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Know a future wildcat?

We’d love to meet them. (785) 532-5736 www.ag.ksu.edu @kstateag

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KSUAGR .C OM 1919 Pl att St re et Man hatt an, KS 66502

“Making Better Men at K-State” fall 2019

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GALEN & LORI FINK CHAD & MEGAN LARSON 15523 Tuttle Creek, Randolph, Kansas 66554 Office Phone/Fax: 785.293.5106 Email: finkbull1@twinvalley.net Galen: 785.532.9936 Lori: 785.532.8171 Megan: 785.410.5559 Commercial Services Representatives: Barrett Broadie: 620.635.6128 Gene Barrett: 785.224.8509 finkbeefgenetics.com & Find us on FaceBook 2

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Expand your career in Food and Agriculture Be a part of feeding the world of the future.

Earn an advanced degree

ONLINE. 1-800-622-2578 global.k-state.edu/ag

CENTER FOR RURAL ENTERPRISE ENGAGEMENT

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• Doubled Haploid technology • Genotyping • Marker Assisted Selection • Specialty breeding • Wide crossing • Proprietary research

Driving innovation in wheat and other crops 1990 Kimball Avenue Manhattan, KS 66506 785-320-4300 www.heartlandinnovations.com 3


CONT

features

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YARDS OF CREATIVITY

18

WORLD OF FLAVORS

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PRIDE AND PRECISION

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A KNEADED PARTNERSHIP

How one student combines her passion of horticulture and sewing

A capstone class cooks up change on campus

College of Agriculture students participate in bands across Kansas State University

K-state researchers combat E. coli and Salmonella in wheat flower

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SWARMING FOR SUBSCRIBERS

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POLISHING HER CRAFT

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WABASHING IN D.C.

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PAINTING WITH A PURPOSE

Why students are buzzing about an entomology professor’s YouTube channel

A silversmithing student’s hobby develops into her business

Washington, D.C., hosts numerous College of Agriculture graduates

How one alumna’s career path unexpectedly turned artistic

ON THE COVER: RENATA GOOSSEN

Read more on page 12. Photo by Taylor Belle Matheny.

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ENTS campus

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AGRICULTURE ACES

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COMPETING AT A HIGHER DEGREE

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SALUTING AND STUDYING

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EDUCATIONAL EMPLOYMENT

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THree College of Agriculture men take volleyball to the next level

classroom

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ASH TREE ADVOCATES

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FARM TO FORK: FOOD PROCESSING

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PLANTHROPOLOGY

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DISTINGUISHED PROFESSOR

Students share their routes from competitive judging teams to master’s degrees

A nontraditional student explains her views and experiences

Why two students value their experiences working at the dairy unit and feed mill

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How students learn about the emerald ash borer and protect threatened campus trees

Students get hands-on experience learning about food processing techniques

A new class focuses on how people have interacted with plants over time

Mary Beth Kirkham named University Distinguished Professor

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Wheat State Agronomy Club

• Meets at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays, monthly in Throckmorton 2002. • Food provided, along with networking opportunities and fun activities.

All you need is an interest in Agronomy, anybody is welcome!

Wheat State Agronomy Club 6 AGRON.pdf 1

ksuwsac

ksuwsac

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EDITORS

IN EVERY ISSUE M O L LY B E R T Z , S A R A H M O Y E R , DA N I E L L E C O M S T O C K , L E A H G I E S S

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our years ago, four women set foot on Kansas State University’s campus. Since then we have explored, grown and now collaborated to create the next edition of this publication. Much like we asked our staff this semester to push themselves in their writing and designs, we too have pushed the publication further in the direction of a classic look and feel. Elements of modern design were the vision of Molly Bertz. Sarah Moyer, along with help from Leah Giess, coached peers to create stronger, more polished fall 2019

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stories. Many share about people, the faces of the College of Agriculture. The 72-page publication could not have happened without the support of our advertising sponsors, organized by Danielle Comstock. Thank you also to the group of students who worked with us. This publication was a team effort, which included our fearless adviser, Lisa Moser, who guided us through production and was a trusting friend. Again, thank you. To the reader, please enjoy this edition of the Kansas State Agriculturalist.

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A LETTER FROM THE EDITORS

62

NEWS

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ADVERTISING INDEX

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AGRICULTURIST STAFF DID YOU MISS

Volume 65, Number 2, of the Kansas State Agriculturist was produced by the Spring 2019 agricultural student magazine class and printed by Jostens. This 72-page magazine, plus cover, was created on Macintosh computers using Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator for layout and design. Images not credited were obtained by Pexels Stock Images. All pages were designed by staff. Advertisements were designed by Agriculturist staff members or came from original artwork. Technical advice and production assistance provided by Pat Hackenberg, IGP Institute. Inquiries about this issue should be addressed to Lisa Moser, Kansas State University, Department of Communications and Agricultural Education, 301 Umberger Hall, Manhattan, Kansas 66506.

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AFA provides leader and career development experiences for highly motivated individuals passionate about agriculture and food. Students are invited to apply for AFA Leaders Conference, AFA Leader Institutes and AFA Leader and Academic Scholarships.

www.agfuture.org

BEEF MEET

collegiate cattlewomen at Kansas state university Join the Collegiate Cattlewomen for a dinner and auction to show our appreciation for producers. Want to attend? Contact us to RSVP.

kstateccw@gmail.com 139 Call Hall 1530 Mid-Campus Drive Manhattan, KS 66506

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Saturday, November 9 7 p.m. in Manhattan, KS Stanley Stout Center

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The Opportunity of Being a Student Final thought s f rom our a ss ociate editor a s she f ini shes her career at Kans a s State Unive rsity e ditorial by S A R A H M O Y E R

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at least a dozen of my family members—parents, aunts, uncles, grandpas, cousins and so on—are graduates of Kansas State University. Before I even began high school, conversations included “when you go to college” not “if you go to college.” Luckily, I also grew up with a number of teachers in my extended family, and they instilled in me the value of education. So when I stepped foot on campus my freshman year four years ago, I was determined to squeeze every ounce of knowledge and experience out of my tuition and scholarship dollars. We, as university students, are faced with mixed signals sometimes—study harder, just relax, work more hours and so on. I have often asked myself how to best prioritize my time, and that is when I turn to my values of education, hard work and loyalty.

harder in that class than I did for any other. The same went for Spanish II the following spring. I do not claim fluency, but I know the process of learning a new language is valuable for me to understand as a native English speaker. Easy A’s are OK if you want to skate by and only check off the boxes, knowing job placement in the College of Agriculture is above 90%. But what kind of employee will you be?

I love exploring concepts and connections and asking big questions in the classroom. When I studied abroad in Ireland as a junior, I could have skipped class to gallivant the country. Instead, I expanded my understanding of agriculture, bonded with classmates and traveled on the weekends.

With previous internships and jobs in the field of agricultural communications and journalism, the most important skill I honed was not writing, but listening. When we learn to listen, really listen and pay attention, we become better versions of ourselves. The only attribute that propelled me further than listening in these roles was hard work. I taught myself to stay focused and wanted to exceed expectations. Much like college, my parents had influenced this in me, but peers can be motivators as well. You have to choose. What kind of person will you be?

To make the most of my time at K-State, I enrolled in classes that I was excited to be in. One August, I signed up last minute in Spanish I, and I worked

With all the ideas I carry away from my time at K-State, I continue to value the love and loyalty I have for my family and friends more than ideas, because

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I see relationships are even more important. To grow as an individual, we need knowledge, but we need a little wisdom and vulnerability too. Who will you surround yourself with? At the end of the 2019 Spring semester, I attended the College of Agriculture New Graduate and Alumni Dinner— the one with the limestone rocks. There, animal sciences and industry professor Dave Nichols gave a last lecture style of speech. He reminded us that we possess the precious resources of new ideas, enthusiasm and time as young people. Then he charged the new graduates, like me, to continue to learn and be hard workers in our jobs and lives beyond K-State. I echo him, but toward the current College of Agriculture students, saying do not waste what you have been given. You need to show up and be present. Then, be bold enough to take ownership in your education and the ways it will shape your future. This is your chance to act on the grand opportunity that is being a student. From the other side of the diploma, good luck as you grow. 9


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CATTLEMAN’S CHOICE

Bull Sale

February 26, 2020 | Oakley, Kansas

Grund Beef Genetics 302 Ash Street fall 2019

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Sharon Springs, KS 67758 Grundbeefgenetics.com

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How one stude nt combines he r pa ssion for hor ticulture and s e w ing s t ory b y E M I LY M E I N H A R D T

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C

reativity is a thread that Renata Goossen, horticulture student, weaves throughout all aspects of her life. This thread makes the stitch that joins two of her passions — horticulture and sewing. “When choosing a path to take in college, I struggled to choose between my two passions because I enjoyed both so much,” Goossen says. Even though she decided to follow her passion for horticulture, during her time at Kansas State University she has found that her diversified background allows her interests to intertwine.

