Purdue Agriculture InFocus
September 2018
Purdue Ag People
Awards/Recognitions
Purdue Ag in the News
Dates and Deadlines
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From the Dean

Karen Plaut
Giant Leaps Begin!

As I mentioned last month, the celebration of Purdue’s 150th anniversary starts at Homecoming on September 22. The theme for this year-long celebration is “Giant Leaps” in honor of Purdue alumnus Neil Armstrong’s famous quote, “One small step for man, One giant leap for mankind” when he took his first step on the moon nearly 50 years ago. Now, we strive to make giant leaps to solve the world’s greatest challenges.

The Giant Leaps themes include Space Exploration, Artificial Intelligence, Health and Longevity, and Sustainable Economy and Planet. Agriculture faculty, students and staff have been working in all four of these areas for a long time, and will continue to make giant leaps in many of them. I plan to use the next 12 months here in my InFocus messages to explore areas where we are making leaps in teaching, research and Extension that fit with these themes. I think you will see that we have a diverse college committed to excellence and innovation across many different areas, which allows us to use different tools and technologies to make a global impact.

To be on the cutting edge of innovation means that we must continue to bring disciplines together across colleges to leverage strengths. This month, I will focus on the Giant Leap: Health and Longevity category. While our college is doing great cancer research that I will talk about in the future, this month I am focusing on Extension work in Health and Longevity—a very timely topic.

Farmers and rural communities are facing many pressures, from the difficult farm economy to the epidemic of opioid abuse. Extension educators and programs work to intervene early, when prevention can save money and, more importantly, save families. Educators in Health and Human Sciences and Agriculture collaborate on many of these programs. One example is the Strengthening Families Program that works to help reduce the levels of substance abuse among young people, increase their ability to resist peer pressure, and prevent conduct problems in school. The program helps parents build a positive relationship with their children—setting appropriate limits and following through on consequences while showing love and support. This vital program, which started in Ohio, is ranked #1 by the World Health Organization and every $1 spent returns $9.60 to the community.

In addition to our partnership with HHS on the opioid crisis, Purdue Extension is also helping Hoosiers deal with mental health issues. According to the CDC, farming has one of the highest suicide rates among all US occupations. Purdue Extension developed and delivers the Mental Health First Aid Program that is training people to be aware of the symptoms of mental health issues and educating them on how to deal with emergencies. These are two programs among many that illustrate how Purdue Extension is taking Giant Leaps in health and longevity through service to our communities.

All the best,
Karen signature
Purdue Ag People
Rishi Drolia Graduate Research Spotlight: Rishi Drolia

The Graduate Research Spotlight highlights graduate students and their work. The September spotlight is on Rishi Drolia, Food Science.
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US News graphic ABE Undergrad Program still Number One

The undergraduate program in Agricultural and Biological Engineering has been ranked the top such specialty program in the country by U.S. News & World Report for the eighth consecutive year.
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Justice For All graphic Don’t forget to track Civil Rights and Diversity Training

The College of Agriculture is committed to policies and practices that assure that race, ethnicity and gender are not barriers to success. 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.
Report Training
A few days left to submit Agriculture Alumni award nominations

Nominations are being accepted for the College of Agriculture's Distinguished Agriculture Alumni Award recognizing mid-career alumni of the College of Agriculture who have a record of outstanding accomplishments, have made significant contributions to their profession or society in general and exhibit high potential for professional growth. Nomination deadline is September 24.  Nominations are also open for the Purdue Ag Alumni Association’s Certificate of Distinction, which recognizes significant contributions to agriculture, forestry or natural resources through professional accomplishments, activity in professional organizations, community service work, and other activities.
More Information on Awards
Associate Dean and Director of Ag Research and Graduate Education Search Underway  

Jason Henderson, Associate Dean and Director of Purdue Extension, is chairing the search advisory committee for the next Associate Dean and Director of Agricultural Research and Graduate Education. These individuals are serving on the committee:

Layi Adeola, Professor of Animal Sciences
Shalamar Armstrong, Assistant Professor of Agronomy
Stephen Cameron, Professor and Head of Entomology
Melba Crawford, Associate Dean of Engineering for Research, Professor of Agronomy, Civil and Electrical and Computer Engineering, Chair of Excellence in Earth Observation
Natalia Dudareva, Distinguished Professor of Biochemistry and Horticulture and Landscape Architecture
Alan Duttlinger, Graduate Research Assistant in Animal Sciences
Songlin Fei, Associate Professor of Forestry and Natural Resources
Margaret Gitau, Associate Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering
Steve Hawkins, Director of Purdue Agricultural Centers
Stephen Lindemann, Assistant Professor of Food Science
Jake Ricker-Gilbert, Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics
Jyothi Thimmapuram, Bioinformatics Core Director
Ariana Torres, Assistant Professor of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture  

