 Tech Concepts You Need to Know for 2012,” and the Columbus Dispatch (February 2017) noted how Ohio became a hub for high pressure food processing in part due to Balasubramaniam and his colleagues’ contributions. Balasubramaniam was elected a Fellow of Institute of Food Technologists in 2017 and a Fellow of International Academy of Food Science and Technology in 2016. His innovative and creative contributions have served as a catalyst for implementation of high pressure based technological solutions in the food industry and has impacted society at large.

    The award consists of a plaque and $1,000 for Balasubramaniam and $2,500 added to the operating expense account of his research program for one year.

    Erdal Ozkan, Luis Canas, Michael Reding, Christopher Ranger, Heping Zhu; Innovator of the Year Award

    The Intelligent Sprayer Development and Testing Team consists of Erdal Ozkan, professor, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering; Luis Canas, associate professor, Entomology; Michael Reding, adjunct professor, Entomology; Christopher Ranger, adjunct professor, Entomology; and Heping Zhu, adjunct professor, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering. In addition, recognition is also given to support staff Adam Clark, Barry Nudd, and Andy Doklovic, who are engineering technicians in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering.

    The team was selected for its development of the Laser-Guided Variable-Rate Intelligent Sprayer for Nursery, Orchard, and Grape Applications. The sprayer developed and field tested by the team is the first automatic spraying system of its kind in the world. It can detect the presence of crop canopy, map the canopy  architecture, calculate the sectional canopy volume for individual nozzles, and activate individual nozzles to discharge variable spray outputs to match crop architectures and foliage volume in real time. This innovation was nominated based on its uniqueness, its potential impact (cost and time savings to producers, protecting the environment from potential pollution from excessive use of pesticides), and for leading to obtaining significant funding from USDA. It has also received national awards and recognition.

    The new spraying system eliminates excessive waste of pesticides when spraying trees or similar plants with conventional air-assisted sprayers. This waste reduction is beneficial to ecosystems and saves growers money. It also saves growers time by requiring fewer spray tank refills to cover the same area. The new spraying system will significantly advance spray technologies and offer an economically and environmentally responsible approach for growers to controlling insects and diseases as well as applying other foliar products.

    The award consists of a plaque for each of the team members, $1,000 for Ozkan and Canas, and $5,000 added to the team’s operating expense account for one year.

    Tonsol Park, William E. Krauss Award for Excellence in Graduate Research

    Tansol Park, Animal Sciences was honored for “Inhibition of the Rumen Ciliate Entodinium caudatum by Antibiotics.” He received $1,000 and a framed copy of his paper. A framed copy also went to his advisor, Zhongtang Yu, also of Animal Sciences. The Krauss award recognizes the best published paper by a CFAES PhD student.

    The members of the selection committee for the Junior Faculty, Senior Faculty, and Krauss awards were V.M. Balasubramaniam (co-chair), Michelle Jones (co-chair), Jeff Firkins, Jeff LeJeune, Feng Qu, and Megan Meuti Nicol.

    Before the awards presentation, the conference featured two keynote speakers, eight “lightning round” presentations by CFAES researchers, a stakeholder panel discussion and an update on CFAES by Dean Cathann A. Kress. The conference’s focus was water quality.


  160. OSU Precision Agriculture Program Shares at Board of Trustees Meeting

    Picture of monitors in tractor cab.

    As Ohio State administrators and faculty reported on recent research successes and future plans at the February Board of Trustees meeting, the Precision Agriculture Program was featured as one of two programs which exemplified the goals of innovation and collaboration.

    “Precision agriculture is just another example of how Ohio State University is addressing grand challenges,” said Elizabeth Hawkins, assistant professor and field specialist, Ohio State University Extension.

    Precision Agriculture at The Ohio State University focuses on developing precision nutrient management strategies and technologies to improve efficiency of fertilizer placement, enabling on-farm evaluation, automating machine functionality, enhancing placement of pesticides and seed, developing analytical tools for digital agriculture, and more. Advancing research and technology will help farmers optimize their productivity potential.

    As the world’s population continues to grow over the next 50 years, it is estimated that agricultural production will have to double in order to meet the growing demand for food and changing dietary preferences. Technologies and research being developed by Ohio State’s Precision Agriculture Program will help farmers reach this level of production while maintaining our current natural resource base.

    “Ohio State University is well positioned to lead given the breadth of our faculty expertise, our excellent county-level extension education network, and our connection with the private sector,” said Scott Shearer, chair and professor of the Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering.

    In an effort to give Ohio farmers access to actionable information and data-driven results from precision agriculture research studies, the Precision Agriculture Program recently released the 2017 eFields Report.

    “Agriculture is very complex, what works for one farm or field doesn’t necessarily work well for others. Digital agriculture is making it possible to better understand what causes these differences and how to manage for them.” Hawkins said. “eFields makes it easier for Ohio farmers to find sound research results that are relevant to their unique operations and use that information to improve their decision making.”

    Ohio State Precision Agriculture has also been recognized this past year for its world record for most data collected from a single corn plant, demonstration of a multi-hybrid seeding prescription to create the university’s primary athletic logo in a cornfield, and their recent Precision University on nutrient management.

    You can learn more about the precision agriculture program at https://fabe.osu.edu/programs/precisionag.

    Follow the team on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and sign up for quarterly updates from the precision agriculture program here. — Chip Tuson

  161. Jackwood receives 2018 Charles Beard Research Excellence Award

    Daral Jackwood

    The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY) and the USPOULTRY Foundation named Daral Jackwood the 2018 recipient of the annual Charles Beard Research Excellence Award. Jackwood is a professor in the CFAES Food Animal Health Research Program based on the Wooster campus. The award is named in honor of Charles Beard, former director of the Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory and former vice president of research at USPOULTRY.

    In their press release, USPOULTRY said: The USPOULTRY Foundation Research Advisory Committee selected Jackwood for this award based on his exceptional research on infectious bursal disease. Jackwood is recognized for his contributions to the understanding of the genetic diversity of infectious bursal disease virus, the genetic basis for antigenic drift in the virus, development of detection methods for very virulent infectious disease virus, and development of a genetic classification system for infectious bursal disease virus variants. Jackwood served as the primary investigator on five grants from USPOULTRY and the USPOULTRY Foundation to support much of this work. In his role at Ohio State, Jackwood has very actively communicated his findings through publications and presentations, and his work has formed much of the basis for current programs used to control infectious bursal disease virus infections in the poultry industry.

    “The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association has been very supportive of our research program over the years, and I am very grateful for this support. The support of the Association has helped us to make meaningful advances in the control and diagnosis of infectious bursal disease,” Jackwood said.

    “Dr. Jackwood’s research program is a great example of how USPOULTRY research funds can be directed toward important applied research to find solutions to current problems faced by the poultry industry. The quality of Dr. Jackwood’s research is outstanding, and the results have been used by the poultry industry to make improvements in the control of infectious bursal disease,” remarked Dr. John Glisson, vice president of research programs for USPOULTRY.

    Jackwood received a B.S. in Animal Science from the University of Delaware in 1978, M.S. in infectious diseases from Ohio State in 1980 and a Ph.D. in molecular virology from Ohio State in 1982. He joined the faculty at Ohio State in 1986.

    The goal of the Charles Beard Research Excellence Award is to recognize outstanding completed research projects, funded by USPOULTRY or the USPOULTRY Foundation, that have made a significant positive impact on the poultry industry. As the recipient of the award, Jackwood received a $1,500 cash prize. The award was presented to him during the International Poultry Scientific Forum meeting by Charles Beard.

  162. Culman honored for early-career soil health research

    Steve Culman photo

    Steve Culman, Assistant Professor of Soil Fertility, received the second annual New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research award. The annual set of early career grants to outstanding food and agriculture research faculty members is a program of the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), a nonprofit established through bipartisan congressional support in the 2014 Farm Bill.

    Culman received a FFAR grant of $221,541 over three years. Matching funds from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and the School of Environment and Natural Resources at The Ohio State University will double the Foundation’s investment for a significant award totaling $443,082.

    “The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research is pleased to support Dr. Culman’s research as part of our work to catalyze innovation and foster a strong scientific workforce for the future,” said Sally Rockey, Ph.D., executive director of FFAR. “I look forward to seeing the impact of the New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research award not only on Dr. Culman’s career, but also on advancing agriculture.”

    The New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research program supports promising scientists who demonstrate not only a commitment to catalyzing innovation in food and agriculture, but also a dedication to mentoring students.

    “I’m honored to have been selected for this New Innovator award. I look forward to the work and the positive impact that will hopefully follow.  My lab is very excited to continue to advance the science of soil health and partner with farmers to address some of the key questions in this field,” Culman said.

    This research project will investigate promising tests of the rapidly cycled and biologically-active pool of organic matter to see how these tests reflect nutrient cycling and nutrient supply to crops. The project will build on a statewide, on-farm effort to revise fertilizer recommendations by pairing these results with active organic matter tests. The goal will be to reveal the ability of these tests to inform nutrient management decisions. The project will also address procedural issues that currently limit adoption of soil health tests into commercial soil testing laboratories. This research will advance the development of soil health testing frameworks for active organic matter and strive to alleviate some key obstacles that limit widespread soil health testing by farmers.

    A public request for nominations for the New Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research Award was limited to researchers within the first three years of their faculty careers. Applicants were also required to demonstrate a commitment to mentoring, supporting the Foundation’s interest in inspiring future generations of agricultural and food scientists.

    Learn more about the 2017 New Innovators and their research directions: http://foundationfar.org/new-innovator/.


  163. Graham Cochran named associate dean, operations

    Graham Cochran is now CFAES associate dean for operations.
    Most recently, Cochran served as interim senior administrative officer.

    Previously, Cochran served Ohio State University Extension in employee and organizational development and recently served as interim chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership. Cochran began his career at Ohio State in 1996 as a county director and Extension educator in Sandusky County. Since that initial appointment, he has accepted increasing responsibilities, including center director at Adventure Central in Dayton and in Extension Human Resources.
    The Associate Dean for Operations is primarily responsible for providing leadership for strategy including risk management, accountability, strategic planning and associated resource allocation. Cochran will drive the development of financial and operational policies and procedures that integrate space, fiscal and human resource considerations, and oversee department, unit and program reviews and strategic plans to ensure alignment with college and university priorities.

    He also will provide oversight for information and educational technology, land resources, facilities and capital planning. His leadership skills will help the college with its focus and identity as he leads the strategic planning process in the coming year.

    Cochran received his bachelor’s degree in Biology from Marietta College, master’s degree in Zoology from Miami University, and his PhD in Extension Education from The Ohio State University.

  164. Roads Scholars visit Western Research Station

    Photo of Scott Shearer

    The Western Agricultural Research Station in South Charleston was the last stop on the 2017 Roads Scholars Tour in July for about 50 faculty members, administrators and community leaders. Among the presenters were David Benfield, Scott Shearer, photo, Mark Loux, Eric England, Mack Riedel, and Laura Lindsey.

    Other stops this year included the university's airport, the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, Emory Oleochemicals, the Plum Street Temple, the University of Cincinnati Community Design Center, and the National Weather Service. The tour is an annual, two-day, traveling seminar that visits a region of Ohio – this year the southwest – to meet faculty and community partners, talk with current and future Ohio State students, learn from business and community leaders, and get acquainted with others who may be partners for future projects.

  165. Cleveland research featured in city event

    Prairie in Cleveland with people.

    Research underway in Cleveland by graduate student Denisha Parker, undergraduate Ryan Byler, and entomologist Mary Gardiner was featured in the city's ciCLEvia event July 16.

    In its second year, ciCLEvia is an open streets movement that periodically closes down sections of the city to motorists and opens it to everything from yoga to cycling to giant Jenga games and hula hooping. 

    On July 16, the group showcased the Central Neighborhood of Cleveland, allowing families to walk among five activity hubs. Included was an OARDC prairie research site that is looking at the importance of green spaces for native insect biodiversity and whether habitat design influences a green space’s conservation value.

    For more on the research, visit: https://u.osu.edu/gardinerlab/research-studies/denisha-parker/.

    In the photo, Denisha Parker, yellow shirt, and Ryan Byler, blue shirt, help budding entomologists wrangle their catch.

  166. Rattan Lal receives honoray degree

    Photo of Rattan Lal and others.

    Rattan Lal, Director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center, received the Honoris Causa degree from the Universitat de Lleida, Spain on June 13.

    While in Spain, Lal discussed distance learning, student exchanges, study abroad opportunitiies and soil management research with the rector and vice rector of the 700-year-old university. Included in the photo, from the left, are Delfi Robinat Catala (President del Consell Social), Ildefonso Pla Sentis (professor of soil science), Roberto Fernandez Diaz (rector), Lal, and M. Teresa Areces Piñol, secretary general of the University of Lleida.

  167. Exhibit educates public on Ohio’s forest resources

    picture of white oack wood and leaves

    Building Ohio State:  From Forest to the Renovation of the Thompson Library was among the most popular exhibits presented by the Ohio State University Libraries, said a library official. On display through May 14, the exhibit examined the past, present and future of Ohio’s forest resources and told the story of the unique connection and history shared between The Ohio State University and Ohio’s forests.

    “The final visitor count was 1,732. This makes Building Ohio State the third highest attended exhibition out of the past four years,” said Ken Aschliman, exhibitions coordinator for the University Libraries. 

    “This exhibition was special for us because it was the first exhibition where the spark came from outside the University Libraries. By working with community partners and partners across the university, the project brought a lot attention to the history of Ohio’s forests, the history of OSU, and the recent renovation of Thompson Library.”

    The exhibit featured interactive opportunities to learn about Ohio’s forest resources, showed examples of forest products, and highlighted sustainable forest management and its continuing role in education, sustainability and economic development in the state of Ohio. 

    It also brought awards to several people. Mark Ervin, with the Ohio Society of American Foresters (OSAF), received the “Communicator of the Year” award from the organization. OSAF also honored Florian Diekmann, college librarian, with the “Outstanding Contribution to Forestry from Outside the Profession” award. Kathy Smith, forestry program director, was awarded the “Outstanding Individual in Conservation Education Award” by the Ohio Forestry Association for her work on the exhibit (among other things). 

    This exhibition was organized by The Ohio State University Libraries and the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) in collaboration with the Ohio Society of American Foresters, the Ohio Forestry Association, the Ohio Tree Farm Committee, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry.

    “The extraordinary collaboration of this team combined libraries expertise in information resources and exhibit design with CFAES and the forestry community’s capacity for storytelling around how Ohio State research advances sustainable practices and economic development for the state of Ohio,” noted Lisa Carter, Ohio State University Libraries’ Associate Director for Special Collections and Area Studies.

    “This exhibit was the perfect nexus to tell Ohio State’s land-grant story and showcase the Thompson Library as a fine example of its application,” Carter said. “This partnership will serve as a model for us as our librarians work with faculty and staff across campus to connect deeply with our community and people across the state.”

     “I am so delighted that the University Libraries allowed us this opportunity to honor Ohio’s Forest and Wood products industry and it was great to see our industry partners and stakeholders active engagement with this exhibit,” said Jeff Sharp, director of the School of Environment and Natural Resources. The school is part of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

    “The library’s beautiful white oak is further enriched though our deeper understanding of that woods origin,” Sharp said. “I look forward to Ohio State University continuing to work with the timber industry to enhance this significant Ohio resource.”

    To learn more about the exhibit and view videos on Building Ohio State visit go.osu.edu/BuildingOhioState

  168. Rattan Lal honored by Elsevier

    Rattan Lal, director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center at The Ohio State University, was honored with the Elsevier Atlas award March 31, for his journal article “Food Security in a Changing Climate,"  published in the “Echohydrology & Hydrobiology" journal in April 2013.

    “The health of soil, plants, animals, people, and ecosystems is one and indivisible,” Lal said in an interview with Elsevier Atlas. “Healthier soil creates healthier people. That’s especially true for micronutrient deficiency. If the soil is deficient, then the plants grown in it are deficient and the food consumed by people is deficient. Therefore landscape management for conserving and sustaining soil resources is essential.”

    Elsevier, one of the world’s major publishers of scientific, medical and technology information, uses the Atlas awards to showcase research that can have or has had a significant impact on people’s lives around the world, said Virginia Prada LoPez, representing the organization.

    “He’s a rock star in the science community and uses science to address contemporary problems,” said Jeff Sharp, Chair, School of Environment and Natural Resources in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, at the event recognizing Lal. “He’s had his hands in the soil in a lot of places in the world.”

