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2013

Student Stories: Environmental major studies marine issues in Bonaire
December 18, 2013
Alexandra Lukasiewicz got an up-close look at the oceans' mysteries while she studied abroad in Bonaire. A senior environmental resource management major in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, she spent four months -- from August to December 2012 -- in a program offered by the Council on International Educational Exchange designed to get students to work independently on the Caribbean island.
College of Ag Sciences students receive internship awards
December 18, 2013
Ten Penn State students have been selected as College of Agricultural Sciences Alumni Society 2013 Internship Award winners. The award, which includes a $760 stipend, was established to encourage students to enroll in internship courses offered within the College of Agricultural Sciences. Three of these awards went to students who completed international internships in Poland, Kenya, and Italy.
Queen bee's honesty is the best policy for reproduction signals
November 25, 2013
Queen bees convey honest signals to worker bees about their reproductive status and quality, according to an international team of researchers, who say their findings may help to explain why honey bee populations are declining.
Industrialized agriculture brings change in Turkey
November 14, 2013
We've all heard versions of the story, and many of us have relatives or ancestors who were a part of it. Small farmers, the story goes, are being squeezed out of business by large-scale, "industrial agricultural" corporations. Forced to buy patented, more expensive but higher-yielding hybrid seeds and the fertilizer and pesticides they require from multinational conglomerates, farmers harvest larger crops but at the price of rising debt. It is sometimes portrayed as a David and Goliath morality play -- with Goliath winning -- but the reality is much more complicated.
Professor leads project to breed beans resistant to climate stresses
November 14, 2013
With support from a $5 million grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development, an international team led by Jonathan Lynch, professor of plant nutrition in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, will establish the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Climate-Resilient Beans. The project will employ novel techniques to accelerate breeding programs for the common bean aimed at conferring traits that can increase yield under heat and drought stress.
Project helps African youth become haymaking entrepreneurs
October 30, 2013
A project spearheaded by scientists in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences and Uganda's Makarere University is helping African youths establish businesses and generate income. And these young people, in turn, are providing services that can help farmers improve dairy nutrition and increase milk production.
Penn State dairy faculty train international dairy professionals
October 24, 2013
Pennsylvania-Australia collaboration focuses on controlling wild hogs
September 23, 2013
According to the latest estimates, Australia has more wild hogs than human beings, perhaps more than 23 million. No one is certain how many wild hogs roam Pennsylvania -- mostly escapees from commercial hog-hunting preserves and their offspring. But both commonwealths need to control and perhaps eliminate feral pigs, which are a highly destructive species, according to Theodore Alter, professor of agricultural, environmental and regional economics in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.
Fall 2013 International Agriculture Programs Speaker Series
September 2, 2013
We are pleased to announce the second annual offering of the College of AgSci’s International Programs Speaker Series for Fall 2013. This year the series will be Tuesday mornings, with coffee at 8:15am, a short presentation starting at 8:30am and ending at 9am, with the opportunity for those who want to and are able to continue discussing over coffee after 9am.
World Food Prize Student Scholarship 2013 - Applications Due September 6
August 12, 2013
Want to rub shoulders with world leaders? Want to hear cutting-edge debates on international agriculture from world-renowned experts? Want to attend the World Food Prize in October? Apply now! The College of Agricultural Sciences is providing an opportunity for two undergraduate students and two graduate students to receive funding towards the costs of attending the World Food Prize, October 16-18, 2013.
Penn State UNESCO Chair Program Launch Videos and Transcript
August 12, 2013
On July 15th and 16th, the UNESCO Chair in Rural Community, Leadership, and Youth Development was inaugurated at Penn State with Dr. Mark Brennan, Professor in the College of Agricultural Sciences, as the holder of the Chair. There are 706 UNESCO Chairs world-wide. Eighteen are at U.S. universities, but until now, none was in a college of agriculture.
Drought response identified in potential biofuel plant
July 19, 2013
Drought resistance is the key to large-scale production of Jatropha, a potential biofuel plant -- and an international group of scientists has identified the first step toward engineering a hardier variety. Jatropha has seeds with high oil content. But the oil's potential as a biofuel is limited because, for large-scale production, this shrub-like plant needs the same amount of care and resources as crop plants.
Avocado farmers face unique foe in fungal-farming beetle
July 19, 2013
Beetles with unusual "green thumbs" for growing fungi are threatening avocado crops and could transform into a more destructive pest, according to an international team of researchers. Ambrosia beetles are insects that bore into trees and cultivate fungi to use as a food source for their young. The fungi -- species of Fusarium -- carried by types of the Ambrosia beetle can damage or even kill trees, making the beetle and its fungi a threat to avocado production in the U.S. and Israel, according to Matthew Kasson, who recently received his doctorate in forest pathology from Penn State.
Mark Brennan, UNESCO Chair, outlines vision
July 19, 2013
Mark Brennan, UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) Chair and Penn State professor, delivering the keynote lecture, “Achieving Education for All, Realizing Engaged Communities, and Creating Global Citizens for Change through the UNESCO Chairs Program.” His lecture, which was a call to action for groundbreaking research, teaching and applied programs for the betterment of young people and communities worldwide, capped a two-day symposium, "Shaping the Future of International Development," held July 15-16 on Penn State's University Park campus.
Call for Applications for 2014 AWARD Fellowships
July 19, 2013
The Call for Applications for the 2014 AWARD Fellowships is now open. Application forms can be found on the AWARD website. The deadline is August 9, 2013. The competition is stiff: last year 1,094 top women scientists from 11 eligible African countries applied for 70 available fellowships.