SMALL TOWN ROOTS Goossen’s passion for agriculture began during her childhood in the rural Kansas community of Potwin, where her involvement in Butler County 4-H exposed her to both horticulture and sewing. Her interest in plants grew when her local horticulture extension agent encouraged her to become a member of the horticulture team. She honed her attention to details in plant identification during countless hours of studying plant samples, visiting garden centers and traveling to competitions with her judging team. She says she believes her detail-oriented mindset was an asset in 4-H sewing contests and in the National Make It With Wool competition, which has been an integral part of Goossen’s life as well. In her youth, she spent many months each year behind a sewing machine making unique outfits by using different materials and pattern combinations. “Every year I challenged myself to try something new — whether it was a new skill, new material to work with or new style,” Goossen says. “As I developed over 10 years of Make It With Wool, I was able to further my tailoring abilities in each competition outfit.” Just as with sewing, Goossen continued to challenge herself in the area of horticulture. According to Goossen, the smell of potting soil and flowers allows her to escape into a world of both creativity and precision. 13


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While in high school, Goossen owned a greenhouse business, called Renata’s Garden, where she grew plants and flowers from seed to sell in her community. Each year she carefully planned her varieties and tended to the small plants, producing a thousand colorful blooms to sell. “This is what led me to enjoy community work with greenhouses because I did a lot of that in high school,” Goossen says. “I would help plant things for community members and work in the Potwin community garden.”

U N L I K E LY C O M B I N AT I O N Choosing a plant-based major at K-State made it simple for Goossen to find her way back to a greenhouse, but after 13 years of sewing experience, she was not ready to give up her sewing hobby. A friend connected Goossen to the K-State School of Music, Theatre and Dance’s Costume Shop, where she was hired to create costumes for theatre performances. Through her time 14

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working in the costume shop, she says she has learned to draft patterns and to have a holistic approach to designing.

colleagues’ projects required creating natural dyes from trees on campus, Goossen was their “go-to” person.

She says her work in the Costume Shop is a different type of sewing altogether from her experience focusing on the fine details of tailoring wool garments. She has moved from creating a single outfit to looking at the style and needs of an entire cast; so she focuses her theatre involvement on making the garments look good from far away instead of analyzing the microscopic details.

“We were talking about the natural dyes, and I found it really interesting because I am the plant geek in the shop,” she says.

Goossen originally thought working for the theatre program would be a be fun way to use and expand her sewing skills, but it has grown into something more for her. It is one of her communities. “It’s like having two different lives on campus; I have my horticulture science friends that grew up with agriculture backgrounds, and then I go to work at the costume shop and have my theatre friends, which are completely different and fun to be around,” Goossen says. Her co-workers majoring in apparel design have benefited from her diverse knowledge as well. When two

The task was to find a specific variety of tree along the Tree Walk on campus and use its leaves to naturally dye their material. Goossen was able to use her horticultural skills to help her co-workers identify the specific species of tree for each of their projects. “They asked for my help because I could identify and tell them ‘OK, that’s your Japanese Maple,’” Goossen says. “There is not a lot of crossover in industry practices in horticulture and fashion design, but it made me wonder if there was a way I could have combined them.”

GROWTH MINDSET With K-State being a land-grant university, Goossen says she has found a great community to explore and expand her love for the agricultural industry. K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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“EVERY YEAR I CHALLENGED MYSELF TO TRY S O M E T H I N G N E W — W H E T H E R I T WA S A N E W S K I L L , NEW MATERIAL TO WORK WITH OR NEW STYLE.” —Renata Goossen Horticulture and natural resources student

She enjoys being aware of nature around her as she walks through campus. She also finds enjoyment being involved with her studies. “Renata’s passion for greenhouse crops and especially ornamental flowers is delightful,” says Kimberly Williams, horticulture professor. “Her passion is evident in the classroom and labs through the in-depth questions that she asks and her attention to detail.” Knowing the best way to learn is to immerse herself in a horticultural environment, Goossen participates in the K-State Horticulture Club. There she serves on committees such as Throckmorton Patio Maintenance, the Valentine’s Day Rose Sale and the Spring Bedding Plant Sale. In addition, as a member of the K-State National Collegiate Landscaping and Contracting Team, Goossen spent several hours every week studying plant identification cards to learn the genus, species and common names of over 180 plants in preparation for her individual event, Annual & Perennial Plant Identification. fall 2019

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“Her work ethic is just tremendous,” Williams says. “As a witness of a final project she completed, I do not exaggerate when I say her work is incredible in its originality and creativity.” This final Williams refers to showcased a variety of plants, and Goossen used her creativity and skills to sew together pages of an herbarium, including morphology and facts about each specimen displayed.

A FUTURE WITH PLANTS Most people have a dream job, and this is no different for Goossen. Community and education are two areas she wants to expand upon for her future career. She says she believes it is important to make people aware of their surroundings. Goossen’s hope is to own an agri-tourism business someday, allowing her to have a personal greenhouse to produce and sell plants. She would also like to be involved in the community by teaching classes on horticultural

techniques and encouraging people to become more in-touch with nature. Goossen is on track to be in the floriculture commercial industry, which works to raise potted crops within a greenhouse and market them to the consumer. She believes commercial growing is beneficial, but the idea of interacting with people in a rural community is something that she says fulfills her. Although horticulture occupies most of her attention throughout the school year, she has not left her personal sewing behind. A vintage Singer Featherweight sewing machine can be found in Goossen’s apartment awaiting that perfect project. “I have a creative side, but I also have a particular side.” Goossen says. “It overflows in both areas of my life. I can use my particularity gained from my greenhouse production side in sewing, but also use my creativity gained from costume sewing within horticulture.”

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R P H O T O L E F T : Between the walls of McCain Auditorium are hundreds of costumes hung in racks that students, like Renata Goossen, put hours into altering. P H O T O T O P R I G H T : Now and then, Goosseen applies her sewing skills to horticulture. She once created a herbarium, or collection of preserved plants, by stitching together pages of fabric. P H O T O B O T T O M R I G H T : Renata Goosen, horticulture student, stands with the other contestants at the National Make It With Wool competition.

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enata Goossen has competed in the Kansas Make It With Wool competition eight times. To qualify for the National Make It With Wool competition the participant must win the state competition. National Make It With Wool is sponsored by the American Sheep Association and encourages youth and adults to create original outfits, showcasing the beauty and versatility of wool fabrics. This competition recognizes participants’ creative skills. It allows participants to develop skills by focusing on marketability, fashionability and construction of each garment. At the end of each year’s competition the contestants also build on their skills by using the judges’ opinions to grow and improve techniques. Goossen says this competition is a highlight in her life as she won the national competition twice, both as a junior and senior competitor. “My greatest accomplishment would be winning the Make It With Wool competition because I started so small and grew in my skills to eventually win the national competition two times,” Goossen says. “It was a long process but was well worth the hard work.”

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SHAPING THE FUTURE TOGETHER GRAIN

AGRONOMY

FEED

RISK MANAGEMENT

FUEL

INTERNSHIP AND CAREER OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE!

Visit us at www.mkcoop.com or follow us at fall 2019

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oon strikes and students pour into the K-State Student Union. It quickly fills with students on the move as the lunch rush begins.

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and Christine Rock, recent food science and industry

Students Zachary Callaghan, agricultural education; Lacy Pitts, agricultural economics; 18

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graduate, worked to address this challenge.