    In the photo, from left to right, are Young Wu, Elsevier; Rattan Lal, Ohio State; Virginia Prada LoPez, Elsevier.



  169. Buy Your Own Logowear Through Promouniversity

    College faculty and staff can now purchase their own logo wear through Promouniversity. CFAES is one of four Ohio State colleges offering this option.

    Currently, shirts and sweatshirts can be ordered with the college name and university logo. Soon, options will be expanded to include departmental, unit and county names.

    This option is best for individual orders or for orders with fewer than 36 items.

    To see what's available, visit http://osubuybuckeye.com.

  170. Ian Sheldon Discusses Impact of Administration's Trade Policy

    Photo of Ian Sheldon

    Ian Sheldon, Andersons Chair in Agricultural Marketing, Trade and Policy in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics served as a panelist for the Columbus Metropolitan Club in a January session.

    During the Blue Chip Economic Forecast, Sheldon discussed the impact a trade war with China and Mexico could have on the U.S. economy.

    "If Trump were to implement a 45 percent tariff against the Chinese across the board . . . and if he puts a 35 percent tariff against imports from Mexico, he's going to put the economy into recession, if the Chinese and Mexicans retaliate, as I expect them to do," Sheldon said. To hear the full economic forecast, go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkHUmTj4bhs&feature=youtu.be.

    Sheldon's segment starts about 22 minutes into the video.

  171. Experience Ohio State for a Day Program Success

    Student ambassador holding Buckeye number one hand

    Geared towards high school juniors and seniors and transfer students, the program began in 2011 and has had continued success in recruiting prospective students. Visiting students get the chance to meet with the Coordinator of Prospective Student Services, receive a tour of the college campus, shadow a current OSU student in their area of interest, and meet with an administrator from Academic Programs.

    Below are some of the key highlights from the Autumn 2016 semester:

    • 64 planned visits, the largest Autumn amount since the program began in 2011
    • 52 completed visits, on track with 53 visits from Autumn 2015
    • Doubled amount of evaluations received from Autumn 2015 (21) to Autumn 2016 (41)
    • 36 out of 43 Seniors (84%) who visited applied to OSU
    • More completed visits in December than ever before
    • Out of the 41 completed evaluations, 100% of students said they planned to apply
    • 35 different OSU student hosts used for 52 completed visits


  172. Kristina Boone new director for ATI

    Photo of Kris Boone

    Access, affordability and excellence are three major reasons the Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute’s incoming director sought the position.

    Kristina M. Boone, Communications and Agricultural Education department head in the College of Agriculture at Kansas State University, will start her new role with ATI April 1, 2017.

    “The radical concept of a land-grant university is that of accessibility, and ATI reflects this like no other institution,” Boone said. First-generation college students make up 62 percent of ATI’s student population, and 35 percent are identified as low income. As with other regional Ohio State campuses, ATI’s tuition is lower than that on the Columbus campus, making it more affordable.

    The measures of student success, the access to internships and the hands-on learning opportunities all point to excellence, Boone said.

    Boone received her MS and PhD from Ohio State in agricultural communication and extension education, respectively, and her undergraduate degree from Texas Tech. She served as a watershed extension agent with Ohio State University Extension and co-led a water education program during her graduate program.

    “I’m excited about returning to Ohio State University in this new and different capacity. The campus is well positioned because of the strategic planning initiatives,” she said.

    As ATI director, Boone will be responsible for managing administrative, human and financial resources. She will provide leadership for all programmatic and administrative functions, including on-campus teaching, emerging e-learning instruction, research, service, engagement, marketing, student services and student recruitment.


  173. OARDC/Extension-sponsored event earns national award

    Adult and child with plant photo

    Jackson-Vinton Farm Bureau recently won the American Farm Bureau Federation County Activities of Excellence (CAE) Award for a program held at the Jackson Research Station. It is one of only 24 counties in the United States to be recognized.

    The award recognizes Ag Experience Day, an event held annually at the research station each May. It attracts about 500 second graders from surrounding schools and focuses on agriculture and natural resources.

    Sponsors include OARDC, OSU Extension, Jackson City Schools, and the Jackson Soil and Water Conservation District. Jackson-Vinton Farm Bureau will be displaying its award-winning event at the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting in Phoenix in January.

  174. BioHio Research Park to become part of CFAES

    The BioHio Board of Directors in late August decided to transition the work of the BioHio Research Park, an Ohio State affiliate located on the CFAES Wooster campus, to be under the auspices of CFAES. Envisioned and created in 2010, the park's goals were and still are to facilitate the movement of discoveries from CFAES into the commercial sector; to advance, encourage, and promote the industrial, economic, commercial, and civic development of the Wooster area; and to serve as a research park for the benefit of Ohio State, Wooster, and Wayne County.

    “The original goals of BioHio are still relevant and part of the CFAES mission,” said Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. But the park’s separate legal status from the university “was not providing the benefits originally envisioned,” she said. The transition will occur over the next few months.

    Read more.

  175. Ag comm student jumps to NCAA championship

    Zack Bazile

    Senior agricultural communication major Zack Bazile jumped 8.37 meters, or 27 feet, 5.5 inches to earn first place in the long jump at the NCAA Division 1 Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon in June.

    Bazile becomes the first NCAA Champion for the Buckeyes since Chris Nelloms won the 200 meter dash in 1993, and is the first long jump champion since Joe Green in 1989.

    Bazile, from Montvale, N.J., also received a Big Ten Athlete of the Year award and was named Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year. He was also part of Ohio State's relay team, which was the national runner-up in the final race with a time of 38.75.


  176. Equestrian team wins Reserve National Championship

    Ohio State's Equestrian Team

    The Ohio State Western Equestrian Team won the Reserve National Championship at the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) National Championship.

    The Western and Hunt Seat Equestrian Teams compete in the IHSA, which encompasses more than 400 member colleges in 45 states and Canada. The Ohio State teams have successfully earned multiple national and reserve national titles over the past several years. The Western Equestrian Team has won 10 National Titles (’14, ’08, ’06, ’02,’99, ’97, ’96, 93, ’92, ’91) and is currently the most successful western team in the IHSA. 

    Three members of the Western Equestrian Team qualified to compete as individuals. To make it to nationals as an individual, the rider must reach 36 points in their respective class at a qualifying competition, must place in the top two at regionals, and the top four at semi-finals.

    The three individual qualifiers and their placings in their respective events were:

    • Tricia Bellman, Fostoria, Ohio, Beginner Western Horsemanship — 1st place
    • Erin Bosse, Findlay, Ohio, Advanced Western Horsemanship — 6th place
    • Tyler Kirby, Grove City, Ohio, Open Reining — 2nd place
      • 5th place overall in points

    Additional members competed as part of a team for Ohio State. Team riders qualify based on their riding ability and riding consistency throughout the season. A team must make it to the top three at semifinals to move on to nationals.

    Team riders and their placing in their respective events were:

    • Tori Gonzales, Dennison, Ohio, Beginner Western Horsemanship — 1st place
    • Kimmy Hartman, Galloway, Ohio, Intermediate Western Horsemanship — 7th place
    • Morgan Kiehl, Delaware, Ohio, Novice Western Horsemanship — 5th place
    • Jillian Channell, Springfield, Ohio, Advanced Western Horsemanship — 2nd place
    • Erin Bosse, Findlay, Ohio, Open Western Horsemanship — 3rd place
    • Tyler Kirby, Grove City, Ohio, Open Reining — 6th place

    In addition to current students, Ohio State had several alumni successfully compete:

    • Crister Cramer, 2014 graduate, Arcadia, Ohio, Alumni Western Horsemanship — 5th place
      • Alumni Reining — 8th place
    • Elisabeth Bianco, 2013 graduate, Wadsworth, Ohio,  Alumni Western Horsemanship — 7th place
      • Alumni Reining — 1st place

    Debbie and Ollie Griffith coach the Ohio State Western Equestrian Team. The 2018 IHSA National Championships were in Harrisburg, Pa., May 3-6, at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex.

  177. Whittington Honored for Enhancing Student Wellness

    Pat Whittington and Janet Steinbacher

    The Office of Student Life honored Pat Whittington, CFAES assistant dean for student development, with the Outstanding Faculty Program for Enhancing Student Wellness award last month.

    Whittington talked to students about how to apply for scholarships and what selection committees look for when reviewing scholarship applications. He addressed the value of financial wellness and discussed the possible financial aid opportunities available through Ohio State as well as how to look for financial aid outside of the university.

    Each year the office honors the faculty that have come in to the halls to connect with students outside the classroom. One faculty member is honored in each of the four core values of Residence Life:  community, inclusion, wellness, and learning.

    The wellness award is intended to recognize the best overall wellness program that was created to promote student wellness in any of nine dimensions. These programs can emphasize several dimensions of wellness or just focus on one of the nine dimensions.

    The nine dimensions of wellness include emotional, career, social, spiritual, physical, financial, intellectual, creative, and environmental wellness, said Kazzie Kurzhais, member of the Residence Life Academic Initiatives committee.
    "Our winning program encompassed wellness in a dimension that doesn’t get discussed as often, but is pivotal to the success of our students," she said. "Financial wellness information is so important to have and something that we all can use for the rest of our lives."

  178. Extension Honors Employees at 2018 Conference

    Hand drawing award cup

    Ohio State University Extension honored employees and friends at the January Extension conference. Among those recognized:

    Ruby Award Winner — Valente Alvarez, Food Industry Center
    Epsilon Sigma Phi (ESP) Friend of Extension Award— WTGR, Darke County; Eric Dresbach, Pickaway County; Don Branson, Highland County
    ESP Meritorious Support Service Recognition — Tracy Blackstone, Noble County
    ESP Retiree Service Award — Becky Cropper, Brown County
    Extension Support Staff Excellence Award — Lori Moff, Mahoning County
    Charles W. Lifer Excellence in 4-H Award — Mark Light, Hardin County, interim co-SW Region director
    Marilyn Spiegel Excellence in Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Award — Kate Shumaker, Holmes County
    Steve D. Ruhl Outstanding Agriculture and Natural Resources County Extension Educator Award — Rory Lewandowski, Wayne County
    Raymond A. Schindler Excellence in Community Development Extension Award — Becky Nesbitt, OSU South Centers
    ESP Excellence in Extension Award — Alan Sundermeier, Wood County.

  179. National Mastitis Council presents Award of Excellence to Joseph Hogan

    Joe Hogan

    The National Mastitis Council (NMC) honored Joseph “Joe” Hogan with the 2018 NMC Award of Excellence for Contribution to Mastitis Prevention and Control. The 2006 NMC president, Hogan is an emeritus professor with The Ohio State University. Boehringer Ingelheim sponsors the award and presented Hogan with a $2,500 honorarium.

    A native of Jonesboro, La., Hogan earned his bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University, master’s degree from the University of Kentucky and doctorate degree from the University of Vermont. In 1986, he became a post-doctoral researcher with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) Mastitis Laboratory. A year later, he was promoted to research scientist in the department of dairy science, OARDC. His career progressed further to assistant professor, associate professor and professor in the Department of Animal Sciences. In 2011, Hogan became associate chair of the department, a position he held until his retirement in 2016. His areas of expertise include: bovine mammary gland host defense against intramammary infections, virulence factors of mastitis-causing bacteria, and development of means to modulate bovine mammary defenses. Last year, he was inducted into Ohio State’s Dairy Science Hall of Fame.

    Hogan’s commitment to NMC runs deep. He served on the Research Committee for 19 years, Teat Dip Committee for 12 years, Program Committee for three years, Long Range Planning Committee for nine years, and helped write two versions of Current Concepts of Bovine Mastitis and Laboratory Handbook on Bovine Mastitis, and the Microbiological Procedures for the Diagnosis of Bovine Udder Infection. One of his most notable contributions is developing and launching the NMC Scholars program.

    In addition to his many contributions to NMC, Hogan also assisted the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) and International Dairy Federation (IDF). For IDF, he served on the Animal Health Standing Committee and Mastitis Action Team. In 1994, Hogan received the Distinguished Research Award as the OARDC top junior scientist and ADSA West-Agro Research Award. Four years ago, he earned the ADSA Elanco Award for Excellence in Dairy Science.

    Hogan maintained an internationally recognized research program in mastitis control and quality milk production. His research resulted in 119 peer-reviewed journal articles, 16 book chapters, 87 scientific abstracts, 226 lay articles, 39 invited symposium presentations and 239 invited seminar presentations.

    The 2018 NMC Award of Excellence recipient advised 13 graduate students, including Christina Petersson-Wolfe, an associate professor at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and past board member of NMC. She described her former adviser as a “steadfast NMC supporter.” From a research perspective, Petersson-Wolfe said Hogan’s most notable research contributions were related to the understanding of environmental mastitis pathogen control, impact of vitamin E and selenium on udder health, and the role of core antigen vaccines in mastitis control programs.

    “Dr. Hogan not only showed me the world of milk microbiology but taught me the historical perspective on udder health, which is often lost in today’s graduate training,” wrote Petersson-Wolfe. “Dr. Hogan was also very passionate about the training of undergraduate students.”

    In addition to his research program, Hogan had an active Extension program. The foundation of his Extension program was an active milk culturing laboratory. Each year, thousands of milk and bedding samples were processed and results were used to aid dairy producers in monitoring milk quality on dairy farms. Hogan also worked closely with many veterinarians who used the milk culturing laboratory as a service and sought advice with on-farm mastitis problems.

  180. Jepsen named president of ag safety and health society

    Dee Jepsen interviewed by Gary Jackson

    Dee Jepsen was recently named president of the International Society for Agricultural Safety and Health (ISASH). Jepsen will serve on the Board of Directors for a two-year term through the summer of 2019.

    ISASH is an organization dedicated to the professional development of agricultural safety and health professionals, providing national and international leadership in preventing agricultural injuries and illnesses to the agricultural community. ISASH provides opportunities for sharing information about research and intervention programs, improving professional skills and knowledge, networking, and other supportive activities. Learn more about ISASH.

    Jepsen is an associate professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering and state leader for the OSU Extension Agricultural Safety & Health Program. Many of her efforts around the state have gained her a national reputation for leadership in community safety initiatives.

    During her term, Jepsen hopes to foster additional international connections within the Society. “I have a goal to connect and re-connect members with others doing work in this discipline. There are so many opportunities to impact farmers’ and ranchers’ quality of life through better outreach and engagement of best management practices. Whether it’s domestically or around the world, this organization connects many of us in the occupational safety and health field.”

    Jepsen has been a member of ISASH for 25 years. “To be entrusted to lead this organization is a professional honor.” – Chip Tuson

  181. Home improvements: CFAES facility upgrades you might not know about

    Little things mean a lot when it comes to supporting the work you do — and where you do it.

    Members of CFAES’s Facilities and Capital Planning department, led by Brian Hanna, capital planning director, recently completed, or are about to complete, a large number of possibly under-the-radar projects aimed at improving classrooms, labs and office spaces. The projects may be less noticeable than a new, from-the-ground-up building, for instance, but they contribute in big ways, every day, to our efficiency, effectiveness and comfort on the job, and also to the success of our students.

    “Typically, when people hear the term ‘capital improvements,’ new buildings come to mind,” Hanna said. “But that’s not always the case. Oftentimes we’re able to create significant physical improvements inside existing walls.”

    Here’s a look at some of those projects, courtesy of the department’s Chuck Gamble, facilities project coordinator; Randall Marthey, senior engineer; and Gene Howell, senior project manager.

    Columbus Campus

    In Columbus, projects were completed in Howlett Hall, Kottman Hall and the Animal Science Building. Projects also were completed involving spaces used by the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) and the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE).