Doctoral degree candidate wins award to present research in Brazil
June 17, 2013
A doctoral degree candidate in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has received a scholarship to present her sensory science research at a conference in Brazil. Nadia Byrnes, of Doylestown, Pa., who is pursuing a doctorate in food science, was named winner of the Rick Bell Memorial Travel Award by colleagues of Bell and the co-chairs of the Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium. The honor includes a $3,000 award for her to travel to Rio de Janeiro in August to present her research at the organization's biennial gathering.
Ag Sciences researchers part of award-winning Africa research team
May 29, 2013
Two scientists in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are part of a research team that recently was named the winner of the 2013 Africa Collaboration Challenge Prize. Sjoerd Duiker, associate professor of soil management and applied soil physics, and Ephraim Govere, research support associate and manager of the college's Soil Research and Cluster Laboratory, are part of a joint Penn State-Global Knowledge Initiative team that was awarded a $20,000 prize.
Student Stories: Food Science major conducts research in France
May 29, 2013
How do you get a child to eat his or her vegetables? This is just one of the problems that Erica Pilgram tackled during a summer stay in France. After graduating from high school, Pilgrim studied culinary arts. She was well aware of the excellent reputation of Penn State's Food Science program, growing up in nearby Philipsburg, Pa. So she decided to enroll as a Food Science/Nutrition Science double major.
Jose De La Torre Endowment Opportunity for Graduate Students from Latin America
May 7, 2013
Nominations are sought for 2013-2014 academic year and will be accepted until 5 PM EST on June 1, 2013.
Penn State to host international conference on pollinator health
May 7, 2013
With populations of wild and domesticated pollinators, such as honeybees, in decline, some of the world's foremost scientists in the field will converge on Penn State this summer to discuss the latest research aimed at understanding and overcoming challenges to pollinator health.
Student Stories: Forest science major studies Aussie ecosystem
April 15, 2013
Darcy McKinley Lester does not like baked beans and spaghetti on toast for breakfast, but she said that dish is hard to avoid when you study abroad in Australia. The Mechanicsburg, Pa., native studied at the Australian National University in Canberra last spring. Now a senior studying forest science, Lester wanted to travel to Australia because she considers the ecosystem Down Under to be fascinating. "The Australian ecosystem is different from anywhere else in the world," she said.
Hoover honored with Kopp Award for undergraduate students
April 15, 2013
Allison Hoover, a junior majoring in agricultural and extension education in the College of Agricultural Sciences, has been awarded the 2012 W. LaMarr Kopp International Achievement Award for undergraduate students.
Jones, Laliberté honored with Kopp International Achievement Award
April 15, 2013
Kristal Jones, a doctoral candidate in agricultural economics, sociology and education in the College of Agricultural Sciences, and Nicole Laliberté, a doctoral candidate in geography and women’s studies, have been honored as co-recipients of the 2013 W. LaMarr Kopp International Achievement Award for graduate students.
First degrees conferred from new International Ag graduate program
March 19, 2013
A new dual-title graduate degree program in International Agriculture and Development offered by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has graduated its first two students. The students' diplomas recognize both their primary degree and the International Agriculture and Development dual-title. Students can earn a master's or a doctoral degree through the dual-title program, also known as INTAD.
Student Stories: Environmental major has Mozambique memory
March 19, 2013
Laura Davis had dreamed of traveling to Africa for years. So in May 2012, she jumped at the chance to embark on a journey to South Africa and Mozambique offered through a Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences natural resources embedded course.
Students recognized for Critical Language Scholarship experiences
March 19, 2013
Two students in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences will be recognized by the college this spring for their experiences in the Critical Language Scholarship Program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. Abraham DeHart, an undergraduate from Glenside majoring in agricultural systems management, learned Urdu; Leslie Pillen, a master's degree candidate in rural sociology from Lincoln, Neb., learned Hindi. Thanks to the federal funding, both studied in India last summer.
2013 Spirit of Internationalization Award winners announced
March 19, 2013
Penn State’s University Office of Global Programs (UOGP) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2013 Spirit of Internationalization Awards. These annual awards honor women from Penn State and the local community who embody the "Spirit of Internationalization" through academic achievements, artistic excellence, volunteerism in international organizations or dedication to advancing the status of women.
Student Stories: Food Science major returns to France
February 19, 2013
Penn State senior Meghan Kane visited France not once, but twice through programs offered by the College of Agricultural Sciences. A Food Science major with a minor in French, the Maple Glen, Pa., native enrolled in an embedded course last year that focused on U.S. and French agricultural systems. This year she was asked to participate as a teaching assistant for the course.
Computer modeling breaks new ground in study of root architecture
February 19, 2013
he UN estimates that one in every seven people around the world are hungry. Fortunately, Jonathan Lynch uses information technology (IT) to get to the root of this problem. Lynch is a professor of plant nutrition in the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences. His research focuses on plant root architecture, and how the study of plant roots can increase crop yields and improve global food security. Lynch conducts research on five continents, where he uses computer simulations to study root characteristics.
Professor at Penn State named UNESCO chair by United Nations
January 23, 2013
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, has established a UNESCO Chair in Rural Community, Leadership, and Youth Development in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. Co-hosted by the college's Center for Economic and Community Development and its Office of International Programs, the chair will be held by Mark Brennan, associate professor of rural community and leadership development.