The position description is posted at the link below. Please distribute the position description to interested parties and send the names of people you would like the search committee to encourage to apply to Becky Rice (rdr@purdue.edu).
Position Description and more information
Boiler Black Beer
Purdue fans and beer enthusiasts will celebrate this weekend as the university, in collaboration with People’s Brewing Co., rolls out Boiler Black beer, the second Purdue-branded beer born out of a partnership between the Food Science department and Lafayette-based People's Brewing Company. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Boiler Black will support the department’s new fermentation sciences program. 
Read more and enjoy the photo gallery
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Awards and Recognitions
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Purdue Ag in the News
ScaleUp graphic Purdue driving conversation about how agriculture technologies can be scaled up to save lives around the world 

Expanding technologies that can improve and save millions of lives will be the focus of Purdue University’s Scale Up Conference on Sept. 25-27, the first of its kind in North America. The conference will showcase efforts from around the world that ensure that discoveries and innovations gained from research can quickly benefit the maximum number of people living in developing countries.
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Center for Food and Agricultural Business National conference to focus on trust in business relationships

Professionals from across the agri-food industry will come together to gain industry and business insights and to explore research related to the changing marketplace at the 2018 National Conference for Food and Agribusinesses, hosted by the Center for Food andAgricultural Business, Nov. 6-7.
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Rural Broadband Report: Broadband access would benefit rural areas, state

An analysis done by agricultural economics experts Wally Tyner and Larry DeBoer, with doctoral student Alison Grant, says Indiana could reap nearly $12 billion in present value of net economic benefits over a 20-year period if an investment were made to extend broadband internet into the state's rural areas.
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Fat Cells Bad fat to good fat: Purdue-based startup developing technology to help treat obesity, diabetes

Purdue University-based Adipo Therapeutics LLC received a Small Business Innovative Research grant to support technology aimed at converting bad fat to good fat. The company was founded by Meng Deng, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, building on his collaboration with Shihuan Kuang, Animal Sciences.
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Produce Purdue Extension offers produce safety trainings

Purdue Extension is offering produce food safety training sessions at locations throughout Indiana throughout the fall to help farms and growers learn the basics of food safety and assist in establishing safety programs for their operations.
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Purdue Wine Grape Team Purdue expertise fuels growth for Indiana wineries

The Indianapolis Business Journal says credit for the rise of Indiana’s wine industry belongs to the Purdue Wine Grape Team. Over the last two decades, this four-person cadre of experts has been instrumental both in husbanding the local winemaking industry and in raising its profile nationwide.
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aquatics-fish photo Climate change creates uncertainty for Indiana’s aquatic animals, plants

Warming temperatures and changes to Indiana’s precipitation patterns will challenge some of the plants and animals that depend on the state’s water for their survival, according to a report from the Indiana Climate Change Impacts Assessment.
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SARE logo Workshops help explore sustainable ag funding opportunities

Purdue Extension is hosting a series of free workshops to help farmers, educators and researchers with projects related to sustainable agriculture get the funding to turn their ideas into reality. Funds are available through the USDA’s North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE) grant program.
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Ag Barometer August Farmer sentiment rises, but opinions split over potential impact of aid package

Agricultural producer sentiment increased modestly in August after dipping sharply in July, according to the latest Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer reading. The barometer, which is based on a monthly survey of 400 agricultural producers from across the country, had an August reading higher than July but still well below readings from May and June.
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Dates and Deadlines
September 22: Homecoming Tailgate, Memorial Mall, 9-11 a.m.

September 25-27: Scale Up Conference

September 26-27: Forbes AgTech Summit – Indianapolis

October 2: Fall Career Fair, 9:30 a.m.-3:30 pm, Córdova Recreational Sports Center

October 8-9: October Break

October 8-9: Grad Student Industry Tour

October 12: Agricultural Research Award seminar, Maria Sepúlveda, 3:00 pm, PFEN 241. Reception follows at 4:00 pm.

October 23: 7th Annual College of Agriculture Entrepreneurship Event

For more dates and deadlines, check the Purdue Agriculture calendar.
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University News
USAID selects Purdue-led center to research poverty challenges around world

Purdue University has been awarded $70 million to lead a consortium that will support the United States Agency for International Development by co-creating research solutions to fight poverty in developing countries.
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Purdue ranks No. 4 best value school in nation in WSJ/Times Higher Ed ranking

Purdue ranks fourth best in the nation for Best Value institutions in the United States, based on a survey released September 5 by The Wall Street Journal and Times Higher Education.
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New team to serve as hub for learning innovation

The Innovative Learning Team will bring together Purdue’s Center for Instructional Excellence, Purdue Online Learning (formerly Digital Education) and ITaP Teaching and Learning Technologies to serve as the University’s central resource for all modalities including online, hybrid, and face-to-face teaching and learning projects.
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Purdue celebrates more students than ever seeking high-quality, affordable education

With the arrival of its biggest entering class ever, Purdue University’s overall enrollment has reached its highest all-time level. Total enrollment of 43,411 at Purdue’s West Lafayette campus set a new record, with a growth of 1,838 students over last year, and includes 32,672 undergraduates.
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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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