    • Kottman Hall 334 is now a shared classroom/lab between the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science and the Department of Entomology.
    • Kottman Hall 447 is now a classroom/lab for the Department of Plant Pathology.
    • Kottman Hall 449 is now a Plant Pathology prep room.
    • Kottman Hall 451 is now a shared classroom/lab between Plant Pathology and Entomology.
    • Overall, the rooms were renovated and refreshed. Dark wood cabinets were painted light to brighten up the space, with new paint, new ceilings, new LED lighting, new teaching boards (some glass, some standard chalkboards), new electric with overhead cord reels, and new mobile lab tables and chairs. All rooms had technology added to allow communication with Wooster classes. “We also addressed ADA accessibility to sinks along with new lab tables,” Gamble said. Finally, new storage cabinets and stripped and waxed floors “really added a nice touch.”
    • “In the Kottman situation, one interesting tidbit: Both 334 and 451 went from one department space to shared space between departments, so both departments kicked in on the renovations,” Gamble said.
    • Howlett Hall 216: Three rooms previously used by CFAES Advancement were turned into three lecturer offices, one conference room and a Food Science and Technology flavor lab with a services support room.
    • Howlett Hall Greenhouse Headhouse Classroom G117: The room was totally refreshed with paint, a new ceiling, new LED lighting, new retractable electric cord reels, a new ADA lab table, new lab tables and chairs, and new counter and sinks. A prep room also was added. The classroom/lab room was reversed from its previous floor plan.
    • The Animal Science Building had two labs on the ground floor renovated or refreshed, with paint, new floors, new ceilings, new LED lighting and “much-needed” electric service.
    • The south wing of the second floor of the Agricultural Administration Building was demolished to provide new administrative offices and a conference room for AEDE. “Talk about a very nice contemporary space!” Gamble said.
    • FABE has a “dandy new high-tech classroom,” Gamble said — Agricultural Engineering 148.

    Wooster Campus

    Two Wooster buildings saw upgrades to their heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), projects led by Marthey that should be wrapping up soon.

    • The NIH (National Institutes of Health) building is an animal facility where testing is conducted on several species of animals, from chickens to cattle. “Humans over time have had a tendency to design space based on human occupancy versus our animal friends’ needs,” Gamble said. So animal-based improvements were made including a new air handler and chilled water system to provide the best environment for 11 animal pens, and individual temperature controls for each pen. A new filter system also was added for the exhaust from the facility. “The environmental controls have been influenced by a staff veterinarian, who took into consideration what air quality should be for each species of animal,” Marthey said. “Quite the challenge for the engineers!” Gamble added.
    • Williams Hall and its annex house the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, the School of Environment and Natural Resources, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service. The building contains labs in the interior, with offices around the perimeter. New fume hoods and exhaust were installed, “which is a major upgrade for our researchers in Williams,” Marthey said. New cooling for office areas was added, too, he said, “and on a hot summer day in July will certainly be appreciated by faculty and staff.”

    Secrest Arboretum

    Meanwhile, also in Wooster, Secrest Arboretum’s new Welcome Center project went out to bid recently, with the apparent successful low bidder being Canton-based Beaver Constructors Inc., Howell said. The contract agreement is being prepared now.

    The project is a repurposing of the Wooster Campus’s former Research Operations Service Building (#29 in a green circle near the top on this map), a single-story building about 40 feet by 120 feet in size with 18-foot ceilings. The building’s mower shop, filling about 20 percent of the space, will remain there. Staff members who were officed in the building have relocated to other spaces on the campus.

    The project’s estimated construction cost was $1.56 million, Beaver’s bid was about $1.39 million, “so that allows us to include all of the alternates” for the project, too, Howell said. Those alternates include a larger assembly area, an enhanced landscaping package — including both plantings and hardscaping — and a glass upgrade that will allow the inclusion of a viewing corridor in the building.

    Currently, office areas are being removed from the front portion of the building, with an attractive metal façade planned to cover the “scar.” Inside will be four main areas: an orientation area; the “support core” for offices, a kitchen, storage space and the like; a large multipurpose room dividable into two smaller rooms, slated for use by Ohio State ATI classes and arboretum special events; and a display corridor running from the building’s existing entryway to its east end for hanging murals, photographs and the like.

    Formal groundbreaking for the project is expected in late winter or early spring, Howell said. Construction is planned to take about six months, so if all goes well, the new facility could open in late summer or early fall, he said.

    Funding for the project, whose total cost will be about $2 million, is coming equally from two sources: from private funds donated to the arboretum; and from the OARDC Director’s Office and CFAES.

    When it comes to improving CFAES’s facilities, “We need to seek out and take advantages of opportunities as they arise,” Hanna said, and the Welcome Center is a good example.

    “Wooster Farm Operations was moving out of a building located centrally to the arboretum, and Secrest Arboretum was looking to construct a new building at the same location,” he said. “The obvious solution was to move the Secrest program into the evacuated building.

    “The result will be a complete welcome center plus two large undergraduate teaching spaces for less than half the cost of a new building.”

  182. Extension employees honored by national organization

    ESP logo

    Five Ohio State University Extension employees will be honored at the national meeting of Epsilon Sigma Phi (ESP) in October in Wilmington, North Carolina.

    ESP is a national organization "dedicated to fostering standards of excellence in the Extension System and developing the Extension profession and professional."

    Representing the North Central region, honorees include:
    Continued Service, Jeff King, OSU Leadership Center; Mid-Career Service, Eric Barrett, Mahoning County Agriculture and Natural Resources; Visionary Leadership, Greg Davis, Community Development assistant director; Diversity Multicultural (Individual), Angie Holmes, Erie County 4-H; and Diversity Multicultural (Team), Sue Hogan, Franklin County 4-H. For more information, see https://espnational.org/en/.

  183. Faculty and staff complete leadership training

    A group photo of participants in leadership program

    The Spring 2017 CFAES Leadership Development Program brought 31 faculty and staff members together May 8-10.

    For John Rice, team leader for video production and data analysis in the college's Marketing and Communications office, it "provided great insight into what it takes to lead teams and work with people. It was also a great opportunity to meet people from different parts of the college and hear from them about how they are addressing the challenges they face."

    Facilitated by Claudia and Ruben Fernandez from Fast Track Leadership, the participants worked on paractical leadership skills, assessments and their use in organizations, perspectives in leadership, and leadership challenges within CFAES. They also learned about motivating people and dealing with conflict.

    The program "was a great opportunity to gather a cross section of CFAES leaders to discuss common challenges and implement proven management techniques for the betterment of our organization," said Randy Nemitz, educational technologies and client computing services manager for Information Technology. "It speaks volumes that our college is willing to invest in such an initiative."

    "We believe very strongly in fostering a learning culture in CFAES," said Graham Cochran, interim senior administrative officer for the college. "This program provides participants with additional tools, resources, and knowledge that benefit their professional career and the CFAES community."

    Those trained included Molly Bean, Trina Beebe, Kyle Bennett, Emily Buck, Ben Carignan, Matt DeVore, Chuck Gamble, Brandi Gilbert-Hammett, Andy Gurd, Roger Hamilton, Juliette Hanson, Kim Hostetler, Eugene Howell, Beau Ingle, Emily Jewell, Angie LeMaster, David Mackie, Randy Nemitz, Amanda Osborne, Eric Owens, John Rice, John Schoenhais, Difei Shen, Chris Simons, Lisa Simpson, Bill Smiley, Mike Sword, Michelle Villers, Seth Walker, Robyn Wilson and Nick Zachrich.

  184. CFAES predoctoral student receives USDA fellowship

    Stephanie Langel, a CFAES PhD candidate, was recently awarded the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Predoctoral Fellowship from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

    The NIFA fellowship is part of the Agricultural and Food Research Initiative, which is the nation’s leading competitive grant program for agricultural sciences. This program awards grants to leaders in research, education and extension to combat childhood obesity, improve rural economies, increase food production, create new sources of energy, mitigate the impacts of climate variability, address water availability issues, ensure food safety and security, and train the next generation of agricultural workforce.

    The NIFA fellowship is a fully funded two year grant, which will allow Langel to complete her research at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

    Langel is studying the maternal immune response, lactogenic (milk) immunity and neonatal health for her PhD research.

    “Through my research, I will strive to optimize vaccine efficacy for gestating and lactating swine to enhance the health and wellbeing of neonatal piglets,” said Langel. “This award will allow me to make scientific advancements and progress in the fields of veterinary virology and immunology. In return, these efforts will aid swine farmers in their ability to control infectious diseases on their farm, promote animal health and secure producer profits.”

    Not only will this research fulfill Langel’s PhD requirements, but it will contribute to securing Ohio State’s position as a leader in food and agrosecurity, assist Ohio pork producers at the state level, and increase understanding of the spread of infectious diseases in livestock populations at both the national and international level, said Langel.

    Langel is completing her PhD in the laboratory of Dr. Linda Saif, a Distinguished University professor in the Food Animal Health Research Program at OARDC in Wooster, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences.

    Langel completed her Ohio State undergraduate degree in Animal Sciences with a minor in Life Sciences in 2011. She then attended Virginia Tech for her master’s degree in the Dairy Science Department studying the adoptive transfer of maternal colostral cells and their impact on immune status and development in dairy calves. Following the completion of her master’s degree, Langel returned to Ohio State to work on her PhD. She spent one year in Columbus before moving to Wooster in 2014 to complete the research portion of her PhD.

    While working on her PhD in Columbus, Langel developed a program called Animal Sciences After-School (ASASci), which consists of 15 twenty-minute modules covering a vast array of topics within animal and biological sciences. She also worked with the non-profit after school program called After School All-Stars (ASAStars) to integrate ASASci into their educational programming in Columbus City middle schools. Through her extensive work with ASASci and ASAStars, Langel won Ohio State’s Diversity Engagement Award in 2015. She is currently the President of the OARDC Scholars Association located at the OARDC campus in Wooster.

    Langel’s current research is only a stepping stone in the direction she plans to go after receiving her PhD.

    “My goal is to become a research scientist studying maternal and neonatal immunity in both animals and humans, and to run a laboratory that explores the mother-infant relationship,” said Langel.

    Langel hopes to develop a nationally recognized research program that would allow for interdisciplinary collaborations in both human and veterinary sciences to further the understanding of lactogenic immunity and maternal-infant programming. Additionally, she would work to identify viruses and bacteria, and would collaborate with researchers to study the impact of the milk microbiome and virome on the development of a healthy gut in the infant. — By Katerina Sharp, CFAES Marketing and Communications intern

  185. Shirley Brooks-Jones goes to Broadway

    Image of CD cover for Come From Away

    On Sept. 11, 2001, Shirley Brooks-Jones was on her way home from Europe when she, her fellow passengers on Delta Flight 15, and passengers on 38 other wide-bodies planes, found themselves diverted to the tiny aiport of Gander in Newfoundland.

    Brooks-Jones, a steadfast advocate for the college, once served as assistant to Roy Kottman, vice president of agricultural administration and dean of the college, and later worked as a fundraiser for the university.

    After spending 28 hours on the plane, she and the other passengers were sent to Lewisporte, a tiny fishing village, where generous townspeople housed and fed the stranded passengers for three days. The people of Newfoundland would not accept money from the passengers, but wanting to thank them, Brooks-Jones passed around a notebook on the flight home asking passengers to contribute to a scholarship fund for the children of Gander. 

    They had $15,000 when they landed and the fund has since grown to about $2 million. So far, 228 graduates from Lewisporte Collegiate High School have received scholarships.

    This story, and other heartwarming stories of the generosity of the people of Newfoundland, are featured in a new Broadway Musical "Come From Away." Earlier, the play ran at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C. The soundtrack from the musical is available from Amazon.







  186. Volunteer and Supporter is Honored with Building Name

    Ohio State University Extension is a vital force for improving lives and strengthening communities and a key part to Ohio State’s land grant mission. Contributions from donors are allowing the college to build a state-of-the-art facility at Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory for Franklin County Extension, enhancing its educational programming and expanding its reach to better serve central Ohio residents.

    For decades, Patricia Brundige along with her parents, Kathryn and Fredrick Kunz, have supported OSU Franklin County Extension not only through their giving, but also as volunteers. The Ohio State Board of Trustees recently approved the new Franklin County Extension building to be named the Kunz-Brundige Franklin County Extension building.

    Brundige provided significant contributions to the college for Franklin County Extension’s new facility. She also wanted to honor the memory of her parents by positioning Franklin County Extension to become a world-class innovative model of cooperative extension with a centralized location to improve accessibility for Franklin County residents and close proximity to campus to allow staff to capitalize on and enhance ongoing collaborations.

    The college is moving forward on the new facility; Erdy McHenry Architecture, LLC has been secured and the design of the building is underway. The new building at Waterman will put cutting-edge research at the Extension office’s front door, thus engaging the community in demonstration gardens, large urban farm enterprises, nutrition kitchens, housing education, financial wellness and day camps.

    Although construction of the building is funded, Franklin County Extension is launching a #RoadtoWaterman campaign to raise funds for outdoor education and learning spaces including a three-season education pavilion, food opportunity center, and first-generation 4-H outreach program for youth and their families. There are three funds – 315720, 315722, and 315723 – established for individuals wishing to support the outdoor learning spaces at Waterman farm. For more information, visit go.osu.edu/roadtowaterman.

  187. Guo-Liang Wang named 2016 AAAS Fellow

    Guo-Liang Wang, professor of plant pathology, was one of four Ohio State University faculty elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in late 2016.
    Election as a Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. New Fellows will be welcomed in a ceremony at the AAAS annual meeting in Boston in February.

    Wang was elected for distinguished contributions to the field of plant pathology, particularly dissecting the molecular basis of plant resistance to pathogens.
    Other new Fellows from Ohio State include:
    James W. Cogdell, professor of mathematics, for distinguished contributions to number theory and representation theory, specifically to the Langlands program and the solution of Hilbert's 11th problem.
    Barbara Sue Ryden, professor of astronomy, for distinguished contributions to the theory of galaxy formation and to astronomy education, especially through her superb astrophysics and cosmology textbooks for advanced students.
    Shari R. Speer, professor of linguistics, for distinguished contributions to our understanding of speech processing and language prosody, and for introducing the public at large to language science in museum settings.
    “These four faculty members exemplify our missions of research, scholarship and teaching,” said President Michael V. Drake. “Their recognition is significant because it highlights the breadth of Ohio State’s contributions to society, in disciplines as diverse as theoretical mathematics, astronomy, language and plant pathology.”
    In all, 391 members have received the honor this year in recognition of their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Founded in 1848, AAAS is the world’s largest general scientific society. The tradition of electing AAAS Fellows began in 1874.
    This honor represents the Fellows’ tangible impact on the university community and beyond, said Caroline Whitacre, senior vice president for research, who was elected to the 2004 class of AAAS Fellows.
    “Because Fellows are elected by their peers, the honor is especially indicative of their scholarship as well as service to their disciplines and to society,” Whitacre said.
    With the addition of these new honorees, Ohio State boasts more than 100 AAAS Fellows.

  188. Livestock judging team from 1976 honored at national meeting

    CFAES Livestock Judging team from 1976 photo

    The college’s 1976 General Livestock Judging Team was recognized at the recent North American International Livestock Exposition in Kentucky. The event honors the National Championship Team 40 years prior.

    The Ohio State team has claimed the national title nine times, in 1904, 1921, 1932, 1933, 1939, 1946, 1964, 1976 and 1984.

    The 1976 team, coached by Jim Kinder, former director of Ohio State ATI, were represented by ten of the original 12 members and assistant coach Dave Higbea. In the picture, team members are: back row, left to right: Larry Piergallini, Dillonvale, Ohio; John Day, Georgetown, Kentucky; Dave Faulkner, St. Paris, Ohio; Farabee McCarthy, Sycamore, Ohio; Joy McCarthy, Sycamore, Ohio; and assistant coach Dave Higbea, Clay Center, Nebraska. In the front row, left to right: Lacy Boney, Lore City, Ohio; Mike Taylor, Springfield, Ohio; Tim Subler, Versailles, Ohio; Don Verhoff, Ottawa, Ohio; and George Clayton, Quincy, Ohio. The two team members that did not attend the recognition event are: Jeff Harding, Gallion, Ohio; and Steve Stitzlen, Grove City, Ohio.

  189. College honors military, veterans

    United States flag and dog tags photo

    The college honored members of the military and veterans at the CFAES Military and Veteran Student, Faculty and Staff Appreciation Gathering Nov. 2. The event was in support of Veteran's Day, said organizer Ben Carignan, college academic counselor, with the aim of pulling together CFAES military and veteran students, faculty, and staff to extend appreciation to the men and women who have served and are part of the CFAES community.

  190. Columbus, Wooster each named a Tree Campus

    The national Arbor Day Foundation has recognized Ohio State’s Columbus campus and the CFAES Wooster Campus, each, as a Tree Campus USA. For Columbus, it’s the eighth consecutive year to earn the honor; for Wooster, the seventh. In all, the foundation said, 17 colleges and universities in Ohio and 364 throughout the United States have received the award so far this year.

    The Tree Campus USA designation goes to colleges and universities for “promoting healthy trees and engaging students and staff in the spirit of conservation,” the foundation said in a press release. Criteria include having a campus tree advisory committee, campus tree-care plan, and student service project. Ohio State’s and CFAES’ ongoing efforts to warrant the recognition involve faculty, staff, students, and volunteers from the Chadwick Arboretum & Learning Gardens, Secrest Arboretum, Wooster Campus Grounds, and other units on the campuses.