P E E L I N G B AC K THE PROBLEM The group says they knew they would need to do research and gather data before tackling any problem in the food system, so they collected information from three main sources.

Students in the global food systems leadership secondary major noticed one thing missing from the food service options available. The Union lacked places where students could eat a healthy and affordable meal. As part of the capstone course, students were divided into groups and asked to identify a problem on campus related to the food system. Student groups worked together on a proposal for improving the food system at Kansas State University and presented it to a committee.

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“We talked to people from the International Student Center, the dietician from Lafene Health Center and talked to people in the Union to hear what they thought we were lacking on campus,” Callaghan says. “From that, we came up with the idea of this restaurant in the Union.”

P H O T O A B O V E : Lacy Pitts, student in agricultural economics, poses in front of the Union Kitchen serving line.

Through their research, they discovered the campus lacked a place for international students and students with religious or allergy related diet restrictions.

International food options had not always been scarce in the Union, because before the 2015 renovations there were more food options. As director of the secondary major global food systems leadership, Mary Kay Siefers played an influential role in how the capstone class is structured. “Not only do we want students to learn about the global food system, but we also want students to exercise leadership to influence change in the system through a community-engaged project,” Siefers says.

MIXING VIEW POINTS The student group went to Corey Williamson, executive director of the Union, to discuss their research findings, and what they thought could be done to improve on the issue. K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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A capstone cla ss cook s up change on campu s sto r y b y TA R R A R O T S T E I N

Callaghan explains how there was an empty spot in what was previously the Just Salads restaurant, and the Union leadership was interested in seeking student input.

“We wanted to provide those comfort foods to those students who maybe haven’t gotten to eat anything like that since they came to Kansas,” Pitts says.

“It was funny how that worked out,” Callaghan says. “We were looking for this project, and then they were also trying to figure out what to put in this space.”

NOURISHING R E L AT I O N S H I P S

When talking with Williamson about the space, Pitts said they wanted the restaurant to be inclusive because the research team noticed how there was nowhere for international students to find cultural food. One of the biggest factors in making the restaurant inclusive was bringing in animal protein processed in accordance with students’ beliefs and providing vegetarian and vegan options for those not wanting to include animal protein in their diet. fall 2019

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Pitts and Callaghan both shared how this was only possible because of their campus relationships. Besides Siefers, Shannon Washburn, assistant dean of academic programs; Jessie Vipham, assistant professor with food safety; and Jon Ulmer, associate professor in agricultural education, advised students working on the project. “Each of the professors, Siefers, Washburn, Vipham and Ulmer, were all instrumental and supportive in helping us develop these projects and inspiring us to do so,” Callaghan says. “The class helped you think bigger,

that it is not just a small class project, we are really trying to implement something here.” Pitts spent a lot of time in the Union because of her role as student body vice-president, so she frequently interacts with Williamson. “Those little interactions created a really good relationship and especially if he was thinking about something with the Union Kitchen,” Pitts says. She says he would just bring ideas to her in those casual conversations. These close relationships the student group had with faculty around campus kept them energized and focused until the completion of the project.

SERVING UP COMFORT

breakfast, lunch and dinner, and opened January 24, 2019. The menu includes options that are vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and halal inclusive, which are available to students at an affordable price. “There is not a lot of branding because they wanted to make sure costs were minimal,” Pitts says. “And they didn’t want it to be a franchise so it could be wholesale cheap for students.” Coming up with the variety of different options such as salads, salad wraps, grain bowls, breakfast items and kitchen classics was also important. “That taste of home matters so much and your point of comfort always comes down to food. That is such an easy way to bring people together,” Pitts says. “Food brings communities together.”

The Union Kitchen restaurant sells healthy and home-cooked options for 19


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C ollege of Ag r ic ulture stude nts par tic ipate in band s across Kan s a s State Unive rsity story by M I K E Y H U G H E S

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sing the right instrument is important for college students. Whether it is a pencil, a calculator or even a trombone, instruments are essential for collegiate success. Passion for music led two College of Agriculture students to participate in Kansas State University bands. Joshua Stucky, fourth-year student in agribusiness, and Brooke Vetter, second-year student in agricultural education, have played since coming to K-State.

SOIL AND SAXOPHONES

joined the marching band his second year and then the volleyball and basketball pep band his third year. “The first semester I did marching band, it was very overwhelming. My grades took a hit that semester trying to manage rehearsal time with band, other organizations and my studies,” Stucky says. “This past season, I was able to manage my time wisely to be successful.” He said knowing when to say “no” has helped him manage his responsibilities. Still, during the fall, marching band practice takes much of his time.

Stucky first enrolled in band and started on the alto saxophone during fifth grade. Like Vetter, his teacher let students test different instruments. Stucky chose the alto saxophone because his cousin had played it while in school. Stucky’s high school did not have a marching band, but he was involved in concert band.

“On a game week, we have two-hour rehearsals on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday,” Stucky says. “Then we have sectionals on Wednesday night for an hour. Then there are the games, usually we arrive six hours early to practice before the game and play through the game, which lasts three to four hours.”

In his first semester at K-State, Stucky did not join a band because he was nervous. Then his second semester, he became a member of the wind symphony. Stucky

“Even if it is 6 a.m. or 12 degrees outside, being surrounded by fans and running through the tunnel, nothing compares to game days from a band standpoint,” Stucky says.

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Despite the time commitment, Stucky believes band is worth it.

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P H O T O L E F T : Joshua Stucky, fourth-year student in agribusiness, plays his saxophone in the K-State marching band. P H O T O R I G H T : Brooke Vetter, second-year student in agricultural education, marches to the beat.

TROMBONES AND T R AC T O R S Ten years ago, Vetter’s family inspired her to join band. Growing up, her parents taught band and agricultural education at her high school. As a fifth-grade student she chose the trombone because she thought it was unique.

On weeks the concert band performs, members practice twice for two hours and then perform for about two hours.

when we step foot on that practice field, we put those differences aside and become one giant family.”

No matter the time commitment, Vetter enjoys participating in band because it allows her to meet other students. For Vetter, band is about connecting with people.

Both said principles learned in band go beyond the field and the concert hall. Vetter sees how band helps her develop teaching skills. “Band connects to my major because I have to know how to work with people,” Vetter says. “I’m one of the few agriculture majors in band, but this gives me an opportunity to learn and teach at the same time. There are music majors who help me out with more difficult music things, and I love sharing my knowledge of agriculture with people who are unaware of certain topics. I am excited for that same thing with being an agriculture teacher.”

“I think being an agriculture major and participating in band is what I was meant to do. I come from a band family. My parents met in band, and my mom still teaches band,” Vetter says. “Agriculture is what I want to focus on for the rest of my life, but I love band.”

“Band is very rewarding. Each band is made up of students from across the university, with different backgrounds and majors,” Vetter says. “We come together to do what we love, and our differences don’t matter in the moment. We share a connection through our love of music.”

At K-State, Vetter participates in marching band and concert band. She enjoys the variety both bands give her.

A B E AU T I F U L HARMONY

“Marching and concert band both emphasize precision and accuracy,” Vetter says. “Marching band focuses on the physical aspect, being in the right place and knowing where to go next. Concert band is about playing correctly and connecting with the audience to make them feel something.”

Vetter and Stucky see a relationship between the agricultural industry and band.

Stucky, now into his final year, sees the impact band has made on his college career.

Stucky says that like band, the agricultural industry is a tight-knit community. Producers have each other’s backs and seek to help one another succeed.

Vetter says the time commitment for marching band and concert band are different, and concert band takes much less time than marching band.

“Band is no different,” Stucky says. “We all come from different backgrounds, we’re all studying different majors and we all have different interests. But,

“I think you learn a lot of life lessons from band,” Stucky says. “One thing it teaches us is leaving things better than you found it. I think that’s a huge life lesson beyond marching band. When I leave K-State, I want it to be better than I found it.”

