Purdue Agriculture InFocus
March 2019
Purdue Ag People
Awards/Recognitions
Purdue Ag in the News
Dates and Deadlines
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From the Dean

Karen Plaut
It takes a village. While our faculty, staff and students undergird what we do, there is another group that makes a huge impact on Purdue Agriculture: our citizen advocates and other volunteers whose loyalty and support help our college remain one of the top colleges in the nation and world.

Every year in March, two citizen groups travel to Washington, DC to meet with Indiana’s Congressional delegation and advocate for the capacity and competitive funds we receive in the federal budget. Our CARET (Council on Agriculture, Research, Extension, and Teaching) members are part of a national group of volunteers from land grant universities across the country. The CARET representatives talk to legislators about the impact of research and extension funding in every state in the country. They also help members of Congress and their legislative aides understand the importance of food and agriculture as well as natural resources to the state and the country. Capacity funds help pay for the faculty and staff who enable us to react when state emergencies happen and engage in research and Extension that is important for Indiana. Capacity funds help us compete for competitive funds, which are used to address specific issues of national importance. Capacity funds must be matched one-to-one with state dollars.

In addition to the CARET group, PCARET (Purdue Council for Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching) is a larger citizen advocacy group whose members come from all around Indiana and take time away from their jobs and families to tell our lawmakers their stories of how our research and Extension impact their lives and the lives of those in their communities. PCARET members come from all different walks of life. They are engineers, pharmacists, hairdressers, bankers, farm bureau employees, investigative reporters, and more. Some even came from that school a couple of hours down the road—we’re always happy to come across those who come from IU but are dedicated supporters of Purdue!

The PCARET group—more than 575  members—meets both formally and informally with Indiana state legislators to tell about their personal experiences or the impact Purdue has on their family and neighbors. This advocacy is critical for the matching state dollars and helps us secure support for our county activities.  A subset of PCARET is on the State Committee and they travel to Washington, DC each year to learn about federal advocacy and visit with our Congressional delegation. PCARET is the envy of many other states, since we are currently the only land grant university with this large citizen advocate group. This is the PCARET delegation that visited Washington, DC this year: 

PCARET group








There are many other groups who give their time and talent to represent Purdue all around the state. Master Gardeners, 4-H volunteers, Extension board volunteers, Ag Alumni Association members, Pioneer Village volunteers—all represent and help us in so many ways. We’re also grateful to our Dean’s Advisory Council members who lend their perspective and expertise to help us set the direction for our college, as well as the friends of our college from many companies who come into the classroom and interact with our students, often helping them build connections that will benefit them for years to come.  

All of these individuals act as catalysts to what Purdue Agriculture can achieve, and their impact is astounding. In 2018, 2,762 Master Gardener volunteers gave  173,597 hours to our college, valued at over $4M. To all of our volunteers who have been so gracious as to give part of that precious commodity known as TIME, I say thank you.  I am humbled by your efforts on behalf of the College. You truly embody the meaning of a global land grant institution – What you do makes an impact and makes Purdue Agriculture a special place to be.

All the best,
Karen signature
Purdue Ag People
Jonathan Knott Graduate Research Spotlight: Jonathan Knott

The Graduate Research Spotlight highlights graduate students and their work. The March spotlight is on Jonathan Knott, Forestry and Natural Resources.
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Sonny Perdue Secretary of Agriculture to visit Purdue

US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue will visit Purdue University on Tuesday, April 2. After a breakfast with Indiana agriculture leaders, he will participate in a conversation with Purdue President Mitch Daniels at 9:00 a.m. in Fowler Hall, Stewart Center. The conversation is free and open to the public.
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Hammer Down Hunger Help Hammer Down Hunger, April 2

The Purdue Ag Week Task Force plans to double their meal-packing goal for Ag Week this year. In honor of Purdue’s 150th anniversary celebration, they plan to pack 150,000 meals to feed hungry people locally and abroad. Please join us on April 2 for this fun and important event to help the Purdue Agriculture family to Hammer Down Hunger.  To volunteer, click the link below. 
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Jason Henderson Jason Henderson named Senior Associate Dean

Jason Henderson has been named the college's Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Director of Extension, effective March 1. Jason’s responsibilities in Extension will not change. His new responsibilities include faculty development, leadership training, and entrepreneurial engagement.

Jerry Shively Jerry Shively joins College Leadership Team

Gerald Shively, Agricultural Economics, has been named associate dean and director of International Programs in Agriculture, effective March 25.
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John Lumkes John Lumkes named Assistant Dean

John Lumkes, Agricultural & Biological Engineering, has been named Assistant Dean in the Office of Academic Programs. John is responsible for a variety of duties in undergraduate and graduate education; evaluation of teaching effectiveness; mentoring; and promoting recognition of teaching excellence. John also retains his faculty appointment in ABE.