    Read more.

  191. Specht wins OFBF Discussion Meet

    Annie Specht

    Annie Specht, assistant professor of agricultural communication, is the winner of the 2018 Ohio Farm Bureau Young Ag Professionals Discussion Meet. The annual contest tests participants’ subject knowledge, problem solving abilities and personal and small group communications skills.

    Specht won a $1,000 cash award from Nationwide Insurance, an expense-paid trip to the 2018 Ohio Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in Columbus and an expense-paid trip to the 2019 American Farm Bureau Annual Convention in New Orleans, where she will represent Ohio in the national Discussion Meet competition.

    Specht, a Tuscarawas County Farm Bureau member, is also a member of the American Association for Agricultural Education, North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture and the Association for Communication Excellence. She earned two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s degree in agricultural and Extension education at The Ohio State University and her doctorate in agricultural leadership, education and communications at Texas A&M University.

  192. CFAES announces alumni award winners

    CFAES will recognize its 2018 alumni award honorees on March 3 at the Fawcett Event Center.

    Receiving the Meritorious Service Award are Michael Day, Kent Hammond (`72, BS, Horticulture), and Dale Seiberling (`50, BS, `51, MS, Dairy Technology). The purpose of the Meritorious Service Award is to give public recognition to non-alumni and/or alumni of the college who have been singularly significant in the college’s quest for excellence.

    The Distinguished Alumni Award honorees include Clifford Baughman (`59, BS, `69, MS, Agricultural Education), Edison Fowlks (`65, PhD, Plant Pathology), Joel Korte (`87, AAS, Landscape Construction & Contract Technology), W. Kirk Miller (`70, BS, Agricultural Economics), Rohini Desai Mulchandani (`76, PhD, Food Science & Nutrition), and Carl Zulauf (`73, BS, MS, Agricultural Economics). This award gives public recognition to those who have brought distinction to themselves and the college at large through their participation, commitment and leadership.
    International Alumni Awards will be presented to Ming-Tsao Chen  (`77, PhD, Animal Science) and Alexander Grobman (`48, BS, Agronomy).This award is presented to outstanding international agriculture alumni representing, supporting, and promoting the college and The Ohio State University around the globe.
    Young Professional Achievement Award recipients include Kevin Fath (`10, BS, Animal Science) and Nutsuda Sumonsiri (`12, PhD, Food Science & Nutrition). The Young Professional Achievement Award recognizes alumni for their early professional accomplishments. This award provides recognition for these individuals and serves as a stimulus toward further efforts by younger alumni.
  193. Lal: in the NY Times and around the world

    Mr. Stephane Travert (French Minister of Agriculture) discussing with Prof.Lal and Mr Soubeiran

    Rattan Lal, director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center, recently spoke at three international events, was featured in the New York Times and on National Public Radio, and is working on a potential visit to Ohio State from the vice president of Patagonia.

    On Dec. 3, the New York Times Sunday Review included an opinion piece, "Soil Power! The Dirty Way to a Green Planet" by Jacques Leslie, which discusses Lal's research and the scientific research and benefits of sequestering carbon in soil. The next day, Lal participated in a panel discusstion on NPR called "The Ground Beneath Our Feet." Other panelists included David Montgomery, author of "Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations," and Bianca Moebius-Clune from the USDA-NRCS soil health program. The focus was on soil management and restoration to mitigate climate change and advance food and nutritional security.

    The Carbon Management and Sequestration Center has played a large role in COP21, COP22 and COP23, the three most recent Conferences of the Parties. These conferences are held each year by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). UNFCCC COPs assess progress in dealing with climate change, and beginning in the mid-1990s, negotiated the Kyoto Protocol to establish legally binding obligations for developed countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

    Lal was invited to the COP23 Summit in Bonn and was the Keynote Speaker at three global events. First, at “4 Per Thousand,” an event started by the French government after the COP21 Climate Summit in Paris, Lal presented “Soil Organic Carbon for Climate, Food and Peace." The session was attended by policy makers from Europe and around the world.

    At “One World No Hunger in a Changing Climate,” organized by the German Government, Lal presented “Translating Science of Soil Carbon into Policy.” In it he addressed two questions: 1. How to save land, water and energy for nature, and 2. How to incentivize land managers through payments for ecosystem services.

    Danone, the France-based yogurt company, organized an event entitled “There is Hope in Soil” in which Lal presented “The Soil-Centric Agronomic Management." During this event, Lal met the CEO of Danone, the Vice President of Patagonia, and Minister of Agriculture of France.

    Lal is also a founding member of the Board of Adapting African Agriculture, established by the King of Morocco after the COP22.

    In the photo, Stephane Travert, French Minister of Agriculture, left, talks with Lal, right, and Eric Soubeiran, director of Global Nature and Climate for Danone, center.

  194. Faculty and staff increase support for CFAES and university programs

    Photo of Jeff Hattey, Jim Fowler and Greg Davis

    In addition to alumni and stakeholders, faculty and staff donate to CFAES and the university helping reach annual fundraising goals. This past year, 680 CFAES faculty and staff joined their colleagues throughout Ohio State to donate to the university through Campus Campaign.

    Although faculty and staff can donate throughout the year by becoming a member of Chadwick Arboretum, participating in Pelotonia or through other activities, the university ramps up promotions of the campaign in March and April encouraging employees to support the university fund of their choice.

    For the 2017 Campus Campaign, CFAES funds received $231,870 from Ohio State faculty, staff and retirees. CFAES increased the percentage of individuals donating to Campus Campaign from 35 percent in 2016 to 38 percent in 2017.

    There are several departments and units that exceeded their participation goals, and some who went beyond expectations. At ATI, 31 of 42 staff members participated helping them exceed their goal of 45 percent participation; FABE increased participation from 29 percent last year to 56 percent; and Entomology increased from 27 percent last year to 53 percent. OSU South Centers had 100 percent participation far exceeding its goals.

    This year’s campus campaign co-chairs, Greg Davis and Thom Janini, are supported by ambassadors from each department and unit. Ambassadors raise awareness about the campaign, encourage giving, and plan activities to raise funds.

    Jim Fowler, FABE’s ambassador, received a Campus Campaign Ambassador Award for his work to garner support for the campaign. According to Jeff Hattey, CFAES’s representative on the Campus Campaign Council, Jim made a point to reach out to each person in the Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering by personally delivering the campaign letter to their desk. He made it personal by explaining how he planned to contribute.

    The communication that worked best was his attendance at the monthly faculty meeting. During this face-to-face time with faculty, he delivered remaining campaign letters and provided a fund number to write on pledge sheets. The fund was one that many faculty already supported, but did not realize it was considered a contribution to Campus Campaign. Having the fund number provided, as opposed to looking it up, made the giving process very simple to complete.

    A faculty member in Jim’s department stated, "Many of faculty give in so many ways to this university; having Jim take the time to personally talk to us about our gifts was helpful for us to improve our participation in the Campus Campaign."

    Thanks to all of the faculty and staff who participated in Campus Campaign. Your unwavering support to Ohio State makes a difference for Ohioans and beyond.

    In photo are Jeff Hattey, Jim Fowler and Greg Davis.

  195. Three CFAES faculty members awarded Borlaug Fellowships

    Rafiq Islam

    Three CFAES faculty members have been awarded international research fellowships through USDA's Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship Program. By working with a distinguished visiting international scholar from a developing or middle-income country, these CFAES faculty will broaden their own network of international collaborators as well as focus on long-term research endeavors that promote improved food security and economic growth. Recipients include:

    Rattan Lal, Professor and Director, Carbon Management and Sequestration Center, School of Envrionment and Natural Resources is working with Kristine Pascual, Senior Research Specialist at the Philippine Rice Research Institute on “Climate Smart Agriculture: Research wetting-dry production systems to sustain rice yield and reduce methane emissions through improved water and nutrient management."

    Michael Cressman, Assistant Professor, Department of Animal Sciences is working with Thobela Nkukwana, researcher in poultry nutrition at the Agricultural Research Council, South Africa on “Assessing the effects of exogenous enzymes in high fiber diets on the gut health, nutrient utilization, and body weight gains of broilers”

    Rafiq Islam, in photo, Program Director and Research Scientist, Ohio State University South Centers is working with Alimata Bandaogo, Research Specialist at the Institute of Environment and Agronomic Research, Burkina Faso, on “Improving efficiency and profitability of fertilizer use within the framework of integrated soil fertility management for smallholder farmers”.

    The three international researchers will be visiting Ohio State University this Autumn for three months, during which time they will also attend the 2017 Borlaug Dialogue International Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa to witness the awarding of the 2017 World Food Prize.

    For more information on the USDA Borlaug Program, please contact Beau Ingle, Program Manager in the Office of International Programs in Agriculture, at ingle.16@osu.edu

  196. Steel named president of national organization

    Suzanne Steel, assistant director of Marketing and Communications for the college, began her year-long term as president of the Association for Communication Excellence (ACE) at the group’s annual conference in June.

    ACE is an association of communicators, educators and information technologists. The organization offers professional development and networking for writers, designers, editors, videographers, web developers, researchers, professors and others who extend knowledge through communications about agriculture, natural resources, and life and human sciences. Many of the members come from land-grant universities.

    In her year as president, Steel will be leading a search for a new management firm for the organization, preparing the Board of Directors for a strategic planning process, and planning the 2018 conference, which will be held in conjunction with agricultural journalists at the Ag Media Summit in Scottsdale, Arizona.

  197. Transforming Tanzanian agriculture: CFAES faculty train Extension instructors on agribusiness and entrepreneurship

    Tanzanian farmers in a hoop greenhouse

    Food security, poverty alleviation, low agricultural productivity, and youth underemployment in Tanzania can be addressed by encouraging its farmers to become more business and market oriented.

    Although the agricultural sector is Tanzania’s most important sector – 77% of its population depends on agriculture as their main form of livelihood – the country’s agricultural productivity growth is stagnant. This disconnect is of significant concern, considering that the nation’s current population of 48 million is expected to double by 2050 and 65% of the population is under the age of 35.

     “A key to promoting agricultural growth is to transform Tanzanian agriculture from semi-subsistence to a more market-oriented agriculture by linking producers to improved technologies and markets, including value-added links to processors and other higher end market opportunities,” says Mark Erbaugh, Director of the Office of International Programs in Agriculture and Principal Investigator of the project entitled “Improving Rural Outreach Capacity in Tanzania: A Pilot Curriculum Reform Initiative to Increase Relevance of Trainer Training”.

    This notion was recently echoed by Geoffrey Kirenga, Chief Executive Officer of Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SACGOT), a multi-stakeholder partnership aimed at rapidly developing the agricultural potential of Tanzania’s southern region.

    “The emphasis needs to be on increasing smallholder agricultural output and changing Tanzania’s smallholder agriculture from subsistence to commercial farming,” stated Kirenga during his recent testimony to Tanzania’s Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Livestock and Water (Tanzania Daily News, 2017, p. 2).

    To contribute to this transformation, agricultural extension workers working on the frontlines must to be able to advise farmers not only on technical production, but also on how they can manage their farms as a business to be more efficient and profitable.

    This was the focus of a three day workshop delivered at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Tanzania to instructors of extension agents from Tanzania Ministry of Agriculture Technical Institutes (MATIs) and Livestock Training Institutes (LITAs), by Erbaugh, Dave Hahn, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), and Barry Ward, Assistant Professor and the Leader of Production Business Management in Ohio State University Extension.

    The workshop, entitled “Farming as a Business” was designed to enhance the instructional capacity of MATI/LITA instructors by providing course content on agricultural value chains, agribusiness and farm management, and entrepreneurship.

    These three areas were earlier identified as priority areas in which extension agents require enhanced training by farmers, agribusiness employers, and Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Fisheries (MALF) officials during a 2016 skills-gap assessment of frontline extension workers (FEWs).

    Specific topics covered in the workshop included farm record keeping, balance sheets, partial budgeting, business and market plan development, an overview of agricultural value chains in Tanzania provided by Mr. Allen Mhidze from the Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO), and entrepreneurship that highlighted linkages with the value chain.

    Since the training of FEWs occurs at Ministry of Agriculture Training Institutes (MATI) and Livestock Training Institutes (LITAs), the workshop specifically targeted instructors at these institutions by using a training-of-trainers approach to enhance their instructional capacity on these important topics. Attending the workshop were 22 of these instructors from five MATIs, two LITAs, and the Sokoine University Graduate Entrepreneurs Cooperative (SUGECO).  Also in attendance were lecturers from SUA’s Department of Agricultural Extension and Community Development (DAECD).  One of the workshop participants stated that the workshop was quite valuable for MATI instructors and she wished this type of training could be brought to extension workers in the field.

    The workshop was organized in collaboration with Dr. Jeremia Makindara (Ohio State University, ’06, MS, Agricultural Economics), Head of Department of Business Management in SUA’s School of Agricultural Economics and Business Studies.

    The effort was an outgrowth of the USAID-supported Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI) administered by The Ohio State University through the International Programs in Agriculture Office, and received additional support through a 2016 Impact Grant from Ohio State’s Office of Outreach and Engagement

  198. APLU provides grant for online learning

    Illustration with multiple e-learning icons

    ATI faculty received a 2017 Innovative Teaching Award from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) Board on Agriculture.

    In its fourth year, the awards are intended to bolster innovation in the post-secondary teaching of agriculture and related fields.

    The program encourages new faculty to expand their scholarship of teaching and learning by creating projects with more senior faculty from other institutions. This supports institutional collaboration and the adoption of innovative teaching and learning experiences for students at more institutions. Awardees share $3,000 to use on classroom aids, travel, or other project needs in the future.

    “For junior faculty involved, this may be the first monetary award they receive, which, when combined with the mentoring by working with senior faculty on the project, should boost their abilities in the classroom,” said Wendy Fink, APLU Director of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources.

    The winning project was the “Collaborative Teaching Project for Improving Students’ Professional Skills While Learning about the Effects of Cover Crops in Suppressing Weeds in Ohio and Nebraska.” Faculty members included:

    • Deana Namuth-Covert, Professor and Director of Online Education and Outreach, The Ohio State University–Agricultural Technical Institute (ATI)
    • Mao Huang, Post-Doc Researcher in The Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, The Ohio State University
    • Jon Witter, Assistant Professor, Agricultural and Engineering Technologies, Ohio State ATI
    • Ryan Haden, Assistant Professor, agronomy, Ohio State ATI
    • Robert Noonan, Agriculture Instructor, Northeast Community College.

    “We are partnering with Northeast Community College, another two-year institution that teaches similar classes,” said Namuth-Covert. “Through online tools, we'll have students at each institution, and any online students, working together to do the same cover crop experiments. We're hoping this will provide a broader experience for all of our students to work on a project with peers in different geographic locations.” The project will also provide junior faculty with experience in online teaching and multi-institutional educational projects and grants, she said.


  199. Student marketing team finalist in national competition

    Silhouette of corn in field

    There is more value to corn than just its kernels. That is the winning idea created by Ohio State's National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) Marketing Team which include members Grace Dannemiller, Andrea Kackley, Zach Corcoran, Megan Phillaier, Laura Davis, Drew Van Winkle, Garrett Leeds, Jenna Phelps, and advisor Scott Holley. They placed sixth out of 36 at the NAMA Student Competition in Dallas, Texas.

    The team submitted an executive summary, participated in three rounds of competition and presented their ideas to a panel of judges that included marketing and agribusiness professionals.  

    Their idea, The Cob Co. (TCC) would turn corncobs into cash by delivering a complete turnkey solution to farmers, including equipment, harvest support, transportation, conditioning, and merchandising.

    According to the team’s research, only .023 percent of acres of cobs are harvested annually from the near 12.9 million acres of viable corn—that’s $3.62 billion dollars left lying in the fields.

    Due to high equipment costs, low utilization, transportation, and concerns about nutrient depletion, farmers have been unable to capture this value. The student's research confirmed that considerable market demand continues to grow for sustainable products where corncobs can be used, from bedding to biofuels. And, it’s an added revenue stream for farmers facing continued economic pressures and net incomes that are half what they were in 2013.

    “Every team participating in the marketing competition does an excellent job of developing a thorough marketing plan, a process that takes most teams the majority of the academic year to complete,” said Erin Nash, NAMA Careers Committee Chair. “Those teams that advanced to the finals truly did exceptional work on their projects. Each year I am amazed by the talent of these teams. They’re truly an awesome group that we hope will continue in Ag marketing as they begin their professional careers.”