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K-State res earche rs combat E . coli and S almonella in wheat f lour s t o r y b y K AC I F O R A K E R

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ost people remember being told not to eat cookie dough because of the danger related to consuming raw eggs, but what most may not know is that those same pathogens can be present in unbaked flour products. There have been an increasing number of flour or flour-related recalls based on contamination. The trend has created a need to reevaluate the flour-making process from growing wheat to cooking with flour in the kitchen. Randall Phebus, Food Science Institute professor; Kaliramesh Siliveru, assistant professor of grain science and industry; and Gordon Smith, department head of grain science and industry, formed a cross-collaborative team at Kansas State University to address this issue. “I’m coming from the engineering perspective. Dr. Phebus is coming from the microbiology perspective, and Dr. Smith is providing our organization leadership,” Siliveru says. “We are coming together under this umbrella to find food safety solutions to kill pathogens like fall 2019

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salmonella and E. coli, which can be implemented commercially by the milling and baking industries.”

IN THE MILL Siliveru has been studying the contamination of wheat with E. coli or Salmonella for the past three years. He combines his engineering skills with his knowledge of the milling process to develop computer models that closely emulate the entire milling process of the wheat kernel in the field to passing through the 13-step milling process. “We use red dots to mimic kernels that have the contamination,” Siliveru says. “The kernels displayed on the screen are not true wheat but have all the characteristics of wheat. With these programs you can see if you don’t clean this mill part, you could be mixing your clean wheat with contaminated particles. It is the real process that is happening.” These models are used to evaluate the locations of the process that would be at the highest risk for contamination, how the pathogens survive in a dry environment and where wheat is

initially getting infected. Wheat mills are well established in Kansas as well as in surrounding states, Siliveru says. He hopes to develop a process that will reduce microbial risks in wheat even before it reaches the mill.

IN THE KITCHEN In Call Hall, Phebus is investigating contaminated flour’s impact on the safety of consumer food products. His research group makes commercial recipes using flour that has been intentionally inoculated with Salmonella and E. coli. These raw products are then cooked using commercial parameters to determine their effectiveness in eliminating pathogens and establishing the safety of that particular baking process. These trials, or validation studies, ensure that pathogens are killed using current cooking methods. The lab has run studies on bread, soft cookies, hard cookies, fruit-filled pastries, muffins with nuts, muffins without nuts and peanut butter bars. 23


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P H O T O A B O V E : Randall Phebus, Food Science Institute professor, and Kaliramesh Siliveru, assistant professor of Grain Science and Industry, examine wheat during the flour milling process as part of their collaborative studies.

“There is an important industry connection here, as we are either taking existing industry technology or developing new processes, that the industry can utilize to protect consumers and their valuable brands,” Phebus says. “We are not just using a nonhazardous organism that we think will act like Salmonella. We are actually using Salmonella in our secure facilities to inoculate grain or flour at 100,000 to a million organisms per gram, which is really high levels.” Using genuine pathogens generates data that is extremely relevant to the industry, Phebus says. Since 2011, companies must adhere to the Food Safety Modernization Act that requires them to provide scientific evidence of their safety practices. “The main goal is to make the product safer for consumption,” says Daniel Vega, food science doctoral student working with Phebus. “The new act forces companies in the industry to prove their safety steps are scientifically 24

validated. What we are doing here is providing the scientific validation data, so they can justify to the corresponding authorities that their products are safe.” Consumers who are using raw flour to cook with have nothing to worry about as long as they are heating the flour to a high temperature and cleaning their kitchens properly, Phebus says. Transfer of contaminated flour can occur by simply licking the spoon that was used to mix the dough, dusting food with raw flour after baking or not properly cleaning flour off the counter. “There are a lot of ways for that cooked product to be recontaminated once you pull it back out of the oven,” Phebus says. “Even if you wipe your hands on your apron that has flour on it, then pull the cake out of the oven you have just recontaminated it.”

IN THE TESTS Whether running a computerized simulation measuring food

temperatures in ovens, or recording information from the industry-size Hal Ross Flour Mill, K-State has the capability to research the entire process of turning wheat into flour and ultimately into finished consumer foods. “Graduate, undergraduate, milling science or baking science: these students are getting exposed to this kind of research and training that is happening in very few other places,” Phebus says. “Our students are going out as possibly the first generation for flour safety.” K-State students are not solely learning about contaminants in flour as wheat is also used in thousands of other products. “The safety of grain-based human foods is of utmost importance, but these same ingredients go into pet food products,” Phebus says. “We are scientifically validating the manufacturing processes for these types of consumer goods as well.” K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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TEACHING. RESEARCH. EXTENSION. fall 2019

785-532-6533 | 232 Weber Hall | asi.k-state.edu K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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Kansas State University Agricultural Education

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K-State Agricultural Education To learn more visit, www.communications.k-state.edu.

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“ L I K E A N A R T I S T, Y O U H A V E T H E P O W E R T O S H O W P E O P L E W H AT Y O U WA N T T H E M T O S E E . ” —Jane Ramsbottom Metz fall 2019

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Why students are bu zzing about an e ntomolog y profess or’s You Tube channel story by M I K E Y H U G H E S

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ouTube has something for everyone. Whether it is seeking advice, knowledge or laughs, there is a video on YouTube with that purpose. For those seeking to learn, and maybe laugh along the way, they need to look no further than the channel Insect Fusion. Created by Jeremy Marshall, associate professor of entomology at Kansas State University, Insect Fusion teaches viewers about the world of insects in a creative way. Teaching his first online class in the summer of 2018 drove Marshall to start his channel. He filmed his first lecture in the standard way for online professors — placing a small rectangle-shaped feed of himself talking on top of a filmed PowerPoint. “I had to do something else,” Marshall says. “I thought, ‘This is the most horrible thing I’ve ever seen, I can’t make students watch this.’” As a result, he started to add small video clips of himself teaching important concepts in a funny way to his class. Now with Insect Fusion, Marshall works to make entomology feel approachable and fun for all people.

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CLASSROOM ANTICS For the classroom, he creates 45-second video lectures to explain a topic. The videos are usually edited-down versions of longer videos available on his YouTube channel. “I use the short videos as a review for concepts we have already discussed,” Marshall says. “The videos help students remember important topics, and they do better on exams as a result.” In fact, Marshall performed an analysis of his classes’ exam scores and questions over the past three years and found that students have performed 30% to 40% better on difficult questions since implementing YouTube videos. Most importantly, Marshall uses the channel to connect with his students. “Lots of times as faculty, we’re put on this different level,” Marshall says. “When students approach, they feel like they can’t talk to you because of that. I want to connect, and I want students to know I care. When you’re being silly and you’re doing these fun things, they know it’s OK to come and talk to you about whatever.”

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P H O T O L E F T A N D R I G H T : Associate professor, Jeremy Marshall impersonates bees and butterflies to explain key entomology concepts to students in his videos.

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Marshall is not afraid to dress-up in public, whether he is running around campus in a butterfly costume or visiting a class dressed like a bee.

“Scientists don’t need big words and a lab coat to influence people,” Marshall says. “You can get complex ideas across in everyday terms. When people visit Insect Fusion, I want them to have fun and learn something.”

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When deciding what topics to discuss on Insect Fusion, Marshall thinks about what someone may want to learn. He keeps a running list of common entomology questions and regularly notes what topics he wants his class to better understand.

Outside of the classroom, Marshall hopes Insect Fusion teaches people that science can be fun.

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When it comes to producing a video, Marshall is entirely self-taught. He had no previous experience with filming equipment or video-editing software, but he says he is improving as he goes. Currently, he films, edits and directs videos alone, aside from the occasional help of his family. Marshall spends about 12 hours working on one minute of content for his channel. He currently has 110 subscribers on his channel.

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BUILDING A CHANNEL

“When I filmed the bee dance video, it was around 5:30 p.m. on campus and I thought classes were done for the day,” Marshall says. “Then class got out at 5:20, and there were all sorts of students around, faculty members came out of their buildings and they were watching and taking some selfies. Then a prospective student tour with 50 or 60 students came by, and every single person took their phones out and started filming. At that moment I thought, ‘This is a bit ridiculous, right?’”

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A silversmithing stude nt’s hobby de velops into he r bu siness

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hile most college students try to balance school, work and a social life, Bailey Allen is balancing all of that plus running her own business. “It’s hard because my roommates get off of work at five and they don’t have to think about work until the next day,” Allen says. “I kind of get jealous about that because I might have to work until nine one night to get something done.”

