Purdue Agriculture InFocus
February 2018
Purdue Ag People
Purdue Ag in the News
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From the Dean
Karen Plaut

Invisible Acts of Kindness Change the World.  That was the title of Catherine Bertini’s keynote address at this year’s Ag Alumni Fish Fry.  Catherine’s eloquent speech affected many of us as we remember some of the people who have helped us throughout our lives. At Purdue, this happens every day. Our staff consistently work behind the scenes to make a difference and help this college succeed. For example, approx-imately 100 volunteers help every year with the Fish Fry. Chef Hubert Schmieder (who will turn 90 next year) and Howard and Barb Doester, all Purdue retirees, have volunteered their services for 110 combined Ag Alumni Fish Fry events! The way our volunteers give freely of their time to make the Fish Fry extra special every year should be inspiring to us all, young and old alike.

Purdue Agriculture faculty members do wonderful work, but it is extremely rare, in our college or anywhere, that one person accomplishes great things totally on his or her own. Our staff support the faculty in their research programs and doing critical day-to-day work in offices, laboratories and fields. The Purdue Ag Center superintendents and staff work in various locations around the state to grow crops or produce livestock under many different conditions so we can bring that knowledge to Indiana farmers.  Extension staff in all 92 counties work with local community members to address farm issues, prevent drug addiction, instruct individuals with diabetes on preparing healthy meals, and help young children develop skills and nurture their passions through 4-H. On campus, staff train graduate and undergraduates on cell culture or molecular biology techniques. They help students complete scholarship applications and advise them on courses and career options. Our staff run programs in elementary schools to excite the next generation of Purdue students. They fix our computers, build our websites, help us manage our budgets, communicate to the rest of the world about the great things we are doing, make memorable events, and provide administrative expertise day in and day out.

These individuals work behind the scenes to support the University, faculty, undergraduate and graduate students and other staff, and what they do is critical to the mission of our college and our university. To me, what makes our staff special is the way they own their jobs, the pride they have in Purdue and in what we do. We often hear accolades for our faculty, but we all know that behind every successful faculty member is a cadre of staff who have impacted many through their invisible acts of kindness that change the world. Thank you to all our staff.  You make a difference.


All the best,
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Purdue Ag People
Drew Lugar

Graduate Research Spotlight: Drew Lugar

The Graduate Research Spotlight highlights graduate students and their work. This month’s spotlight is on Drew Lugar, Animal Sciences.

Yang Yang

Plant Sciences Institute welcomes new Director of Digital Phenomics

Dr. Yang Yang joined the Purdue Institute for Plant Sciences in January as Director of Digital Phenomics. 

Mark Russell

YDAE adopts new name reflecting global mission

After an extensive study, the Purdue Department of Youth Development and Agricultural Education has formally adopted a new name and will now be known as the Department of Agricultural Sciences Education and Communication.

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Maria Marshall

Purdue Today Profile: Maria Marshall

Maria Marshall, professor of agricultural economics and director of the Purdue Initiative for Family Firms, uses her position to help family-owned businesses succeed. As part of her work, she researches issues relevant to family-run businesses and uses the results to make sure those businesses not only flourish but stay in the family.

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Jenna Rickus

Purdue Today Profile: Jenna Rickus

Jenna Rickus is professor of agricultural and biological engineering and biomedical engineering and associate vice provost for teaching and learning. She works with colleges, faculty, and the ancillary academic units to drive toward innovative, transformative teaching and undergraduate student success. 

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Anjali Iyer-Pascuzzi

The Scientist features Anjali Iyer-Pascuzzi

The Scientist, a print and digital publication that covers a wide range of topics central to the study of cell and molecular biology, genetics, and other life-science fields, recently wrote about the work of Anjali Iyer-Pascuzzi, Botany and Plant Pathology. The publication featured Dr. Iyer-Pascuzzi as a “scientist to watch.

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Certificate of Distinction Winners

Ag Alumni Association honors six with Certificate of Distinction

Six noted graduates and contributors associated with the College of Agriculture were named as recipients of the Ag Alumni Association’s highest honor, the Certificate of Distinction. They received the awards at the Ag Alumni Fish Fry on Feb. 3.