    Among the finalists were The Ohio State University, University of Minnesota and the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.  Third place went to North Dakota State University, second place to the University of Wisconsin in Madison; and first place to California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo.


  200. Two Ohio Staters awarded eXtension grants

    Two of five projects selected for funding through the national eXtension Foundation Innovation Lab are from Ohio State.

    The 4-H BioBand Fitness Tracker project, directed by Robert Horton in 4-H, features a first-of-its-kind 4-H BioBand Fitness Tracker kit with an Arduino microcontroller that connects heart rate, physical activity, and temperature and can operate within the structure of the internet. The project team wants to demystifying the basic principles of technology design and data collection and allow youth, as "Data Scientists," to examine their own fitness behavior, customize their Bio-Band’s data input to fit their physical profile, and compare their experiences with others.

    Mark Light, Extension Educator in Hardin County, will expand the 4-H pilots for Maker Festivals and Tech Wizards to more rural areas across Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Indiana. Wikipedia describes the Maker Movement this way: "Maker culture emphasizes learning-through-doing (active learning) in a social environment. Maker culture emphasizes informal, networked, peer-led, and shared learning motivated by fun and self-fulfillment."

  201. Brian Roe Discusses Food Waste on Town Hall Ohio

    Image of Brian Roe, Right, and, Mike Long, left.

    One of America’s greatest assets is its ability to produce abundant, affordable, safe food. One of our greatest shortcomings is that we waste about 40 percent of the food we produce. That’s 34 million tons of food, every year.

    On the Feb. 25-26 broadcast of Town Hall Ohio, Brian Roe, Van Buren Professor in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics, discussed food waste and its impact on families, communities, industries, and 49 million hungry Americans. Joining him was Mike Long, president of Resource 100, pictured on the left. To listen to the broadcast, go to https://ofbf.org/2017/02/27/food-waste-town-hall-ohio/.

    Town Hall Ohio is a weekly radio public affairs discussion forum, which features high-profile guests covering a wide range of topics and issues of importance to Ohioans. Subjects include government and politics, jobs and the economy, food and food production, education, science and technology, business challenges and social issues. Town Hall Ohio is produced by Ohio Farm Bureau Federation; it airs on WTVN Radio, Columbus, Ohio and additional stations throughout the state.

  202. Stan Thompson Awarded Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant

    Photo of Stan Thompson

    Stan Thompson, professor in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, is the recipient of a prestigious Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant by the U.S. Department of State. Thompson will travel to the Czech Republic where he will be affiliated with the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague from February – April 2017.

    While in Prague, Thompson will teach econometric model building and policy analysis as well as empirical research methods for the social sciences to provide students with practical guidelines for conducting and assessing scientific research. He will also be researching the dairy industry in the Czech Republic and analyzing the economic impact of milks quotas on the dairy sector.

    Anyone interested in the Fulbright Scholar Program should contact Joanna Kukielka-Bla.

  203. CFAES Faculty Awarded Grants

    Image of meeting in Fayette County

    Two CFAES faculty members led teams that were awarded funding for their programs during the Autumn 2016 Connect and Collaborate funding cycle. The Ohio State Sustainability Fund has money available for projects that will help Ohio State campuses become more sustainable. These faculty include:

    • Jacqueline Kowalski, OSU Extension, for her project Community Garden Leadership Initiative.
    • Godwin Tayese Apaliyah, Director, Fayette County Economic Development and Ohio State Community Development Extension Educator, Fayette County, for his project Connecting the Dots to Economic and Cultural Revitalization in Fayette County, Ohio.

    The Connect and Collaborate Grants program awarded more than $300,000 to 12 teams during the autumn 2016 funding cycle. The grants are designed to bring together multiple university and community resources and leverage existing community platforms to develop programs that achieve measurable, positive impacts in communities while advancing the scholarly goals of the university.

    For more information about the programs receiving grants, visit https://oaa.osu.edu/ccgrantsautumn2016.html.

  204. ​Saif named Fellow of National Academy of Inventors

    photo of Linda Saif in lab

    Linda Saif has been awarded the title of Fellow by the National Academy of Inventors. She was one of 175 academic inventors to receive the honor this year.
    The award is given to academic inventors and innovators who have “demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions and innovations that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society.”
    “Dr. Saif has made landmark discoveries and performed innovative research that has benefited agriculture as well as human health,” said Caroline Whitacre, senior vice president for research at Ohio State. “This award demonstrates the ground-breaking research that our faculty conduct at Ohio State.”
    A Distinguished University professor in the Food Animal Health Research Program at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center in Wooster, Saif is an internationally recognized virologist and immunologist. Her work on viral diseases is of critical importance to farm animals, food safety and human health. Her research has led to a framework for understanding how the immune system defends itself against viruses that cause intestinal infections in humans and non-human animals, leading to innovative approaches to vaccines and diagnostics.
    The 2016 Fellows will be inducted on April 6, 2017, as part of the Sixth Annual Conference of the National Academy of Inventors in Boston. In honor of her outstanding accomplishments, Saif will be presented with a special trophy, medal and rosette pin.

  205. Promoting pawpaws’ production potential

    CFAES is working to help Ohioans grow more of a little-known (until now) native fruit. The fruit is the pawpaw—whose flavor one CFAES webpage describes as “sunny, electric, and downright tropical”—while the effort by CFAES’ OSU Extension outreach arm is called Marketing and Orchard Resource Efficiency (MORE) Ohio Pawpaw. It’s a statewide, grant-funded initiative aimed at helping growers grow and sell more high-quality pawpaw fruit. 

    OSU Extension Horticulture Specialist Brad Bergefurd is leading the MORE Ohio Pawpaw project together with Matt Davies, assistant professor in the School of Environment and Natural Resources, who's shown here with a pawpaw tree. Said Bergefurd, “We want to provide unbiased research-based information so farmers can make the best management decisions and maybe cash in on this crop.”

    Read more.

  206. Wooster strategic planning process continues

    The Wooster Campus Strategic Plan continues to progress, Dave Benfield, director of the CFAES Wooster Campus, reported in a recent email to faculty and staff. The Strategic Planning Task Force is taking a “deeper dive” into comments received during public sessions in September and October, he wrote, and subcommittees now are pursuing six areas as part of the plan: Operational Excellence and Resource Stewardship, Civic and Community Relations, Education, Outreach/Extension, Research, and Private-Sector Partnerships. Those areas are coordinated with CFAES’ four grand challenges: Sustainability, One Health, the Rural-Urban Interface, and Preparing the Next Generation of Scientists and Leaders.

    You can find further details and updates on the plan’s website. You’re encouraged to contact any task force member with ideas and suggestions you may have. (Photo: Aerial image of CFAES Wooster Campus, 2016, Ken Chamberlain, CFAES.)

  207. EEDS Major Helps "Green" Women's Final Four

    Volunteers planting tree

    Matthew Griffin, Environment, Economy, Development, and Sustainability (EEDS) undergraduate, is playing a key role in helping Columbus receive the first sustainability certification awarded since 2008 as host of the Women's Final Four college basketball tournament.

    Columbus is pursuing the “Evergreen” status, the highest level given by the Council for Responsible Sport. The Council has been involved in the planning of the sustainability program (outlined below) and will conduct a site visit during the Women’s Final Four.

    "I am leading up the effort on the certification side, so I coordinate with different groups, including the third party group in charge of certifying and the different committees working to see where our efforts match up with their systems and what we can do to get different credits in their system so we get the certification standard we want," Griffin said. "I think people will get excited about the different sustainability efforts. Helping plant trees, restoring basketball courts, and the low impact on carbon and water being emitted in this event."

    The Responsible Sport Certification is a holistic approach to ensure the event considers community, financial, and environmental impacts on the city for true sustainability. The certification criteria include five areas: 1.) Planning and Communications 2.) Procurement 3.) Resource Management 4.) Access and Equity and 5.) Community Legacy.

    Environmental Impact Reduction: With the assistance of the Council for Responsible Sport, Nationwide Arena and the Greater Columbus Convention Center have taken actions to reduce the environmental impact on these buildings while hosting the Women’s Final Four.  Through these intentional efforts, the energy and water needed to execute the operations of hosting the Women’s Final Four games is offset resulting in a neutral impact. Additionally, practices to decrease waste are being implemented therefore reducing the amount of materials being sent to the landfill.

    Event Recycling: During the scheduled tree plantings and the NCAA Women’s Final Four Tourney Town at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, visitors, guests and volunteers will have the ability to recycle their unwanted bottles and cans in recycling containers provided by SWACO. The Convention Center estimates a total of more than 10 tons of waste and recyclable material to be generated during Tourney Town and has set a goal of diverting a minimum of 70 percent of event-generated materials from the Franklin County Sanitary Landfill.
    Tree Plantings: In partnership with the City of Columbus through Branch Out Columbus and SWACO, over 100 trees will be planted at two city parks and in the Arena District. Planting trees offsets the carbon impact of hosting the Women’s Final Four by sequestering carbon and beautifies the community for all to enjoy. These trees will be planted as a lasting legacy for future generations to enjoy. Volunteers can sign-up for the first two plantings at: https://www.experiencecolumbus.com/joinuscolumbus/volunteer/.

    • Planting 1: Friday, March 23; 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.; Walnut Hill Park, 6001 E. Livingston Ave.
    • Planting 2: Saturday, April 14; 9 a.m. to noon; Mock Park, 2548 Mock Rd.
    • Planting 3: Monday, May 14; 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.; Arena District, McFerson Commons

    Sports Gear Drive: In partnership with Columbus City Schools, Nationwide Reality Investors, and The Ohio State University Office of Sustainability, volunteers will collect gently used sports gear, which will then be donated to area schools. These reused items will have beneficial use in the community that might have otherwise been discarded into landfills causing harm to the environment.
    Items needed include:

    • Bats: baseball/softball
    • Gloves: baseball/softball (fielding) and catchers gear
    • Cleats: baseball, football, softball, soccer, track
    • Balls: soccer, volleyball, basketballs, tennis, medicine, footballs, golf
    • Golf clubs and tennis rackets
    • Various Equipment: agility ladders, hurdles, bases, cones, water bottles

    Gear Drive locations include:

    • Grandview Yard/Apartments at the Yard leasing office
    • Flats on Vine leasing office
    • Greater Columbus Sports Commission
    • Experience Columbus
    • Arena District Athletic Club

    If you would like to get involved, visit columbuswff.com.

  208. Undergraduate Researchers Receive Honors

    The 2018 CFAES Undergraduate Research Forum on February 28 attracted 53 budding researchers from the college.

    The event provides a means for undergraduate students to share their research via poster presentations with members and friends of the Ohio State community; recognizes the significant contributions to research by CFAES undergraduates; and facilitates exchange between students, faculty, and the public. Participation in the CFAES event also prepares students for the Ohio State Denman Undergraduate Research Forum.

    Award winners include:

    In Animal Sciences – Nutrition, there were seven posters. Mikaela Disbennett placed first, John Bouranis second, and Ariel Taylor third.

    In Animal Sciences – Animal Health, there were 11 entries. Madeline Schwarz placed first and Erin Hamlin second. Rachel McLaughlin and Julia Rose tied for third.

    In Environmental and Plant Sciences, there were 19 entries. Katherine Denune placed first, Krystal Pocock second, and Jonathan Kubesch third.

    In Food Science, there were nine entries. Karli Van Simaeys placed first, Haley Orwig second, and Daniel Sosh third.

    In Social Sciences, there were seven entries. Brianna Gwirtz placed first, Taylor Klass second, and Olivia Carros third.  

  209. Royalty in the Extension family

    Photo of McCutcheon family

    CFAES, OSU Extension and Hartford, Ohio, will be well-represented in fair circles this year.

    Morgan McCutcheon, daughter of Lisa and Jeff McCutcheon, long-time Extension employees, has been named the 2018 Ohio Fairs’ Queen.

    Morgan will represent each of Ohio’s county and independent fairs as she travels throughout Ohio in 2018.

    Her aim is to visit each fair, attend the Ohio Fair Managers Association (OFMA) District meetings in April, and serve as a member of the OFMA Board of Directors throughout the year. She will also assist with several events and activities during the 2018 Ohio State Fair. During the 2019 OFMA Convention, Morgan will assist with the Queens PMorgan McCutcheon, Ohio Fairs' Queenrogram, and work to facilitate the selection process to name her successor.

    She was named the 2017 Hartford Fair Queen in August and represents the first Hartford Queen to carry the state-wide title.

    She’s also a Buckeye. She’s been taking college courses at Ohio State Newark as part of the College Credit Plus program at Utica High School, and will enter the Columbus campus as a first year student in the fall. She plans to pursue nursing, with a goal of becoming a nurse practitioner.

    Her father Jeff started with Extension in 1995 as the Perry County Agriculture and Natural Resources educator, and is now the regional director for Southeastern Ohio. Her mother Lisa has been the 4-H Youth Development educator in Licking County since 1999. In the photo at the top is the McCutcheon family, including Lisa, Morgan, Jeff, and son/brother Sean.

  210. Ohio State to host first annual Plant Sciences Symposium

    Seedling with bright light above

    How can interdisciplinary approaches improve growers’ profitability?

    The first annual Plant Sciences Symposium at The Ohio State University will address this question and more April 6-7at the Shisler Conference Center in Wooster.

    The theme of this student-driven event is “Planting Profitability using Interdisciplinary Approaches” and will feature these speakers:

    • Dr. Norma Alcantar, Associate Professor at the University of South Florida Department of Chemical & Biomedical Engineering
    • Jim Schwartz, Director of Beck’s Practical Farm Research (PFR) and Agronomy
    • Dr. Arron Carter, Associate Professor at Washington State University Department of Crop and Soil Sciences
    • Dr. Pierce Paul, Professor at The Ohio State University Department of Plant Pathology

    There will also be presentations from selected student speakers and a student poster competition open to both undergraduate and graduate students.

    Both undergraduate and graduate students are eligible for the student competition. Research abstracts are due February 14, 2018, and may be submitted here. Abstracts should describe, in 250 words or less, the study’s background, objectives, results, and impact on the field of study. The top three posters will be recognized and receive cash prizes. Further abstract and poster guidelines may be found here.

    In addition to the poster competition, students may submit abstracts to be considered for an oral presentation. Selected student speakers will receive a travel award and the opportunity to present their work during the symposium.

    Registration is required, but free.  Online attendance via webinar will also be available.  Tours of the Wooster campus research facilities will take place on Friday, April 6 and presentations and the poster competition will take place on Saturday, April 7.  Those interested can either register for one or both days of the symposium. To register or submit an abstract go here. – Stephanie Karhoff


  211. Top Extension Educator: Matt Smith

    fish on ice

    Matt Smith doesn't have to fish for compliments.

    Successful Farming magazine recently included the South Centers-based aquaculturist in a list of the nation's top ten Extension specialists.

    Here's what they said about him:

    "After petroleum, what’s the next greatest natural resource deficit of the U.S.?

    If you said seafood, bingo! Matt Smith, the Extension aquaculture specialist for Ohio State University, is changing that by bringing his aquaculture experience from Alabama and Arkansas (both fish-farming leaders) to the Midwest.

    Ohio State just launched a three year USDA-funded project called Aquaculture Boot Camp for beginning aquaculture or aquaponics (fish combined with soilless plant production) farmers. Applicants dedicate one day a month for a year to learn the business. 

    'Students come to our South Centers for hands-on learning opportunities and even farm tours and internships. This will assist aquaculture expansion in the Midwest and, hopefully, reduce our seafood deficit,' Smith says."

    For the full list of recognized educators, see https://www.agriculture.com/farm-management/10-exceptional-extension-specialists.


  212. FABE cleans up at ASABE awards

    Erdal Ozkan receives honor

    Faculty members and alumni of the Department of Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering were honored in July at the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

    Erdal Ozkan was named a Class of 2017 ASABE fellow, the organization's highest honor. ASABE defines a Fellow as a member of unusual professional distinction, with outstanding and extraordinary qualifications and experience in, or related to, the field of agricultural, food, or biological systems engineering. They possess a minimum of 20 years of active practice in, or related to, the profession of engineering; the teaching of engineering; or the teaching of an engineering-related curriculum and a minimum of 20 years as an active Member-Engineer or Member in ASABE.