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to really get me started when I was first learning the trade,” Allen says. Allen’s first piece she made was a keychain she saw online. She says she thought to herself, “I can make that.” Everything she has learned to this day has been trial and error. One thing Allen says is she wished she would have taken a class to learn the basics when she was getting started.

Allen, an animal sciences and industry student, combined her entrepreneurial skills and love of silver to develop BA Silver, her silversmith business. She uses raw mediums such as silver, copper, brass, and stones to make western-inspired, custom jewelry, belt buckles, and tack hardware with various hand tools, engraving tools, and welding and soldering equipment.

G R O W I N G B A S I LV E R The biggest advertisement for Allen has been word-of-mouth. She says that coming to K-State has helped her business grow by getting orders from other students in class. In 2018, Allen was commissioned to make the awards for the 2018 K-State Rodeo.

Allen decided to come to Kansas State University because of its well-known College of Agriculture.

She also learned how to weld from her dad and grandpa as they already knew the trade. She credits her grandpa as her biggest inspiration. “He has had a hand in helping me along the way, learning things about metal and welding; and he still helps me get my buckles shaped and welded. He has helped me get some big tools fall 2019

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“I have to work hard to keep up with the orders; but it’s still nice if there is something I want to go do, I can,” Allen says.

“I have definitely learned to manage my time better,” Allen says. “It all falls back on me. It’s not like if I run short on time, I can just have someone else do it for me.”

Growing up on a ranch in Council Grove, Kansas, she was involved with 4-H, FFA, ranch rodeos and helping on the ranch with 4,500 head of cattle.

Allen started BA Silver as a senior in high school after doing an internship at Alexanders ArtWorks in her hometown. There she learned how to use a plasma cutter and some basic fabrication techniques using steel.

Allen says the best part about owning her own business is she gets to be her own boss and set her own schedule.

The busiest time of the year for Allen is around Christmas. She says the biggest negative to owning her own business is the stress of fulfilling orders on time.

LEARNING THE TRADE

“I tossed around the idea of going into something non-agriculture, like engineering, but I didn’t like the idea of not being in agriculture the rest of my life,” Allen says.

she solders them on, and from there buffs and polishes and engraves the buckles. Then she finishes them with a chemical that darkens the color of the steel and prevents it from tarnishing.

“I have reached out to a few silversmiths about tips or how to do things but most of them don’t want to share their secrets,” Allen says. Her first official order was in May 2016, soon after she started her business. It was a belt buckle for a wedding.

Allen has made everything from a knife for the K-State Rodeo men’s all-around award, to a top buyer award for a bull sale and awards for 4-H dog shows. Allen’s versatility and willingness to try new projects has new orders coming in regularly.

THE BUCKLE PROCESS

She plans on making BA Silver her full-time job after graduation in May 2020.

The process starts with Allen cutting out the belt buckle blanks at Alexander ArtWork. After cutting them out she then takes them to her grandpa’s house and uses a tig welder, and she presses to shape the buckles and welds the keepers and bard to the buckle.

“I think it will be easier if I had all day to prioritize and not have to worry about going to class,” Allen says. “I do hope to make the business full time once I get out of college. It would also allow me to be flexible and continue helping on the ranch.”

For the next step, Allen buffs the buckles clean and measures to cut out the overlays. Once the overlays are cut out, 31


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Washing ton, D.C. hosts numerou s C olleg e of Ag r ic ulture g raduates

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Kansas State University is home to many College of Agriculture students from all types of backgrounds and states. Where these students go after they graduate varies greatly. Washington, D.C. is one of the stops that many K-State students, present and past, can say that they have called home at one time or another. Amanda Spoo, agricultural communications and journalism alumna, and Christine Rock, food science, political science and global food systems leadership alumna, both live and work in D.C. How they both ended up in the same town after graduation has to do with the connections they made while attending K-State.

While at K-State, Spoo was involved in numerous clubs and organizations. She also held internships that pointed her on her path to Washington D.C. While working at the International Grains Program at K-State, Spoo discovered her love for helping farmers and ranchers.

job as the director of communications for U.S. Wheat Associates through the K-State agricultural communicators alumni page on Facebook. The position had been held previously by a K-State graduate, and Spoo knew as soon as she saw it, that she had to have the job.

THE ROAD TO D.C.

“I enjoy helping the farmer who has to wear a lot of hats,” Spoo says. “It’s rewarding to see the relationships built with farmers and it reminds me how much farmers depend on us.”

Spoo says she did not start out looking for a position in Washington D.C. Following graduation, she worked for the Kansas Pork Association before deciding that living in the same town she went to college in was not as fun as she had initially thought. She kept her eyes open for a change. Thankful for networking and connections, Spoo found her current fall 2019

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Rock says her job searching experience was a whirlwind similar to Spoo’s. Her original goal was to become a food scientist, which made the Food Science Institute a perfect fit for her. Then through her internship at the Kansas Department of Agriculture,

Rock was able to experience a different kind of meaningful work, and she was introduced to staff who helped her find her dream job. After sharing her interest in working in Washington D.C. and around food policy post-graduation, Rock was connected to numerous K-State alumni already established in the city. This allowed her to be open to numerous job opportunities. Soon enough she had a one-way flight to Washington D.C. with all of the belongings that she could fit into two carry-ons and two 50-pound suitcases. Rock started her job working for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry as a Staff Assistant and Legislative Correspondent in January 2019. 33


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“ I E N J OY H E L P I N G T H E FA R M E R W H O H A S TO W E A R A L OT O F H AT S . I T ’ S R E WA R D I N G TO S E E T H E R E L AT I O N S H I P S B U I LT W I T H FA R M E R S A N D I T R E M I N D S M E H OW M U C H FA R M E R S D E P E N D O N U S . ” —Amanda Spoo Agricultural communications and journalism alumna

Her days are spent maintaining the committee website and file management system, organizing meetings, committee hearings and other events, and addressing agriculture, nutrition and forestry-related constituent mail. “I am convinced that I have my perfect first job,” Rock says.

W H AT T H E F U T U R E HOLDS Spoo says that in agriculture and politics, it is easy to be negative because of what the markets may look like or what might be going on in the world. But she says there is also a really good core of people working in agriculture in Washington D.C. They are there for both the ups and downs of the economy. “People do care what happens to farmers and I enjoy being a part of it,” Spoo says. “It makes me a better person and pay more attention to things around me.” For now, Spoo says while she does want

P H O T O A B O V E : Christine Rock, a 2018 K-State graduate, says she loves the restaurants, farmers’ markets, and variety of grocers in D.C. P H O T O R I G H T : Growing up in northeastern Oregon, Amanda Spoo had never been to Kansas until her senior year of high school. She graduated from K-State in 2014.

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more traditional things in the future such as moving back home to start a family, Washington D.C. is currently the place for her. “I love D.C. so much,” she says. “People joke that D.C. is an addiction. There is something so electric and inspiring about it.” Rock sees herself staying in the area for awhile because there are so many opportunities unique to the city. As long as she has opportunities and continues to learn and grow, Rock says she looks forward to continuing to call Washington D.C. home. Whether you are from a big city or small town, Rock says Washington D.C. has a way of satisfying many of the needs of both. She says there is a surprisingly tight-knit, well-connected, and relatively small group of people that include many K-State alumni, who all work with each other. To her, this makes the city feel less intimidating and encourages a level of comradery not necessarily found in other industries and careers. Washington D.C. can entertain all people too. While Rock enjoys a good meal and visiting farmers markets, she also says the monuments, museums and music scenes are spectacular. Agreeing with Rock, Spoo encourages anyone thinking about visiting or working in Washington D.C. to come. “I have become a better person because I have lived in D.C.,” says Spoo. “Living here has challenged my way of thinking, changed my thought process and reconfirmed my way of thinking. It has made me a better person and given me the opportunity to meet people I otherwise wouldn’t have met.” K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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KA AN NS SA A K W W H H EE AA Rediscover Wheat Rediscover Wheat

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AgrAbility Kansas AgrAbility enables a high quality lifestyle for Kansas farmers, ranchers and other agricultural workers who have become injured or have an activity limiting condition to remain actively engaged in agriculture for as long as they choose. We can lend a hand, contact us if you or someone you know would like to learn more.