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Boiler Key

Time to sign up for BoilerKey

All employees will need to begin using BoilerKey, Purdue’s two-factor authentication system, by April 1. BoilerKey is an additional layer of security providing protection for your career account when accessing sensitive personal data. Click below for sign-up info and AgIT help sessions.

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Nominations open for Alexander Spirit of the Land Grant Mission Award

Nominations are invited for the 2018 Corinne Alexander Spirit of the Land Grant Mission Award. This award recognizes an individual faculty member for who has successfully developed an integrated program that advances all aspects of Purdue’s core land-grant missions of discovery, engagement, and learning in the fields of Agriculture, Health and Human Sciences or Veterinary Medicine nationally and/or internationally.

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TEAM Award call for nominations

Since 1995, Purdue Agriculture has recognized an outstanding collaborative effort within our programs and across the university. Nominations are invited for the 2018 Purdue Agriculture TEAM Award. The award will be presented at a ceremony in the fall, and the winning team will be awarded $10,000 for program support. Nominations must be sent electronically to Becky Rice at rdr@purdue.edu by March 29. Click below for TEAM Award guidelines and required nomination cover sheet.

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Call for nominations, Unsung Diversity Hero Award

The Diversity Action Team in Agriculture (DATA) is soliciting nominations for the 2018 Unsung Diversity Hero Award. Nominations are due to Melissa Funk (mjfunk@purdue.edu) in the Office of Multicultural Programs by 5 p.m. EST February 23, 2018. Click below for more information and nomination form. Please direct questions to Dr. Michael Wilcox (wilcox16@purdue.edu) or Dr. Shaneka Lawson (shaneka.lawson@gmail.com).

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Awards and Recognitions
Kevin Gibson
Kevin Gibson, Botany and Plant Pathology, received Purdue’s 2018 Dreamer Award. The award goes to an individual or organi-zation whose contri-butions embody Dr. Martin Luther King’s vision of service and further the University’s commitment to divers-ity and inclusion. 
Brad Kim
Brad Kim, Animal Sciences, was selected to receive the 2018 Outstanding Young Researcher Award from the Midwest Section of the American Society for Animal Science.
Bob Nielsen
Bob Nielsen, Agronomy, received the 2018 Indiana Crop Improvement Associa-tion Distinguished Career Award for his work in service to Indiana Agriculture.
Suzanne Nielsen and Chris Oseto
Suzanne Nielsen, Food Science and Chris Oseto, Entomology, were named inaugural Purdue 150th Anniversary Professors. The designation recognizes dedication to exceptional teaching and mentoring. More
Leeanne McGiveron
Leeann McGiveron, AgIT, has been selected to serve as a panelist representing higher education for the Business Relationship Management (BRM) Institute to support World BRM Week.
Brad Shelton, Left, with Tim Schwab
Brad Shelton, superintendent of the Feldun Purdue Ag Center, was named Outstanding Young Cattle Producer by the Indiana Beef Cattle Association at the IBCA convention in January. Brad is pictured receiving the award from IBCA’s Tim Schwab.
JasonTower and Family
JasonTower, super-intendent of the Southern Indiana Purdue Ag Center, received the Merit Award from the American Forage and Grassland Council. Pictured are son Jake Tower, wife Erin Tower, daughter Abby Tower, AFGC President Robert Shoemaker, Jason, and Miles Kuhn presenting the award on behalf of the Indiana Forage Council.
Useful to Usable logo
The Useful to Usable (U2U) team received the 2017 Indiana Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence from the Indiana Department of Environmental Man-agement. U2U team members: Linda Prokopy, Melissa Widhalm, Larry Biehl, Sarah Church, Otto Doering, Laura Esman, Dev Niyogi, Paul Preckel, Hans Schmitz, Carol Song, Lan Zhao. More
Caitlinn Lineback
Purdue Agriculture student Caitlinn Lineback, Food Science, has been selected by the United States Department of Agriculture to attend the USDA’s 2018 Agricultural Outlook Forum. As a winner of the USDA Student Diversity Program, she will receive a weeklong trip to Washington, D.C. and attend the USDA’s largest annual meeting on Feb. 22-23.
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Purdue Agriculture in the News
Extension Annual Report

Purdue Extension releases 2017 annual report online

Purdue Extension has posted its 2017 annual report online, highlighting the ways in which Extension educates and empowers people throughout Indiana and promotes statewide economic vitality.