    Scott Shearer received the Cyrus Hall McCormick Jerome Case Gold Medal Award which honors exceptional and meritorious engineering achievement in agriculture that has resulted in new concepts, products, processes or methods that advanced the development of agriculture.

    Ann Christy received the Massey-Ferguson Educational Gold Medal Award which honors those whose dedication to the sprit of learning and teaching in the field of agricultural engineering has advanced with distinction our agricultural knowledge and practice and whose efforts serve as an inspiration to others.

    Two alumni were also honored. Sylvia Schonauer, retired from Kellogg Co. was named a 2017 ASABE Fellow, and Matt Darr, now with Iowa State University, received the New Holland Young Researcher Award for outstanding contributions to the advancement of the profession and to stimulate professional achievement.

  213. Rattan Lal to receive 2017 Sustained Achievement Award

    Rattan Lal in corn field.

    Rattan Lal is to receive the Renewable Natural Resources Foundation's 2017 Sustained Achievement Award. The award, to be presented Nov. 15 at the annual meeting of the RNRF Board of Directors in Potomac, Maryland, recognizes a long-term contribution and commitment to the protection and conservation of natural resources by an individual.

    During his 50-year career Lal studied sustainable intensification and climate-resilience of agroecosystems, working to advance global food and nutritional security through soil health management, carbon sequestration, and erosion control. Lal has advanced soil resources science through his extensive accomplishments as a researcher and mentor. He has written 818 journal articles, 485 book chapters, 16 books, and has given 425 keynote presentations on the sustainable management of world soils.

    In addition to teaching two classes at Ohio State, he has mentored 106 graduate students, 55 post-doctoral researchers, and 156 visiting scholars from around the world.

    He has worked with the U.S. Senate to approve Soil Resolution 208 (2008) and has witnessed six congressional hearings regarding soil resources and carbon sequestration. Furthermore, Lal has worked with several heads of state, including the President of Bangladesh (2007-2008), the President of Iceland (2006-2010), Vice President Al Gore (2010-2015), the former Secretary of the Environment of Germany (2010-2015) and the French Minister of Agriculture (2015) to help translate soil science to actionable policies.

    Lal is currently a Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science at Ohio State and serves as the president of the International Union of Soil Sciences, representing 60,000 scientists.

  214. ACEL student selected as national ambassador

    Image of Kelse Brown

    Kelse Brown, of Edgerton, Ohio, was recently selected as a National Teach Ag Ambassador, an outreach program of the National Council for Agricultural Education, led by the National Association of Agricultural Educators to promote the agricultural education profession.

    Brown, a fourth year student, will be one of 12 future agriculture teachers from across the nation who will serve as National Teach Ag Ambassadors over the next year. The selected students were chosen from a nationwide pool of applicants.

    The primary goal for the ambassadors is to encourage others to consider a career as an agriculture teacher, by sharing their passion and enthusiasm with others. Specifically, Brown and his fellow ambassadors will represent the National Teach Ag Campaign at the 2017 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Ind. October 25-28. The ambassadors will also work with local and state leaders in agricultural education to encourage students to pursue a major in agricultural education throughout their year of service.

    “I am excited to see Kelse selected to promote the agricultural education profession not only in Ohio, but to audiences across the nation,” said Tracy Kitchel, professor and chair of the Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership at The Ohio State University. “Ohio State has been cultivating future educators for more than 100 years. Kelse will be a great representation of our agriscience education program to others who have a passion for educating youth about the agriculture industry.”

    The Teach Ag Ambassadors will also develop a cohort of future and current agriculture teachers who will inspire the next generation of leaders, problem solvers, entrepreneurs and agriculturalists while at National FFA Convention and throughout the year. The ambassadors will promote the National Teach Ag Campaign through emails, social media, presentations and other various outlets.

    The demand for agriculture teachers remains high due to retirements, current program growth, new programs opening, and current teachers leaving to explore other opportunities. The 12 selected ambassadors will share their passion for teaching agriculture in an effort to address the perennial demand. They will also have the opportunity to build their own professional network and develop leadership and communication skills they will need in their future careers as agriculture teachers.

    Brown will return to Ohio State in August to continue his degree in agriscience education. He is the son of Christopher and Christine Brown and a graduate of Edgerton High School.

    The agriscience education major at Ohio State prepares its students to acquire a license to teach agricultural science in secondary high schools in Ohio and across the country, with extensive training in agricultural science, educational psychology, instructional methods, and youth development. For additional information on the agriscience education major, visit acel.osu.edu or call 614.247.6358.

    The National Teach Ag Campaign is funded by the CHS Foundation, DuPont Pioneer, Growth Energy, and BASF as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. The campaign is designed to raise an awareness of the career opportunities in agricultural education, encourage others to consider a career as an agriculture teacher and celebrate the positive contributions that agriculture teachers make in their schools and communities. For more information about the National Teach Ag Campaign, visit http://www.naae.org/teachag.

  215. University honors faculty members

    Ohio State President Drake speaks to honorees.

    On March 27, the university honored faculty members who had recently received national or international awards, or who had been recognized for achievements that reach outside or across academic disciplines.

    College honorees included:

    Fulbright Scholar, U.S. Department of State
    Joseph Campbell
    Research Associate Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources

    Fellow, American Phytopathological Society
    Anne Dorrance
    Professor, Plant Pathology

    AAAS Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
    Guo-Liang Wang
    Professor, Plant Pathology

    Fellow, The International Union of Food Science and Technology
    V.M. “Bala” Balasubramaniam
    Professor, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering

    Fellow, National Academy of Inventors
    Linda Saif
    Distinguished University Professor, Food Animal Health Research Program

    Excellence in Agricultural Law Award for Academia, American Agricultural Law Association
    Peggy Hall
    Assistant Professor, Agriculture and Natural Resources

    Distinguished Syngenta Award, American Phytopathological Society
    Pierce Anderson Paul
    Associate Professor, Plant Pathology

    Elsevier Atlas Award, Elsevier
    Rattan Lal
    Distinguished University Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources

    Agricultural and Earth System Sciences Award, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomiq
    Rattan Lal
    Distinguished University Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resource

    Distinguished Rural Sociologist, Rural Sociological Society
    Linda Lobao
    Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources

    National Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences, U.S. Department of Agriculture
    Ann Christy
    Professor, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering

    Regional Excellence in College and University Teaching Award for Food and Agricultural Sciences, U.S. Department of Agriculture
    Emily Buck
    Associate Professor, Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership
    Brian Lower
    Associate Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources

    Highly Cited Researchers 2016– Agricultural Sciences, Thomson Reuters
    Rattan Lal
    Distinguished University Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources




  216. Highlights from the 2017 Undergraduate Research Forum

    Photo of student and poster

    The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences hosted the 14th Annual CFAES Undergraduate Research Forum on  February 28 in the Nationwide/Farm Bureau 4-H building. Forty-four undergraduate student researchers from CFAES and the School of Environment and Natural Resources shared their research in a poster presentation format with faculty, staff, fellow students, and invited family members and guests, with 42 faculty judges evaluating and ranking the presentations.
    In addition to a noon luncheon, all student participants received a $50 gift card to Barnes & Noble for their efforts. Prizes were also awarded to the top-ranked researchers in each category (1st $100, 2nd $50).
    The following students were recognized.

    Animal Sciences – Animal Health
    1st        Kendal Searer, Advisor Lisa Bielke
    2nd       Shannon Kelley, Advisor Monique Pairis-Garcia
    3rd        Michell Garrett, Advisor Kim Cole
    3rd        Ellen Schwieterman, Advisor Kim Cole

    Animal Sciences – Nutrition
    1st        John Bouranis, Advisor Richard Bruno
    2nd       Makenzie Thorpe, Advisor Sheila Jacobi
    3rd        Jiwon Kim, Advisor Kichoon Lee

    Environmental and Plant Sciences
    1st        Hailey Tiarks, Advisor Suzanne M Gray
    2nd       Ashlee Balcerzak, Advisor Steven Lower
    3rd        Andrew Wilk, Advisor Bill Peterman
    Food Science
    1st        Megan Hoehn, Advisor Monica Giusti
    2nd       Anna Schmenk, Advisor Luis Rodriguez-Saona

    Social Sciences
    1st        Craig Berning, Advisor Brian Roe
    2nd       Donald Gase, Jr., Advisor M. Susie Whittington
    3rd        Frances Nicol, Advisor M. Susie Whittington

    New this year for those who attended the forum was a digital display of those who shared their work prior to the forum.  If you would like to see these submitted ePoster’s, visit http://go.osu.edu/cfaesposters.

  217. USDA awards Ohio State with Multiple Specialty Crop Block Grants

    Photo of eggplant, greenbeans and apples

    Ohio garnered $527,624.47 for ten projects from USDA's Specialty Crop Block Grants, with Ohio State receiving half of those grants, including:

    1. Ohio State University scientists will identify value of juice of new and existing Ohio-grown apple varieties for artisanal hard cider, collaborate with the Midwest Apple Improvement Association to select unique Midwest cider varieties, and facilitate networking opportunities among Ohio apple growers and cider makers enabling local connections in the burgeoning craft cider industry.
    2. Ohio State University South Centers will help new and existing blueberry growers expand their acreage, improve harvest efficiency, extend harvest season, and boost nursery production by conducting a statewide testing of grafted blueberry “trees,” high soil pH tolerant cultivars, and the best blueberry production practices, and disseminating research results to stakeholders through social media, growers meetings, field days, and development of educational materials.
    3. Dr. Francesca Peduto Hand, the Ohio State University (OSU) specialist for ornamental pathology, has teamed with Ohio nursery growers and the OSU’s C. Wayne Ellett Plant & Pest Diagnostic Clinic to pinpoint research-based approaches to solving a disease of Winterberry holly that is reducing yield of saleable plant material, income, and opportunities for market expansion. Building upon previously funded research, this project aims to complete our understanding of the epidemiology of the fungal pathogens associated with the disease in order to identify appropriate, well-timed, cost effective management strategies that could be easily implemented by Ohio nursery growers. The outcomes of this research may also allow new or smaller growers who have not previously grown Winterberry to expand their markets by adding this crop to their production.
    4. The Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) is dedicated to the advancement of technology, innovation, and novel business approaches to enhance the food and agricultural sectors of the economy and develop strategies for increased food accessibility. Staff has more than 25 years of experience in food processing, value-added product development, and food safety protocols. In addition, for the past 6 years CIFT has engaged in urban agricultural initiatives in an attempt to present options for food security and address food deserts within neighborhoods. This has been primarily through production of fresh product for immediate consumption. This project would address two different goals by providing improvements in the aggregation and distribution of specialty crops as well as diversification and expansion of production and processing through a value-added product. In alignment with the integrated mission of the Mid-Ohio Foodbank (MOF) and the Food Innovation Center of The Ohio State University, an innovative product line has been developed that utilizes seasonal produce from the MOF core list to reduce the loss of produce with limited shelf-life. The product line Ohio
    Sourced and Sauced (OSS) integrates fresh local produce, such as broccoli, tomatoes, squash, zucchini, apple and orange, with traditional spices as shelf-stable sauce formulations.
    5. The Ohio State University will conduct research and outreach programs to reduce the impact of soilborne diseases on production of locally grown, high-value vegetable crops. Two disease management strategies, anaerobic soil disinfestation and grafting, will be optimized for Ohio farms, farmers will be educated on these technologies through specially designed workshops, and a new soil diagnostic testing service will be developed to identify key soilborne diseases.

  218. Stan Smith Receives Industry Service Award

    Photo of angus cross

    Stan Smith, Ohio State University Extension, received the Industry Service Award from the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association during their annual meeting on January 21.

    This award is presented each year to an individual who has contributed to the betterment of Ohio’s beef cattle industry. Recipients of the award are selected based on actions they have taken throughout their career in academia, Extension, government, agri-business, etc.

    Long-time editor of the Ohio Beef Cattle Letter, Stan Smith’s interest in cattle began at a young age growing up on his family’s farm in Canal Winchester. Stan has worked for Ohio State University Extension in Fairfield County since 1986, and has been a member of the OSU Beef Team since its inception nearly 25 years ago. Throughout his time with Extension and the OSU Beef Team, Stan has coordinated a weekly newsletter providing information about the latest research and updates in the beef industry to beef producers across the state. Stan was also a part of the OCA Board of Directors that took the initiative to ask for a second dollar on the beef Checkoff. Recently, he received an ODA appointment to serve on the Ohio Beef Council.

  219. Richard Dick elected president of Soil Science Society

    Photo of Richard Dick

    An Ohio State University scientist who led the discovery of the biophysical processes behind a native shrub intercropping system that could transform agricultural practices in parts of sub-Saharan Africa has been elected to lead one of the nation’s premier natural science organizations.

    Richard Dick, professor in the School of Environment and Natural Resources, was elected the 2018 president of the Soil Science Society of America, which includes a three-year commitment on the SSSA Executive Council, starting January 2017. The school is in the university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

    Founded in 1936, SSSA is the professional home for more than 6,300 members and more than 1,000 certified professionals dedicated to advancing the field of soil science. It is one of the most prestigious and influential natural science organizations in the world. SSSA works to enhance the sustainability of soils, the environment and food production by integrating diverse scientific disciplines and principles in soil science.

    “Richard is one of the leading soil scientists in the world, having advanced our knowledge on soil as a resource to deliver environmental services and promote food production,” said SSSA President Harold van Es. “Because of extensive international experience, his leadership promises to elevate the science and applications of soils globally.”

    Dick is an Ohio Eminent Scholar working in the field of soil microbial ecology. His internationally recognized research seeks to understand microbial communities and processes that drive soil functions and deliver ecosystem services. His work has applications for the environment and agriculture.

    He is perhaps best known for his 15 years of research in the Sahel region in West Africa, investigating rhizosphere biology and hydrology of interplanted crops and shrubs. Under his leadership, a team of African, French and U.S. scientists discovered that local shrubs perform hydraulic lift of water from subsoil to surface soil. The research showed this phenomenon has profound impacts on soil hydrology, microbiology and biogeochemical processes that dramatically increase crop production and enable rainfed crops such as millet to resist in-season drought periods in the semi-arid Sahel. Millet and other crops affected by the research are major sustenance crops for the populations of these regions.

    Dick’s work in this area has changed the paradigm of how semi-arid ecosystems function and has major implications for the region’s agriculture by utilizing intercropped shrubs as local nutrient and water reservoirs and to remediate degraded landscapes.

    His research has been supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Agency for International Development.

    Dick has been an invited speaker worldwide for conferences and workshops and has been professionally recognized as a Gordon Conference Lecturer and Fulbright Scholar. He is a Fellow of the Soil Science Society of America and American Society of Agronomy and was executive director of 2016’s international Enzymes in the Environment conference.

    Dick previously has served in appointed and elected positions in SSSA, including as chair of the Soil Biology and Biochemistry Division, as a two-term member of the board of directors, and as chair of the Budget and Finance Committee. For six years, he served as associate editor of the SSSA Journal and is currently editor-in-chief of the journal Applied Soil Ecology.

  220. Mark Erbaugh retiring as International Programs in Agriculture director

    After serving as director of International Programs in Agriculture for CFAES since 2010 and in various other roles with that office since 1984, J. Mark Erbaugh has announced he will be retiring on Jan. 31, 2020.

    During his 35-year career at Ohio State, Erbaugh developed and implemented transdisciplinary international grants and contracts in over 14 countries; designed and coordinated international student degree training programs; administered short-term technical training programs; and coordinated Peace Corps recruiting activities on Ohio State’s Columbus campus with the goal of furthering the globalization of CFAES teaching, research, and outreach programs.

    “Please join me in thanking Dr. Erbaugh for his service as director of International Programs in Agriculture and wishing him all the best,” Gary Pierzynski, CFAES associate dean for research and graduate education, said in a Dec. 12 email announcing the news.

    With Erbaugh’s retirement, Luis Canas, associate professor in CFAES’ Department of Entomology, will begin serving as interim director of International Programs in Agriculture.

  221. Suzanne Gray, who’s all about aquatic biodiversity, wins NACTA Educator Award

    Suzanne Gray, assistant professor of aquatic physiological ecology in CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources, recently received the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) 2019 Educator Award. The award, according to its website, recognizes individuals “whose efforts represent the very best in agricultural higher education.”

    Gray was recognized in a ceremony June 21 at the NACTA annual meeting in Idaho. The conference’s theme was “Connecting to STEM.”

    Read more. Read a 2018 Q&A with Gray.