Connect with us! Kansas AgrAbility Project @KSAgrAbility @KSAgrAbility

Call 1-800-KAN-DO-IT, email: agrability@ksu.edu or visit: agrability.ksu.edu fall 2019

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ou never know where life is going to take you,” says Kansas State University agricultural communications and journalism alumna Jane Ramsbottom Metz. “If someone told me when I was in college that I would be an artist, I never would have believed them.” Metz is a second-generation College of Agriculture graduate from Belleville, Kansas, who now lives in Fort Worth, Texas. Watching her father work in livestock publishing, Metz says she knew agricultural journalism and K-State was the obvious choice for her. She graduated in 1984. 36

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How one alumna’s caree r path une x pec tedly tur ned ar ti stic sto r y b y A L L I S O N WA K E F I E L D

“I love the kind of people in agriculture and the lifestyle,” Metz says. “It was something I enjoyed and felt like I could be good at.” After graduation, Metz worked as the associate editor for the Kansas Stockman and as editor of the American Red Angus magazine in Texas. She says she loved the opportunity to work for Red Angus producers and help promote the breed. In addition to her career in agricultural journalism, Metz has had a lifelong interest in working with dogs.

A DA R E In 1999, Metz was working as a professional dog handler, breeding German shorthaired pointers and owning a full-service kennel in Fort Worth, Texas. A gentleman came to the kennel weekly trying to convince her to attend an art class. “I just didn’t have time with all of my business and travel,” Metz says. “I finally said ‘If you quit asking me, I’ll go.’ So, I kind of started out on a dare.” A month after attending the art class, Metz’s first painting won the People’s K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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Choice Award and was sold to a collector at the Safari Club International Convention auction in 1999. Within six months Metz had paintings on permanent collection in the Hall of Fame at the National Bird Dog Museum in Tennessee, on the cover of the Retriever Journal, and in the Holland & Holland Gallery in New York City.

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has since made a ring, pendant and bracelet for K-State and is starting to paint for the university this year.

appear on the covers of many magazines and presented in multiple galleries across the United States.

“The Aggie ring is popular. I wanted to try and bring that to K-State, even on a small scale,” Metz says. “When people see a ring like that they recognize it and feel the emotion of belonging to something and being proud.”

A lifetime highlight of hers was the opportunity to be in the paddock of the Kentucky Derby with Peter Williams, the official painter of the Kentucky Derby, to paint the racehorse Lawyer Ron. Another high point was painting former President George W. Bush’s dog Barney.

HER PURPOSE

Metz says her goals are to be the top sporting dog artist, to continue giving back to different organizations that grew both her and her two sons, and to use her talents to make the world a better place.

Metz has since painted thoroughbred and cutting horses, but her main experience is with hunting dogs. As she branches out as an artist, Metz says she is gravitating back to the areas she is passionate about; the livestock industry, ranching and the ambiance of the Flint Hills.

ADVICE

“I love to paint what I know,” she says. “I love to study what I’m going to paint so I understand it. It’s really important to me to be authentic and intentional about what I’m painting.”

Metz says students should understand that life is about relationships. The relationships she has built have allowed her to work with exclusive plantations and lodges, and provided her numerous other opportunities.

Metz writes a scripture on all of her canvases before she paints over them and gives each painting a single word description such as “motivated” or “dedicated” as another way of continuing to spread a message with her work.

“You get to go to new places and meet new people that you might not normally get the chance to and even tell their story through your writing,” Metz says. “Like an artist, you have the power to show people what you want them to see.”

“I don’t want it to just be crafty, I want to make it special,” Metz says. “It is about quality over quantity for me. If I’m doing a project, I’m doing it for a reason.” Creating jewelry became an extension of her art after making a pin for the Company K-2 Corps of Cadets group her son was involved in at Texas A&M. Making the pin soon evolved to her designing a pendant and an “Aggie Mom” ring for the university, along with starting to paint the Texas A&M mascot, Reveille, five years ago. She fall 2019

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AC C O M P L I S H M E N T S Metz says although she is not working in the field of journalism, she uses the skills she learned at K-State. She does her own marketing on social media, created her own website, developed her communication skills and has been successful with her art. “It has helped me articulate what I want and navigate the direction I’m going,” Metz says. “Also, how I’ll promote my work and the image I want it to have with it.” Metz says her career has been filled with many opportunities, so it is hard to pick a favorite. She feels fortunate to have had her paintings

To be thoroughly prepared for a career, Metz suggests doing internships to gain experience. She also advises students to work and take advantage of as many real-world experiences as possible before graduating. This helps them become a more well-rounded and marketable candidate in their chosen field. “Find a niche that you are passionate about and fit into,” Metz says. “It may not be the highest paying job, but I think the experiences and places you get to see are way more rewarding.” 37


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ON CAMPUS Investing in the future leaders of the corn industry

2019 NEXT GENERATION SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS

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Career Connections Connect college students to potential career paths in the corn industry, request a speaker or panel

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REUNITE 10.4.19

5th Annual Family & Friends Reunion Join us in recognizing the Kansas Livestock Association with the 2019 Don L. Good Impact Award and acknowledge the organization for its contributions to the agricultural industry.

Stanley Stout Center | Manhattan, Kansas | www.asi.k-state.edu/familyandfriends Bring the entire family and enjoy an evening of great food, good music, kids activities and catching up with friends and ASI faculty and staff. Plus, there’s no fundraising!

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Members enjoy our annual ski trip during winter break.

FarmHouse Fraternity is a “Builder of Men.” Since 1921, we have offered K-State men the opportunity to develop intellectually, spiritually, socially and physically.

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FarmHouse is dedicated to providing a healthy community for undergraduate students. Pictured are all members gathered to share in fellowship during our annual Christmas celebration and feast. Five members and our housemother attended K-State’s Fraternal Excellence awards where multiple members were recognized for their leadership in the Greek Community. FarmHouse was one of three Chapters to also receive the university’s outstanding Dean’s Award.

1830 College Heights Road, Manhattan KS 66502 | ksfarmhouse.com | (785) 320-7920 40 K-STATE AGRICULTURIST fall 2019


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College of Agriculture Student Council

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785-456-2041 | www.kanequip.com

Supporting Farming and Ranching across Kansas and Nebraska for more than 50 years.

Support Students Unite Organizations Foster Relationships Follow K-State Ag on Facebook for Ag Council News & Updates

MINERAL SUPPLEMENT AND FOOD PLOT SEEDS

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T hree C ollege of Ag r iculture men take volle yball to the next le vel st or y by J A N A E McK I N N E Y

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en, volleyball and agriculture — three words not usually associated together, but they connect the lives of three students on campus. Coleman Nordhus, agronomy student; Dalton Dunn, horticulture student; and Wyatt Minihan, agricultural communications and journalism student, are three athletes on the men’s club volleyball team at Kansas

State University. All three credit their agriculture background to helping them be successful on the court.

SETTING AG R I C U LT U R A L F O U N DAT I O N S “Growing up with an agriculture background, you know what the

definition of hard work is,” Nordhus says. “I have a different mindset going into workouts because I have definitely done harder things on the farm than what I am doing in volleyball.” Beside hard work, Dunn adds time management among the skills coming into play when the team members balance volleyball with their coursework, clubs and jobs. “People always used to ask me, ‘Why are you doing volleyball?’” Dunn says. “It is just so much extra work, but it is something I love to do so of course I’m going to try and fit it in my schedule.”

HITTING THEIR STRIDE The club volleyball team restarted in 2016, and Minihan was approached as a high school senior to be the secretary for his team freshman fall semester. He came to Manhattan and played in sand volleyball games during his senior year, where he was able to see how the team worked together.

P H O T O A B O V E : From left to right, Coleman Nordhus, Wyatt Minihan and Dalton Dunn are three of the 17 members on the team. The team consists of students with interests ranging from agriculture to engineering.