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Jian-Kang Zhu

Study: Hormone keys plant growth or stress tolerance, but not both

Plants that grow well tend to be sensitive to heat and drought, and plants that can handle those stresses often have stunted growth. Plant scientist Jian-Kang Zhu has found the switch that creates that antagonism, opening opportunities to develop plants that exhibit both characteristics.

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Ag-Celerator Logo

Purdue Ag-celerator fund awards $100,000 to two plant sciences startups, announces next proposal submission dates

Purdue Ag-celerator, a plant sciences innovation fund, awarded a total of $100,000 in investments to Gen3Bio Inc., an enzymolysis process that produces biochemicals through algae extraction, and Progeny, an image processing software designed to convert rapidly drone images into crop management data.

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Center for Food and Agribusiness logo

Purdue’s ASTA Management Academy to focus on seed industry

Purdue’s Center for Food and Agricultural Business is partnering with the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) to present the 2018 ASTA Management Academy, March 5-9 in West Lafayette. The academy focuses on the practical application of general management concepts that are critical to the long-term success of seed firms.

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Ag Alumni Seed logo

Ag Alumni Seed to fund sophisticated new root scanner at Purdue

Ag Alumni Seed, a Purdue University-affiliated seed technology company, has made a $900,000 gift to fund the purchase of a sophisticated computed tomography (CT) root scanner for Purdue’s new controlled environment plant phenotyping facility.

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Purdue researchers release white paper on Indiana forest management issues

A team of forest and wildlife researchers from the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources has published a white paper addressing three critical questions in the ongoing discussion about management of Indiana state forests.

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Sea Grant workers

Purdue directs Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant administration

Purdue University now administers the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant College Pro-gram (IISG), previously managed by the University of Illinois, effective Feb. 1. New IISG director Tomas Höök, a fisheries biologist in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, leads the administration.

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Dates and Deadlines

February 23: Nominations due for Unsung Diversity Hero Award

March 2: Nominations due for Corinne Alexander Spirit of the Land Grant Mission Award

March 23: Distinguished Agriculture Alumni Awards reception and convocation

March 28: College of Agriculture faculty meeting

March 29: Nominations due for TEAM Award

April 25: Purdue Day of Giving

For more dates and deadlines, check the Purdue Agriculture calendar.
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University News

Provost's Office seeking nominations for Morrill Awards

The Office of the Provost is seeking nominations for the annual Morrill Awards, which recognize West Lafayette campus faculty at the rank of professor for outstanding career achievements. The deadline to submit nominations is Feb. 28.

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Ideas Festival to be centerpiece of Purdue sesquicentennial celebration

A yearlong festival of ideas will be the centerpiece of Purdue University’s sesquicentennial celebration in 2019 as the university looks forward to what the next 150 years will bring for Indiana’s land-grant institution.

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Purdue University Global website updated with cleaner look and feel, more content

Purdue University Global's website has a new cleaner look and feel. The site also includes information on several of the university’s schools such as the School of Business and Information Technology, the School of Health Sciences, the School of Nursing and the Concord Law School.

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Boiler Up Against Hate and Bias Graphic
Report Hate and Bias
Purdue University is a community where diversity is valued and incidents of hate and bias are not tolerated. Students, faculty, staff, and campus visitors who feel that they have been the victim of a bias related incident (or who have witnessed a bias related incident) are encouraged to report it online at www.purdue.edu/report-hate or to contact the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities at 765-494-1250. Your report can remain anonymous if you wish. Remember, if it is an emergency situation that requires immediate medical or emergency services attention, please call the Purdue University Police Department at 911 or 765-494-8221.
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Purdue Agriculture InFocus
Editor: Dinah L. McClure (dmcclure@purdue.edu)
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