  222. ATI dairy herds are top producers

    Holstein cow licking its mouth

    Ohio State ATI’s outstanding dairy herds are winning praise. On March 22, its Holstein Herd was recognized at the Ashland Wayne Annual Dairy Banquet as the top two-time (two milkings per day) producing Holstein Herd for Wayne County.

    The herd averages 26,046 pounds of milk, with 1096 pounds of butterfat and 822 pounds of protein.

    The herd was also recognized for having two cows on the top 10,000 list nationally. This list is determined by their total performance index.

    Ashland and Wayne counties track herd samples on a monthly basis. They determine the awards based on Dairy Herd Improvement Association records.

    “The Holstein Herd is a very high genetic herd,” said Brandon Lawwill, assistant herd manager.  In addition to genetics, “A lot of it is about how the cows are managed and fed. We have recently made improvements to the parlor by getting new equipment for the cows. This provides an environment for the cows to milk more.”

    Lawwill said that this nurturing environment also contributes to the Jersey herd’s success. It was a mere five pounds shy of being the top jersey herd, with 19,179 pounds of milk, 945 pounds of butterfat and 697 pounds of protein.

    Lawwill also credits the students and how well they care for the cows.

    “The effort of the students in the program who do things properly on a daily basis to help make the cows comfortable has been the success here that’s allowed us to win an award,” said Lawwill.

    The herds are run nearly entirely by students at ATI. In addition to the hands-on work, students also provide ideas for management that are often implemented into the routines on the farm. – By Miranda Lipton



  223. CFAES Names New Student Ambassadors

    Illustration of hands holding phones, peace sign, love sign, "new generation" sign.

    The college announced its new team of student CFAES Ambassadors in February.
    The new ambassadors are:

    • Kady Davis, a sophomore majoring in Animal Sciences from Carrollton, Ohio
    • Philip Eberly, a sophomore majoring in Food Science and Technology from Wooster, Ohio
    • Madison Fomich, a sophomore majoring in Food Science and Technology from Louisville, Ohio
    • Connor Frame, a junior majoring in Agribusiness and Applied Economics from Lore City, Ohio
    • Morgan Hunter, a junior majoring in Sustainable Plant Systems from Assumption, Illinois
    • Emma Lynne Johnson, a freshman majoring in Community Leadership from Williamsport, Ohio
    • Jack Korenyi-Both, a sophomore majoring in Animal Sciences from Youngstown, Ohio
    • Taylor Lutz, a sophomore majoring in Agriscience Education from Bucyrus, Ohio
    • Amanda Morgan, a junior majoring in Agribusiness and Applied Economics from Worthington, Ohio
    • Cody Myers, a sophomore majoring in Agriscience Education from Jamestown, Ohio
    • Meredith Oglesby, a sophomore majoring in Agricultural Communication from Hillsboro, Ohio
    • Shem Pond, a sophomore majoring in Agribusiness and Applied Economics from Woodstock, Ohio
    • Milan Pozderac, a sophomore majoring in Agriscience Education from Fredericktown, Ohio
    • Ross Schroeder, a sophomore majoring in Agricultural Systems Management from Leipsic, Ohio
    • K. C. Stower, a junior majoring in Biological Engineering from Findlay, Ohio
    • Meghann Winters, a junior majoring in Agricultural Communication from Old Washington, Ohio

    In all, there will be 34 ambassadors for the 2018-2019 academic year.  

  224. Two CFAES graduate students receive Presidential Fellowships

    Award cup on top of books

    Two CFAES graduate students have been awarded The Presidential Fellowship by Ohio State’s Graduate School.

    The honorees include Thomas Delomas, who focuses on fisheries and wildlife science in the School of Environment and Natural Resources, and Emile Gluck-Thaler, who focuses on fungal gene clusters in the Department of Plant Pathology.

    Thomas Delomas

    In a letter of support for Delomas, Eric Toman, graduate studies committee chair for the Environment and Natural Resources Graduate Program, wrote, “Thomas’s profoundly positive letters of support from eminent scholars in fisheries and aquatic ecotoxicology corroborate what was evident to our committee: that Thomas is an exceptional young scholar with a demonstrated track record of success beyond what is typical among doctoral students in his field. This is evident in his scholarly achievements, including his nearly perfect grade point average as well as through his high number of presentations and publications (seven published or in press with two more in review). Thomas is the first author on five of these papers, including the two currently in review. His publication record is three to four times greater than what is typical for ENRGP students. Additionally, he has seven articles in preparation, of which he is the first author on five, and he is credited along with his advisor for the invention of commercial techniques for the production of certain ornamental fish.”

    Delomas’s advisor Konrad Dabrowski wrote, “He was extremely well-organized in his research and within days after completion of the experiments, he quickly calculated, analyzed, and presented the data in graphical format. Consequently, Thomas was able to demonstrate his involvement in professional scientific societies and presented results of his research at several national and international scientific meetings for the past two years. He received the best oral presentation award at World Aquaculture meeting in San Antonio among over 150 graduate students.”

    Emile Gluck-Thaler

    About Gluck-Thaler, Pierluigi Bonello, graduate studies chair for Plant Pathology, writes, “I am also a member of Emile’s advisory committee, and likewise I’ve been extremely impressed by the quality of this young man, who definitely places in the top 1% of all graduate students I’ve dealt with in my career, including all students I have advised directly and as part of many advisory committees. I would venture to say that, in terms of sheer intellectual power and overall knowledge, Emile is pretty close to the point where I would have no problems calling him a peer.”

    Bonello goes on to say, “Dr. Jason Slot, Emile's advisor, points out that Emile is currently leading a project involving researchers from five institutions, which is part of a multi-year project focusing on dissecting the toxin production pathways used by the largest class of plant disease-causing fungi. Dr. Slot adds, 'Due to his focused efforts and resourcefulness, the analyses Mr. Gluck-Thaler proposed and conducted will probably be the first paper to come out of this major effort, and will have a significant impact on our understanding of the diversity and evolution of fungal toxins.'"

    The Presidential Fellowship gives fellows one year of full-time financial support. To be eligible, nominated students must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.6 for all Ohio State graduate course work, have completed all degree course work by the time the fellowship is activated, and have passed the candidacy examination (doctoral students) by the nomination deadline.

  225. Accessibility: making Extension events welcoming to all


    Most of us have seen statements on advertisements for events and programs that say “If you have questions concerning access, wish to request a sign language interpreter or accommodation for a disability, please contact . . .”

    If you do not need accommodations for a disability, you may never have thought about what an accommodation is, why someone might need it to attend and participate in an event, or to even be able to get into the building where an event is held.

    It may seem like a lot of trouble and expense to ensure that all programs and events are accessible and welcoming to everyone, but to the 14 percent of Ohioans who have a disability, knowing that they can participate in an event or program (or get inside the building where the program is held) is vital to being an active member of their community.

    Being proactive when planning your event or program ensures that everyone will be welcome, and can eliminate the need for last minute adjustments to make your event accessible.

    Why do ALL OSU Extension events and programming need to be accessible?

    • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal law that requires businesses and events which are open to the public to be accessible to people with disabilities
    • The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 requires government and public institutions (and those who receive federal money) to ensure that all of their services, facilities, events and programs are accessible
    • Architectural and Barriers Act requires equal access to public services (public housing and transportation) and money for vocational training

    Planning an accessible event or program

    All advertisements and promotional materials should include contact information to request accommodations/modifications, sample statements are available at the Ohio State ADA Coordinator’s Office site: https://ada.osu.edu/resources/statements.htm.

    If you do not ask for accommodation requests, accessibility will be assumed.

    An accommodation or modification is an alteration to the way a program is offered, so that a person with a disability can attend and participate.  

    Examples include:

    • Providing reading materials in alternate format (electronic, audio, braille, large print)
    • Holding the event in an accessible building (ramps or lifts if there are steps, accessible bathrooms)
    • A path or walkway that is clear of obstructions or debris, and is smooth and firm enough for a wheelchair or other mobility device
    • Alternate communications (closed captioning, American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter)

    Before you plan your event, review this accessibility checklist.

    If you receive a request for accommodations, who pays for accommodations?

    While many accommodations are free or low cost (scheduling events in accessible buildings, providing reading materials in large print, reserving seats in the front row for a person with limited vision), you may be asked for an accommodation that does cost quite a bit – such as an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter.

    • The person requesting the accommodation cannot be charged for the accommodation (beyond the same fee that any other participant would pay).
    • The cost of the accommodations is paid for by the organization hosting the event.
    • Example: If a Master Gardener volunteer requests an ASL interpreter, Ohio State University Extension must hire an interpreter (sometimes two interpreters, depending on the length of the program). The cost hierarchy is: county, then Extension, then CFAES, then (if the college cannot pay) Ohio State ADA Office.
    • If the ADA Office is asked to pay, they will ask questions about the budget of the county, Extension, and CFAES to ensure that there really is no budget to pay for the interpreter, and they will cover the cost in order not to discriminate against the person with the disability (and will encourage CFAES to include possible costs for accommodations, i.e. ASL interpreters, in the next budget).
    • If an outside organization is hosting an event at an OSUE property, the outside organization would be responsible for arranging and paying for the accommodations.

    The ADA is long and complicated, and you may not want another factor to consider when you are planning your event. Extension and the Ohio AgrAbility Disability Services Coordinator, Laura Akgerman, can help with development of best practices, solutions and ideas for making Extension programming and information accessible to individuals with disabilities. Laura has been with OSU Extension and Ohio AgrAbility since May 2016, and has an educational and career background in disability services in higher education, and in the community. For more information please contact Laura Akgerman, or 614-292-0622. – Laura Akgerman

  226. Donnermeyer receives Lifetime Achievement Award

    Joe Donnemeyer receives lifetime achievement award

    Joe Donnermeyer, professor emeritus in SENR, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Division of Critical Criminology and Social Justice at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology (ASC) in Philadelphia on November 16.

    The Division of Critical Criminology and Social Justice is the largest in ASC, with more than 800 members. The award is presented to a member of the Division for “sustained and distinguished scholarship, teaching and service in the field of Critical Criminology.” 

  227. Richard Moore honored by American Anthropological Association

    Richard Moore, emeritus professor in the School of Environment and Natural Resources and adjunct emeritus professor in the Department of Anthropology, will receive the Public Policy Award from the American Anthropological Association in November.

    According to a letter from AAA president Alisse Waterston, the Public Policy committee was particularly impressed with Moore's cross-disciplinary research, his outreach to high school and college students through a new curriculum, and his influence on water quality programs and overall environmental policy. "Indeed, the committee felt that your work on these issues truly represents the sort of policy contributions that deserves recognition through this award," she wrote.


  228. The Office of International Programs in Agriculture shares successes

    Peace Corps in Paraguay

    The recently released 2016 annual report for the Office of International Programs in Agriculture shares that CFAES has:

    • 25 international agreements with institutions in 18 different countries
    • 434 international interns and trainees placed from 92 countries
    • Ranked 9th in the U.S. in the number of alums serving as active Peace Corps volunteers
    • 232 international students enrolled
    • 14 Distinguished International Scholars hosted through USDA's Scientific Exchange of Programs
    • 15 international delegations welcomed from 11 different countries.

    See the full annual report at https://ipa.osu.edu/sites/international/files/imce/Annual%20Report%202016%20compressed_0.pdf.










  229. College Faculty Honored by University

    Three college faculty members recently received prominent university awards.

    Brian H. Lower, School of Environment and Natural Resources, and Luis Enrique Rodriguez-Saona, Food Science and Technology, each received the Alumni Award for Distinguised Teaching. This award annually recognizes a maximum of ten faculty members for their teaching excellence.  Students, faculty, and alumni may nominate faculty; and a committee of students, previous recipients, and alumni choose the recipients.

    Recipients are recognized with a $5,000 honorarium made possible by gifts from The Ohio State University Alumni Association, University Advancement, and the Office of Academic Affairs. In addition, the Office of Academic Affairs awards an increase of $1,200 to each recipient’s base salary.  Members are also inducted into the Academy of Teaching.

    Ann Christy, Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering and the College of Enginnering, received the Distinguished Scholar Award. Each year the university recognizes and honors six faculty members who demonstrate scholarly activity, research or other creative works which represent exceptional achievements in their fields. Recipients of the award receive a $20,000 research grant and a $3,000 honorarium to pursue their scholarly activity.

  230. Fostering Inclusiveness in CFAES Learning Communities

    Photo of CFAES students in front of Ohio stadium

    Post-election, one of the college’s Learning Community Resident Advisors noticed offensive comments and actions taking place on her floor, including the hanging of the Confederate flag in multiple locations and stickers saying “Trump that Bitch.” The advisor wanted to foster a safe, inclusive environment for all of the students, so she reached out to Pamela Thomas in the student services college office for help. Tracy Kitchel, Kathy Lechman, Tyler Agner and Kaitlyn Murray offered a session for the Learning Community around “How we build community.” Each attendee responded anonymously, on paper, to the prompt “When it comes to being around (living, working, taking classes with) people who are different from me, I worry about  . . .” The concerns were gathered and redistributed so that another resident would present the concern on the paper as their own. The activity was followed by discussion and group input on how to overcome the perceived worries and fears. The residence hall advisor evaluated the session as a great first step and hopes to offer another program during Spring semester.

  231. Bala Balasubramaniam honored by Asian Institute of Technology

    Pictue of AIT alumni award

    Bala Balasubramaniam was awarded the 2016 Asian Institute of Technology Alumni Association (AITAA) Distinguished Alumni award in the category of Academic and Research Excellence.

    He was nominated by the AITAA United States Chapter.

    This award follows an honor he received in August when he was elected a fellow in the International Union of Food Science and Technology.

    Balasubramaniam received his Master's degree in post-harvest technology from AIT. AIT is located in Bangkok, Thailand.

  232. Recent awards and achievements

    highest honor from aps

    Larry Madden, Distinguished Professor of Plant Protection in CFAES’ Department of Plant Pathology and an international authority on plant disease epidemiology, has received the Award of Distinction from the American Phytopathological Society (APS). The award is the highest honor bestowed by APS, the world’s largest professional organization for plant pathologists. APS said the award is presented only on rare occasions to persons who have made truly exceptional contributions to plant pathology. Only 15 other individuals have received the award in APS’ 111-year history. Madden was given the award on Aug. 4 at the APS annual meeting in Cleveland. Read more.

    Farm to School grant

    A Whole Community Inc., a Wooster-based nonprofit organization whose collaborators include the Wayne County office of OSU Extension and faculty and students from the Wooster campus, has received a $99,214 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm to School Grant Program. The grant project, whose collaborators also include Northwestern Local Schools and Wooster City Schools, aims to increase local produce on the schools’ menus and create a flourishing farm to school culture in the schools and community. Read the USDA’s press release about the grant program and a list of all the awardees (scroll to Page 41 for more on the Whole Community project).

    PAAR facility honor

    The University Laboratory Safety Committee at Ohio State has selected CFAES’ Plant and Animal Agrosecurity Research Facility (PAAR) to receive a 2019 Excellence in Safety Award in the group award category. The award program recognizes students, staff, and groups making considerable contributions to improving lab safety at Ohio State. The winning PAAR team members included an administrative group—Juliette Hanson, Kaitlynn Starr, Alden Sewell, and Willie Coblentz—and a research group—Chang-Won Lee, John Ngunjiri, and Michael Abundo. Together, the team developed high-level safety plans and standard operating procedures to achieve USDA certification to operate as a select agent facility. PAAR, a highly secure biocontainment building located on the Wooster campus, is one of only three Biosafety Level-3 Ag (BSL-3 Ag) facilities in the United States. Read more.

    fruit book award

    Gary Gao, small-fruit specialist with OSU Extension and The Ohio State University South Centers, received the 2019 Outstanding Book Award from the American Society for Horticultural Science in the organization’s annual Outstanding Educational Award competition. The award was for the Midwest Home Fruit Production GuideOSU Extension bulletin 940. Gao was the editor and a co-author of the book. Co-authors also included Ron Becker, Mike Ellis, Steve Prochaska, Celeste Welty, and Roger Williams. Now in its third version, the book has sold more than 5,000 copies in 32 states.

  233. ATI instructor honored by Catholic Commission

    image of stick figures, multi colored, holding hands around world

    Jenny Fischer Derksen, an instructor at Ohio State ATI, received the Michael Berken Peace and Justice Award from the Catholic Commission of Wayne, Ashland, Medina counties at its 31st annual Pope St. John Paul II, Proclaimer of Justice Gala and Silent Auction at St. Stephen Parish in West Salem.