Beth Hall Director appointed to lead Indiana State Climate Office

Beth Hall, who most recently served as the Midwestern Regional Climate Center's director, has been named director of the Indiana StateClimate Office at Purdue University. The State Climate Office is housed in the Department of Agronomy.
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Justice for All graphic Don’t forget to track Civil Rights and Diversity Training 

All Purdue Agriculture faculty and staff members are required to receive training in civil rights (the regulations), diversity awareness or sexual harassment each year. Rather than mandate a specific training, we ask that you attend any training that fits your needs and interests and enhances your knowledge and understanding of diversity, civil rights or sexual harassment. Please use our Qualtrics survey tool to report training activities.
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Awards and Recognitions
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Purdue Ag in the News
Beth Ford Agricultural Economics event features Land O’Lakes Inc. leader

Beth Ford, president and CEO of Land O’Lakes Inc., will take part April 12 in an interview-style Q&A session, “A Conversation with Beth Ford,” at the prestigious Department of Agricultural Economics 45th Annual James C. Snyder Memorial Lecture.
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Wind energy Energy demand, sources will change with Indiana’s climate

According to the Indiana Climate Change Impacts Assessment report, “Climate Change and Indiana’s Energy Sector,” released on February 19, Hoosiers will heat homes and businesses less but rely more on air conditioning as Indiana’s climate warms. They’ll also get more of their energy from natural gas and renewable sources as those become more cost-effective throughout the rest of the century.
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Bed bugs Study identifies essential oil compounds most toxic to bed bugs

Plant-based essential oils may be good “green” alternatives to the synthetic pesticides currently used to control bed bug infestations. A study led by Ameya Gondhalekar, Entomology, and his doctoral student, Sudip Gaire, has identified some of the most effective essential oil compounds for bed bug control.
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Sylvie Brouder Ag researchers make case: Big changes require access to big data

A diverse group of scientists led by Sylvie Brouder, Agronomy, created an important commentary paper calling for changes and improvements in sharing the vast amounts of data researchers generate and proposing the infrastructure to make it happen. She presented the paper to lawmakers in a series of events on Capitol Hill.
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Traminette grapes New Traminette campaign showcases Indiana’s thriving wine industry

In 2012, the Purdue Wine Grape Team asked Indiana residents and tourists to “Try On Traminette,” the state’s first signature wine. On April 1, the team will launch a new marketing campaign for Traminette encouraging consumers to make this versatile white wine their go-to choice for everyday and special occasions.
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Boiler Tracks Ice Cream Boiler Tracks ice cream debuts for Purdue’s 150th anniversary

Purdue Dining & Catering debuted a new ice cream flavor in honor of Purdue University’s Sesquicentennial Celebration on March 1. Boiler Tracks was developed as part of a partnership between Dining & Catering and students in a capstone class in the Department of Food Science
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February Ag Barometer Farmer sentiment weakens amid marketing risk concerns and uncertainty around tariffs

Uncertainty looms behind a weakened Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer reading in February, with producers less optimistic about current conditions and the commodity price outlook. 
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Jian Jin With digital agriculture, some improvements are automatic

Jian Jin, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, knows that to make progress, one must continuously move forward.  The mindset is reflected in his life, and in the plants in his automated greenhouse.
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AgrAbility Farmer AgrAbility helps veterans launch and maintain careers in agriculture

AgrAbility is a USDA sponsored program that supports farmers with a range of disabilities. The National AgrAbility Project (NAP) and the Indiana AgrAbility Project (Breaking New Ground) are based at Purdue University. Clients’ disabilities range from arthritis to spinal cord damage to traumatic brain injury. The project offers services such as worksite assessments, assistance referrals and case management.
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Dates and Deadlines
April 1-5: Ag Week

April 2: Hammer Down Hunger

April 10-11: Ending Global Hunger Colloquium

April 12: Purdue Agriculture Dean's Advisory Council spring meeting

May 10: Graduate Student Commencement and reception (faculty and staff register here

May 11: Undergraduate Student Commencement and reception (faculty and staff register here)


For more dates and deadlines, check the Purdue Agriculture calendar.
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University News
Purdue ditches plastic for paper straws

Purdue Dining & Catering is making the switch from plastic to paper straws in Purdue’s residential and retail outlets. The transition from plastic to paper straws was complete as of March 18. Dining & Catering officials estimate 650,000 plastic straws were used in campus dining and retail locations last year.
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Proposals requested for Data Science Education Ecosystem

The offices of the Provost and the Executive Vice President for Research and Partnerships announce the spring 2019 Integrative Data Science Education Ecosystem request for proposals. The Data Science Education Ecosystem is a part of the University-wide Integrative Data Science Initiative.
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Search launched for Purdue executive VP for Research

President Mitch Daniels announced on March 20 the launch of a national search for the university’s next executive vice president for research and partnerships and senior research officer. The search will be led by Jay Akridge, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity.
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Student startups win at Burton D. Morgan Business Model Competition

Eight Purdue University student startups earned a total of $83,500 in cash prizes and another $30,000 in in-kind donations during the 32nd annual Burton D. Morgan Business Model Competition.
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Boiler Up Against Hate and Bias logo 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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