For other students, tryouts are held during the first few weeks of class, and the officer board decides who to put on their two teams by position K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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“ I WA N T E D TO G O TO C O L L E G E A N D P L AY O N A T E A M . I W E N T TO A F E W UNIVERSITIES TO TOUR AND HEARD ABOUT K-STATE STARTING A CLUB TEAM.” —Wyatt Minihan Agricultural communications and journalism student

and volleyball skill. Annual dues cost $250, but players usually end up paying around $900 to $1,000 each because of travel costs and other expenses. “Every tournament that we go to in the fall semester is a pick-up tournament put on by another university, so typically that’s $150 a team to enter or $250 for two teams,” Minihan says. “The spring semester we are part of a conference, the Midwest Plains Conference, that is $1,500 for two teams to compete.” The Midwest Plains Volleyball Conference has 22 men’s collegiate club teams. Along with the conference tournaments, the club team also competes at other college-hosted volleyball tournaments. Twice-a-week practices on Ahearn Fieldhouse’s gym courts prepare the men for matches with plays and volleyball fundamentals. While some officers are responsible for planning the practices, the team has a sponsor, coach Dave Turner, who also attends practices to help the team. Turner works as an application scientist in the computer science department of the College of Engineering at K-State.

SERVING PER S ONAL CONNEC TIONS For all three teammates, it was a family member or friend who first got them interested in volleyball. “I grew up with two older sisters,” Dunn says. “When I was younger, they would always play volleyball with each fall 2019

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other because they were really close in age. I always wanted to join in.” He adds, “My first year of college, I was at the recreation center almost every night playing with a group of people.” Minihan’s first experience with volleyball was similar, but he played with his older cousin. Being only four miles away, he would be asked over often to play the sport with his extended family member, and she taught him the fundamentals. It was not until high school that he was able to learn more about the competitive nature of the game. “I wasn’t into football or cross country, so I decided to be volleyball manager for the women’s team,” Minihan says. “I wanted to go to college and play on a team. I went to a few universities to tour and heard about K-State starting a club team.”

His third year at K-State, Nordhus roomed with a member of the men’s club team, and he asked Nordhus if he would be interested in trying out for the team. Nordhus agreed and on the same day went to tryouts. They both made it onto the team, and Nordhus has been there ever since. All three agree they hope to continue playing past their final days at K-State. With their locations uncertain, none of them know where they may end up but want to keep playing the sport they all have a passion and competitive spirit for. “I love playing sports,” Dunn says. “I miss high school sports, so volleyball is like a high school sport that I get to do in college. That’s what I like about it. I love being a part of a team and working toward something.”

Nordhus did not start playing the sport until he was on campus. He was active in intramural sports with his fraternity, Alpha Gamma Rho, and was convinced by an older member to start playing on their intramural volleyball team.

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Student s share the ir routes f rom competitive judg ing teams to ma ster’s deg rees st o r y by K AC I F O R A K E R

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hiny championship trophies, first place plaques and engraved silver plates line the award cases in Throckmorton and Weber halls. Each day students glance at the cases as they head to class, but only a few choose to be a judging team member. Two students who took on the challenge of trying to be national champions were Kaylin Fink, an agronomy major, and Keayla Harr, animal sciences and industry major. Even after winning their final judging awards, they still wanted to improve their knowledge and pursue interests in meat science and agronomy, respectively, by working on their master’s degrees. In the trophy-lined cabinets, students like Fink and Harr see the legacy of judging teams’ success in the College of Agriculture, and are inspired to make their own mark on the competition. “When you see all the trophies in the cabinet and the national championships, you know you’re going to be a national champion,” Fink says. Even though Fink was not raised on a farm, her high school FFA program introduced her to agronomy. Harr’s interest in the Meat Judging Team was sparked by her family’s Hereford operation in Ohio.

POTENTIAL FOR SUCCESS After Harr’s first major meat judging contest, she realized she was in for more than just winning trophies.

confidence to make timely decisions. “From these contests, I realized I actually have the potential to be better than a lot of individuals,” Fink says. “I have worked hard and why not work another two years to improve myself that much more and get a master’s degree.” Although Fink did not originally plan to get a master’s degree, the team helped her realize her capability. In a competitive job market, Fink believes this degree and experience on the team will make her more marketable to employers. Harr says the spring competition season can be challenging as it takes time to grasp all of the information given to them. “It takes time to understand and learn all the information you are given, but everything eventually starts to click,” Harr says. “You learn how to juggle your time spent competing and working on school work.”

“We shocked a lot of people that didn’t think we would have the capability to go and win the National Western,” Harr says.

Collegiate judging teams give students industry knowledge, while also building skills that benefit students in their career path.

Collegiate judging competitions have multiple components that require students to be knowledgeable, but also have the

“Students who have been part of a judging team are well trained when it comes to critical thinking skills, time

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PHOTO TOP LEFT AND RIGHT M I D D L E : Kaylin Fink, agronomy student, sorts seed for the grain grading portion of the crop judging competition. PHOTO TOP AND BOTTOM R I G H T : Keayla Harr, animal sciences and industry student, records the temperature of a steak being used for consumer research.

management abilities, an ability to multitask and have keen decision-making processes,” says Travis O’Quinn, K-State meat judging coach. “These are skills that are an absolute must in graduate school. Students who come into graduate programs with a judging background are well prepared for the number of challenges that they face in these areas.”

THE JUDGING COMMUNITY Judging team members spend hours traveling the nation, usually in white, 15-passenger vans. Students form close friendships with their teammates and make connections with countless other competitors from all over the world. Both Fink and Harr say the people they met while competing had a significant impact on them as they chose to continue their education. “I started spending a lot of time with people who work hard at what they do from K-State and Iowa State,” Fink says. “Those people influenced me to think that getting a master’s is something I could do.” Harr admits that being a part of the Meat Judging Team was difficult at times, but she created lifelong friendships with people who constantly push her to strive for perfection. “The contest introduced me to the basic components of the industry, but I would also attribute a large part of my decision to get another degree in meat science to my coach,” Harr says. “The knowledge that he instilled in us to learn more and his passion for the meat industry prompted my interest.” Harr plans to get a master’s degree in meat science with an emphasis in the beef or fresh meat industries. After completing a six-month agronomy internship, Fink plans to return to school for a master’s degree focusing on wheat production. “I don’t necessarily want to sell things like a typical agronomist, but I want to be able to sell my education instead,” Fink says. “I want people to think of me as the knowledgeable agronomist.”

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“IT’S ALL ABOUT YOUR DRIVE AND YO U R PA S S I O N A N D W H AT YO U W A N T T O D O . T H A T ’ S R E A L LY W H A T IT COMES DOWN TO.” —Mekisha Cunningham Food science and industry student

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A nontraditional stude nt e x plain s he r v ie w s and e x pe r ie nces sto r y b y A L L I S O N WA K E F I E L D

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or a typical College of Agriculture student, a daily schedule might involve going to class, attending test reviews, participating in club meetings, and then going home to study and sleep. Add to that cooking dinner for the family, managing a career and helping a child with homework, and that is the life of 36-year-old Mekisha Cunningham. She never expected to be a full-time student walking on a college campus, but Mekisha says she is enjoying every minute of it. She is now a fourth-year student in food science and industry at Kansas State University.

L I F E I N T H E M I L I TA R Y Mekisha joined the U.S. Army in June after her senior year of high school in 2001. Tired of going to school, the military turned out to be like having any other job for Mekisha, but this job also matched her with her husband. They met in Fort Carson, Colorado. Mekisha and Dewayne got married two days before deploying to Iraq in 2003. “For our honeymoon, we had an all-inclusive paid trip to the desert,” Dewayne says. The Army gave Mekisha a chance to see the world, traveling to Iraq, Germany and Hawaii. Mekisha then applied for the Long Term Health Education and Training Program to help advance her career as a food safety warrant officer. In this role she serves as the expert for all matters dealing with food safety, such as coordinating proper food storage, preventing cross contamination and the intentional contamination of food. The military provides many benefits to assigned personnel. Mekisha says she wanted to set herself apart from her peer group and take advantage of those benefits, so she decided to attend college full-time while still on active duty. K-State was one of three universities Mekisha looked into for her education as a food safety warrant officer. “Kansas was at the bottom of my list,” Mekisha says. fall 2019

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She says a lot of people do not know her background or age unless she tells them, or they ask. “So I blend in with everyone else,” Mekisha says. One of her food chemistry lab group members, Anna Francis, a third-year student in food science, says having Mekisha in her lab group is enjoyable. “Mekisha is personable and organized,” Francis says. “She stays on top of her work, which is helpful in completing lab experiments on time.” Mekisha has earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration, completing coursework online. In choosing between a classroom or online learning experience, she says it depends on the person.

