Deanna Behring, director of international programs in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, has begun a one-year term as president of the Association for International Agriculture and Rural Development. She received the gavel from outgoing President Mike McGirr at the group's 50th annual meeting held recently in Washington, D.C.
The USDA Cochran Fellowship Program sponsored this group of dairy professionals who traveled to Penn State from the Republic of Georgia and Turkmenistan. Under the leadership of Dr. Alex Hristov, the group spent two weeks learning about dairy herd management methods and techniques related to breeding, nutrition, and animal health.
Most college students originally enrolled in their studies following high school graduation, but Penn State senior and food science major Steve Bookbinder took a different path. Bookbinder spent two years at the Culinary Institute of America, and another two years working in the food industry, before deciding to take his experience to the next level. He enrolled in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences to better understand the food industry, specifically the meat industry.
Two Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences graduate students -- each from different backgrounds and primary areas of study -- graduated this spring with something in common. Both gained valuable international experience and earned dual degrees that make them stand out as they embark on their professional careers. Jonathan Dumas and Kristal Jones were enrolled in the International Agriculture and Development dual-title degree program, known as INTAD, which provides students with international perspectives and expertise to strengthen their primary graduate degree.
When Mark Brennan became the UNESCO chair in rural community, leadership and youth development at Penn State in 2013, he articulated a call to action for groundbreaking research, teaching and applied programs for the betterment of young people and communities worldwide. Today, Brennan and two of his fellow UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) chairs from Ireland announced a major event to further that agenda. The UNESCO Symposium on Youth Civic Engagement and Leadership through Sport and Recreation will be held Aug. 28 at Croke Park Stadium in Dublin, Ireland, in conjunction with the American football game between Penn State and the University of Central Florida, scheduled for Aug. 30 at the stadium.
Junior Carolyn McDonald wants to teach students in Haiti’s orphanages how to create jobs for themselves and become entrepreneurs. McDonald, a community, environment and development major, is the mastermind behind the Haitian Youth Team initiative, a non-profit enterprise to educate children in agriculture and business. The project’s goal is that children leave the orphanage ready and able to create and sustain their own food-related businesses.
The Peace Corps recently hired Penn State alumnus and returned Peace Corps volunteer Charles Cascio at the Peace Corps for the Mid-Atlantic Regional Office in Washington, D.C. Cascio, 27, will serve as a recruiter in Virginia, promoting awareness of Peace Corps programs and serving as a liaison for volunteer applications.
Penn State programs that foster collaboration between the College of Agricultural Sciences and agricultural universities in Ukraine will get a boost as the result of a gift from a local family. George and Nina Woskob, of State College, have pledged $100,000 to support the Woskob Ukraine New Century Fund, an endowment established by George Woskob's parents, real estate developers Helen and Alex Woskob.
Samuel Duo, like many Liberians in the 1990s, was forced to flee his home country and seek refuge in Ghana to escape the terrors of the First Liberian Civil War. The civil war displaced over a million Liberians like Duo into refugee camps in neighboring countries. Entire villages were emptied as people fled. The war destroyed a once-viable economic infrastructure, and spread to Liberia’s neighbors, destabilizing a region that already was one of the world’s most marginal. To make matters worse, the war severely damaged the nation’s agricultural sector. Productivity plummeted, especially as people fled their homes, and agricultural value chains were left under-developed.
Innovation is key when dealing with issues such as poverty, food security and conservation, according to Dana James, a recent graduate of the College of Agricultural Sciences. In May 2013, she graduated with dual degrees in environmental resource management and in community, environment and development. She also minored in international agriculture, and in watersheds and water resources.
WPSU’s occasional series “Beyond the Classroom” takes a look at learning beyond university walls. Today Kelly Doyle is a junior double majoring in “Community, Environment and Development” and “Environmental Resource Management” with a minor in “International Agriculture.” She tells us about how those studies came to life on her recent trip to Central America.
When it comes to social change, Kate Ortbal doesn’t mind getting her hands dirty, whether that’s in the dry clay of a rural village in Honduras or in the depths of computer databases at a nonprofit in Washington, D.C. The Schreyer Honors College senior has brought that same dig-in-and-get-it-done approach to her academic pursuits. Ortbal chose not to study in an established program in just one of Penn State’s academic colleges but instead brought together areas in two colleges -- Engineering and Agricultural Sciences -- to focus on social entrepreneurship.
To junior Rob Ritson, African wildlife was the stuff of books and documentaries, not college experience. But a semester in Tanzania turned the exotic ecosystem into a place where he could bring his education from the classroom to the field. Field research is what drew Ritson to Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. Growing up in a family of hunters, he became fascinated by game management. "I knew that this program would allow me to do exactly what I want to do -- work outside with and study animals," he said
Picture this. The temperature outside is a scorching 120 degrees but the house you are living in has no air conditioning. You take a shower on a hot summer day, step foot outside, and immediately start dripping in sweat. Abe DeHart doesn’t have to try hard to imagine what that would be like. He lived it while studying abroad in India during what turned out to be the hottest summer in 65 years.
Several parasites and pathogens that devastate honeybees in Europe, Asia and the United States are spreading across East Africa, but do not appear to be impacting native honeybee populations at this time, according to an international team of researchers.
The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program recently announced the complete list of winners for the 2014–15 academic year. The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship is a distinguished undergraduate scholarship initiative that provides up to $7,500 a year for college sophomores and juniors in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering. This competitive award is granted to up to 300 students nationwide.
When people hear that Kate Thompson went to Madagascar last summer, they think she stepped into a cartoon adventure. And Thompson will agree that the lemurs she was studying for her honors thesis are indeed cute and cuddly. But her study of the species has a serious purpose.
Graduate students Laura Goodfield, Sarah Muse, and Liron Bendor share their research with the international community and make connections during 10th Annual International Symposium on Bordetella.
As greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture rise worldwide, a Penn State researcher is leading a new international project aimed at helping to reduce such emissions from livestock production.
Paige Castellanos, a doctoral candidate in rural sociology and international agriculture and development in the College of Agricultural Sciences, has been honored as the recipient of the 2014 W. LaMarr Kopp International Achievement Award for graduate students.