    Derksen was nominated for the award by Jeff Stewart, director of the Immigrant Worker Project (IWP), where Derksen volunteers as English as a Second Language program coordinator.

    The IWP came to life as a result of churches in rural areas of the state realizing how many non-English speakers were filling their pews. “The rural community didn’t really have a lot of services for them,” Derksen said in an article in the Wooster Daily Record on April 20.

    That’s where Derksen and other volunteers, workers, and interns come in.

    “She embodies the Gospel spirit of being a neighbor and welcoming the stranger,” according to a release from the commission, “especially our area migrant neighbors who go unnoticed in northeast Ohio until immigration concerns and fears arise at the state or federal level.”




  234. AEDE Ph.D. Candidate to Receive Fellowship in Regional Science

    Daniel Crown

    Daniel Crown, an AEDE Ph.D. candidate is the winner of the Eighteenth Annual Benjamin H. Stevens Graduate Fellowship in Regional Science.

    The Fellowship will provide a 2018–19 Academic Year stipend of $30,000 to support Crown in his dissertation research entitled, “Foreign-Born Graduates and Innovation at Domestic Institutions: Evidence from an Australian Skilled Graduate Visa Program.”

    The research will investigate the effect of a unique Australian skilled visa program on the innovative output of domestic research institutions. The visa program grants foreign-born graduates temporary residency, post-graduation, and is one potential pathway to permanent residency. The results will be of interest to policymakers around the world as they consider implementing or refining skilled immigration policies.

    Crown’s doctoral research is supervised by Professor Mark Partridge, Swank Chair in Rural-Urban Policy.

    Chair of the Selection Committee, Mario Polèse, Emeritus Professor at the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique-Urbanisation, Université du Québec, details why Daniel Crown’s proposal stood out among an extremely strong field of 36 candidates for the 2018 competition:

    “Daniel’s proposal topic goes to the heart of one the main conceptual and empirical challenges in regional science: measuring knowledge spill-overs between skilled workers. Does the presence of skilled workers, foreign-born graduates in this instance, boost the productivity of other workers and, by the same token, their propensity to innovate? To answer the question, Daniel combines a unique dataset, drawn from Australian administrative files, for the full population of approved skilled visa applicants with institution-level data on innovation and start-ups. The use of micro-data allows Daniel to follow the mechanics by which the presence, after graduation, of foreign-born graduates in Australian universities influences the innovative output of domestic researchers.

    The Selection Committee was equally impressed by the methodological rigor demonstrated by the proposal. Daniel’s empirical strategy overcomes the potential bias of high-skilled foreign-born students sorting into high-quality research institutions by the introduction of instrumental variables and the use of fixed effects regression models. His preliminary findings, reported in the proposal, show a positive impact on the productivity of domestic researchers.

    Finally, the policy-relevance of Daniels’s research requires little comment in a period in which immigration and its presumed impacts are high on the political agenda, not only in North America but around the world.”

    The Fellowship is awarded in memory of Dr. Benjamin H. Stevens, an intellectual leader whose selfless devotion to graduate students as teacher, advisor, mentor, and friend continues to have a profound impact on the field of regional science. Fundraising efforts to increase the Fellowship’s endowment are ongoing. Donations should be sent to: The Stevens Fellowship Fund, First Financial Bank, Attn. Trust Department, 1205 S. Neil Street, Champaign, IL 61820. Checks should be written to The Stevens Fellowship Fund. Donations may also be made by credit card through the NARSC website at www.narsc.org/newsite/donations2.php.

    This most recent Stevens Fellowship competition was judged by a Selection Committee composed of: Daoqin Tong, Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, Arizona State University; Elena Irwin, Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, The Ohio State University; Mario Polèse, Urban and Regional Economics, Université du Québec, Chair; Amanda Weinstein, Economics, The University of Akron; and Elizabeth Mack, Geography, Michigan State University. The Stevens Fellowship Committee administrates the Stevens Fellowship Fund on behalf of the North American Regional Science Council; its members are: Tony Smith, Chair; David Plane, Secretary; Michael Lahr, Treasurer; Janet Kohlhase; and Neil Reid, Executive Director of NARSC.

    The application deadline for the Nineteenth Annual Stevens Graduate Regional Science Fellowship is Feb. 15, 2019. Full submission guidelines will be posted at www.narsc.org/newsite/awards-prizes/stevens-graduate-fellowship/.

  235. Grad student wins national video award

    Woman receiving flowers

    Jaclyn Fiola, a graduate student in Horticulture and Crop Sciences, won the American Floral Endowment's #FlowerLoveVideoContest sponsored by Asocolflores and funded through the Floral Marketing Research Fund (FMRF). See her video at the bottom of the newsletter.

    More than 50 flower lovers from across the country submitted creative videos for this contest that featured and promoted the use and giving of fresh flowers. Entries included skits, animation, surprise moments, artistic montages and testimonials.

    Fiola's entry, "Let Happiness Bloom," won the grand prize, which included $4,000. It features various people receiving flowers on different occasions — including birthdays, graduationa, holidays, and "just because" — and the joy on their faces after receiving the special gifts.

    "As a student studying horticulture, it means a lot to be recognized and I'm grateful for the opportunity to promote the floral industry and the gift of flowers," Fiola said.

    "I believe videos like these can tell a story that both informs and encourages people to buy more flowers."

    The contest was created based on results from the 2016 FMRF-funded study "Marketing Tactics to Increase Millennial Floral Purchases," also sponsored by Asocolflores.

  236. CFAES students span the globe

    CFAES students have traveled to all seven continents through the college's Education Abroad program, according to the organization's annual report released in December.

    It includes updated statistics about participation and scholarships. Did you know: 

    • About 40 percent of CFAES students study abroad, compared with 20 percent of university students.
    • In 2016-2017, CFAES awarded more than $75,000 to students in education abroad scholarships.
    • Several new endowments have been established by generous donors.
    • CFAES is the only college on campus with two full-time education abroad specialists who both serve on the Office of International Affairs team of Education Abroad Coordinators.
    • Two new programs were offered for the first time: an exploration of Darwin’s study of evolution in England and a collaborative program with the College of Engineering in Tanzania.
    • During the 2016-2017 academic year, 28 different faculty and staff members led education abroad experiences.
  237. Hatzakis receives Young Scientist Award

    The International Union of Food Science and Technology (IUFoST) honored Emmanuel Hatzakis, Food Science and Technology, with its Young Scientist Award on Nov. 29. The IUFoST Young Scientist Award recognizes an individual in the initial phases of her or his career for the potential to make outstanding scientific contributions to the field of food science and technology and the potential for future scientific leadership.

    Hatzakis’ research interests include applications of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Spectroscopy in food science and nutrition. Hatzakis has published 29 articles in peer-reviewed journals, has authored one book chapter and with colleagues developed a patent. He is developing novel analytical tools for food evaluation and applies NMR spectroscopy to discover compounds with high commercial and nutritional value.

    He also has developed high value food products from food waste. A characteristic example is “AvoColor”, a natural food color additive in the yellow-red spectrum, extracted from avocado seeds.

    IUFoST is the global scientific organization representing more than 300,000 food scientists and technologists from more than 75 countries.

  238. Ohio State well represented in World Food Prize Wallace-Carver Fellows

    Image of Christina Allen

    Four Ohio State students–three from CFAES–were among 29 across the country who received a prestigious 2017 USDA World Food Prize Wallace-Carver Fellowship. The program offers the most promising college students in America the opportunity to collaborate with world-renowned scientists, policymakers and public servants through paid fellowships with USDA.

    This summer, the fellows were stationed at USDA research centers and field offices across the country to analyze agricultural and economic policy; assist in the management of food, nutrition and rural development programs; and take part in groundbreaking field and laboratory-based research.

    Mariah Cox, food science and technology, at the Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center, said, "I was excited to work for the USDA on tough issues such as the pandemic disease, cancer, and figuring out how cancer is linked with diet. I feel our research has led us one step further in combating this disease."

    Jane Hulse, agricultural communications, placed at the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research in Peoria, Illinois, said, “I enjoyed learning more about pulses (a category that includes all beans, peas, and lentils) and how they can be made into health-promoting food ingredients."

    Caleb Mathias, plant pathology major also placed in Peoria, said, “I was excited to dive in to the world of chemical engineering and assist in creating bio-products that will help keep our drinking water clean of harmful pesticides and move us towards a sustainable future."

    Christina Allen, in the photo, human nutrition major, was placed at the National Animal Disease Center in Ames, Iowa. “I learned so much in such a short time period. My supervisors were very supportive and committed to teaching me during my fellowship. I have gained hands on experience that I know I will be able to utilize in my future education and career," she said.

  239. Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference videos are available

    photo of no-till corn

    If you had to miss the Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference in March, good news: videos of the speakers are now available online. Find information about everything from phosphorus management to weed control to narrow-row corn.

    Randall Reeder, retired Extension agricultural engineer, said you can find the 65 videos at ctc.osu.edu. Also available are videos from a recent no-till event at the farm of Dave Brandt. Find those at OhioNotillCouncil.com.

  240. Mario Miranda Named AAEA Fellow

    Mario Miranda teaching a class

    Mario Miranda has been named a 2017 Agricultural & Applied Economics Association (AAEA) Fellow. He is one of five members who will be honored and recognized at the 2017 AAEA Annual Meeting in July, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.

    Miranda was nominated by Joseph W. Glauber, International Food Policy Research Institute, and J. Scott Shonkwiler, University of Georgia. Their nomination cited his unique and pioneering research in the area of computational economics and risk management, most notable being Miranda’s path-breaking work in computational economics, exemplified by his book, Applied Computational Economics and Finance. This book – published by MIT Press, one of the leading publishers of advanced books in Economics – received endorsements from internationally renowned economists and has been adopted as a required or supplementary textbook in graduate economics courses at many leading universities. According to Google Scholar the book has received 867 citations through 2016.
    In addition, Miranda is the lead developer of CompEcon: A Matlab Toolbox for Analysis of Computational Economic and Financial Models. Designed for the numerical analysis of dynamic economic and financial models, it has evolved into a lasting contribution to the economist’s toolbox.
    Miranda’s professional record exhibits a rare balance of path-breaking academic research, high-quality applied research, and innovative classroom teaching. Agricultural and Resource Economist Wally Thurman’s quote included with the nomination reads, “Miranda is one of those rare economists who makes fundamental contributions to the professional toolkit – and educating his colleagues in their uses – while at the same time engaging in practical relevant substantive research. He is a methodologist, teacher, and researcher of the first rank.”
    Miranda has also made significant practical research contributions in agricultural policy, including more than two dozen stochastic computer simulation models that have been used for policy and market analyses by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

  241. ATI Equine Center Recognized in Hoof Beats Magazine

    close up photo of horse hooves

    The excellent programs, top notch facility, highly trained staff and dedicated students are what attracted Desiree Seeloff, journalist for Hoof Beats Magazine, to The Ohio State Agricultural Technical Institute Equine Center.

    A learning center like no other, this facility contains a state-of-the-art breeding lab, a hot and cold wash rack, a tack room, a feed room and a storage area for hay, an indoor and outdoor arena, and stalls for ATI’s horses and for clients’ horses. The magazine described the center as the perfect facility for students to interact with horses and learn about the entire horse industry.

    The Equine Center at ATI is run by Karen Wimbush, Ph.D., assistant professor and technology coordinator; herd manager Aspen Adams; assistant herd manager Cheryl Murphy; and students, who are responsible for running and managing the daily activities taking place on the farm.

    Two distinctive equine programs are offered: Horse Production and Management and Animal Science Horse Specialization.

  242. Faculty, staff honored at Extension's annual conference

    The awards lunch represents a highlight of Ohio State University Extension’s annual conference, which took place in early December.

    “The faculty and staff recognized this year exemplify the ongoing efforts of OSU Extension to provide relevant, high-quality programming to the people of Ohio,” said Roger Rennekamp, director. “Each of these individuals displays a commitment to continuous quality improvement and innovation much needed in a rapidly changing world. The high quality of their work helps to create a standard of excellence to which others in the organization aspire.”

    The list of winners:

    ESP Friend of Extension Award
    Hugh Earnhart – Mahoning County
    Shelen Stevens – Wood County
    Ashtabula County Farm Bureau

    ESP Retiree Service Award
    Susan Crusey

    Extension Support Staff Excellence Award
    Teresa Funk

    Charles W. Lifer Excellence in 4-H Award
    Jill Stechshulte

    Steve D. Ruhl Outstanding Agriculture and Natural Resources County Extension Educator Award
    Bruce Clevenger

    Raymond A. Schindler Excellence in Community Development Extension Award
    Eric Romich

    ESP Excellence in Extension Award
    Pat Brinkman


  243. CFAES Students to Serve on the Agriculture Future of America Student Advisory Team

    Monica Pennewitt

    CFAES Seniors Micah Mensing and Monica Pennewitt are motivated and determined to make a positive impact on the world.

    From Martin and Wilmington, Ohio, respectively, the two students were recently selected as Agriculture Future of America Student Advisory Team members.

    Pennewitt, in the top picture, majors in plant pathology and Mensing is studying agricultural education.

    AFA is a leader and professional development organization for collegiate leaders and young professionals. Providing leader development, intern support and scholarships, AFA seeks to be a catalyst in the preparation of a new generation of agriculture leaders. Pennewitt, Mensing, and their fellow team members serve as ambassadors between AFA and their college campuses and AFA’s corporate partners.Micah Mensing

    “I have learned so many career skills and gained so many experiences through AFA. There are many things that a classroom cannot teach you. I feel AFA helps to build up leaders and provide great networking opportunities for students and professionals across America,” Pennewitt said.

    Pennewitt, Mensing, and the other eight team members were selected through a competitive application process to serve as AFA’s student voice and represent their peers on a national level.

    “I value my relationship with AFA because it has allowed me to develop relationships with people from all parts of the agriculture industry,” Mensing, pictured at right, said. “AFA has also allowed me to travel beyond the borders of Ohio, allowing me to gain national perspective of the agriculture industry.” 

    A major component of the Student Advisory Team’s responsibilities is the planning and delivery of the 2018 AFA Leaders Conference. Held Nov. 1-5 in Kansas City, Missouri, this event is AFA’s core leader development program and over 800 delegates from across the nation will be selected to attend.

    About AFA

    AFA builds bridges for young leaders to foster engagement and innovation in food and agriculture. With program participation increasing 52 percent in the last five years, AFA leader development programs have impacted 17,000 college leaders and young professionals from more than 200 colleges and universities throughout 43 states since its inception in 1996. AFA has awarded more than $9 million in academic and leader development scholarships. For more information about AFA, visit www.agfuture.org or contact Megan Karlin at megan.karlin@agfuture.org.


  244. CFAES student wins USDA Student Diversity Program honor

    Haylee Zwick

    Senior Haylee Zwick came to the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) with a solid grasp on agriculture’s importance to society.  She also possessed the foresight to know that a degree in ag business and applied economics would provide her with a diverse set of career opportunities.  “Farming is the seed that has sown the path of progress and led to an endless array of career opportunities,” said Zwick.   

    She shared that sentiment in her winning essay that landed her a spot among 29 other undergraduate and graduate students from across the country at the Student Diversity Program at the USDA’s 94th Annual Agricultural Outlook Forum.  Zwick heads to Virginia in February to learn about contemporary agribusiness, future trends, scientific research, and agricultural policy in today's real world environment. 

    While at the forum, Zwick hopes to learn more about the policy side of agriculture and develop a deeper understanding on how policies like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) affect US agricultural interests.  

    “We will be meeting with policy makers, producers, and industry professionals,” said Zwick.  “And hopefully working together to provide solutions to the biggest issues in our industry.”

    Even though Zwick has another semester until graduation, she has already gained valuable experience toward a career in the industry.  She is getting ready to move to Enid, Oklahoma in May for her second summer internship with Archer Daniels Midland where she will work once again as a commodity merchandiser.  Last summer, while stationed in Mendota, Illinois, she learned about market impacts on grain prices and how to utilize that information to make smart decisions and mitigate risk in creating contracts with farmers.

    “As I gained confidence in my abilities through the help of invaluable mentors, I began to build relationships with farmers and work with them to market their grain,” said Zwick.  

    Zwick also learned first-hand the importance of diversifying grain contract portfolios and the significance of educating farmers on their upside margin potential. She returned to Ohio State in the fall understanding that a career in agriculture is more than just a job but a way of life. 

    “It is a chance to lead a life of significance and make positive impact on generations to come.”