T O P P H O T O : Mekisha Cunningham talks with classmates during a food science class. She balances her studies with life outside of the classroom. B O T T O M P H O T O : Smiling in uniform, Mekisha stands proudly with her mother, Eva B. Butler, and her daughter, Gabrielle.

Dewayne says Kansas chose them. K-State was the only school to respond saying they would accept Mekisha into their program. Deanna Retzlaff, teaching assistant professor in food science and Mekisha’s mentor and adviser, provided her with a semester-by-semester plan of the classes she would need to take. Mekisha says the personal attention sold her on the program, and it now allows her to enhance skills and knowledge gained from military training.

A NONTRADITIONAL OUTLO OK Welcoming is the word Mekisha uses to describe her experiences at K-State. 48

“Both require discipline,” Mekisha says. “It’s all about your drive and your passion and what you want to do. That’s really what it comes down to.” Mekisha prefers learning on campus at K-State and says it is the social interaction with her fellow classmates and instructors that makes it so enjoyable. Being able to work with fellow students sitting around a table or walking down the hall to talk to an instructor one-on-one are real benefits to being on campus. Being out of high school for almost 20 years, Mekisha admits there are some things she has forgotten. Mekisha is not afraid to ask her younger classmates who have just recently graduated high school and seek guidance from them.

FINDING A BALANCE As the mother of a 12-year-old daughter, Mekisha says it has been beneficial to have her daughter Gabrielle’s help with homework assignments and vice versa. But even in her last semester of

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school, she admits to not having quite figured out how to balance school, motherhood and being a wife. “I pray a lot,” Mekisha says. “It is tough, but it is doable.” Mekisha and Dewayne are big sports fans and have enjoyed the atmosphere at K-State football and basketball games. Dewayne says he wanted to experience college life and the city of Manhattan. “The Kansas State experience has been that key piece that has really made an experience for us,” Dewayne says. “It is very embracing.” When dealing with failure and knowing that Gabrielle is watching her, Mekisha says she uses every situation as a learning experience to get herself on the right track and moving forward. “Failure scares me,” Mekisha says. “But to fail at something is that eye opener for you to get yourself together.”

LO OKING AHEAD Mekisha is excited to graduate and find balance again in her duties of both mom and wife. Mekisha has another five years before she retires from the military after Gabrielle graduates from high school. To all students, both traditional and not, Mekisha advises them to ask instructors for help and to use them to their fullest potential. “They will do everything in their power to help you pass,” Mekisha says. “They’re not going to give you the answer. But they will put you on the right track and it is up to you to follow that path.” Also, she encourages students to enjoy the experiences of college life and take things one day at a time. “We worry so much about what is going to happen next week or next month,” Mekisha says. “We can’t do anything about that. That is life in general. Once you worry about the things you can’t control, then you are just all over the place. Center yourself, take a deep breath and just take each day one day at a time.” K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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“As a Food Science major, the first course in this secondary major gave me a broad understanding on the complexities of our food system. It also provided valuable insight on the root of the issues we may face in producing enough food to feed our growing population. From a food science perspective, I especially enjoyed learning about fortifying foods to include the nutrients of an entire meal.” - Katheryn Gregerson, Food Science major Global Food Systems Leadership secondary major The secondary major, Global Food Systems Leadership is intended for students who want to study and exercise leadership on the grand challneges of feeding a gowing world population.

Requirements • 3 core courses • 9 credits in one of the five concentrations • 24 credit hours total

Follow us! @globalfoodsystemsleadership

@gfsl_ksu

For more information contact director of global food systems leadership program, Mary Kay Seifers marykay@ksu.edu fall 2019

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AGRICULTURAL COMMUNICATORS OF TOMORROW @KState_ACT

@KStateACT

@KState.ACT

2018-2019 ACT Officer team

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Why two student s value their exper iences working at the dair y unit and feed mill st or y by A L L I S O N WA K E F I E L D

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ust as a chef carefully blends ingredients for a perfect culinary experience, student workers at the Kansas State University feed mill and dairy unit strive to prepare the right nutritional balance in feed served to K-State’s Holsteins. Two College of Agriculture students, Trey Spinden and Julie Heslop, are putting their classroom training to practice through their on-campus jobs. “I think every feed science student should work at the feed mill,” says Spinden, a student in feed science. “I’ve learned so much from working with the professionals there, and I’m gaining more hands-on experience.” Originally connected to the position through his adviser, Spinden spends his days at the O.H. Kruse Feed Technology Innovation Center working with computers and operating a large amount of equipment in the mill. He says he most enjoys the manufacturing process. Heslop, a student in animal sciences and industry, found her position through a posting on the K-State Career Center website. She says she enjoys all aspects of animal care from feedings to milking.

THE GRIND While many of their tasks are routine, unpredictability is a common companion, too. “You could walk in and everything could be running smoothly,” Spinden says. “Or you can walk in and you could be having to take an entire pallet of feed to the fourth flour of the feed mill.” At the dairy unit, a student can do different jobs depending on their designated shift: feeding calves, milking cows, cleaning pens, helping with vaccinations, checking research cows and performing health checks. There are three calf chore shifts, afternoon maintenance chore shifts, and two milking shifts — 3 a.m. and 3 p.m. 52

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P H O T O L E F T : Trey Spinden, feed science student, operates the five-ton spelling machine at the K-State feed mill. P H O T O R I G H T : Julie Heslop, animal sciences and industry student, checks the temperature of a research cow at the K-State dairy.

The duties at the dairy provide Heslop with real-world experiences. When Heslop took a class about animal disease control and prevention, she says the dairy section was extremely easy to understand. “I didn’t have to study because I had experienced it firsthand at the dairy,” she says. Heslop says her experience in reproduction classes prompted her to ask questions at the dairy about techniques they use to improve efficiency. “Usually the cow can do it on her own,” Heslop says. “But someone experienced is there to tell us what to do if she needs help, and that is a really cool thing to be a part of.”

MISHAPS AND MILKING Spinden says working at the feed mill also closely relates to the material he learns in the classroom. He has learned to pay attention more and recognize what his actions are capable of because of his mistakes on the job. “A click on the computer might not mean much to you, but down the line

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in the system it could really affect something else,” Spinden says. “Being aware and focusing on what you are doing is extremely important.” Heslop says she has made a few mistakes, but she takes every misstep and makes it a lesson. “Everyone does fail,” Heslop says. “But once you make the mistake, you won’t make it again because you will remember it and watch for it next time.” After working at the dairy for several years, Heslop says she is now seeing some of the calves she bottle-fed in her first weeks at the dairy become productive cows, like her favorite cow, No. 169. “It was so cool to see her grow up and finally come into producing milk,” Heslop says.

B AT C H I N G A D V I C E Though there are hard times, Spinden says the best thing about his job at the feed mill is the camaraderie. “We learn from each other, and I’m going to remember all of that forever,” he says.

Spinden credits his experience at the feed mill for the internship he has had during the summer with Purina. “I went to the career fair, but I didn’t talk to them,” Spinden says. “They came to the feed mill and got my information. They then offered me the chance to interview for the internship because of my work.” Heslop says her commitment at the dairy helped her land a summer job as a horse wrangler in Colorado. “It showed that I will work long hours, I’m used to the hard labor of carrying heavy things, and I have a good work ethic,” Heslop says. She adds that her experience at the dairy unit has been rewarding and valuable, especially for someone planning to have a future career working with animals. She advises students to seize an opportunity to work at a research unit to gain further knowledge for their futures. “It is a good way to learn different management and handling practices that you can adapt to meet your own needs,” Heslop says. “Being able to read an animal’s behavior and look for sickness is so important. This will be the best hands-on experience you can get.” 53


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ASH TREE ADVOCATES How student s lear n about the emerald a sh bore r and protec t threatened campu s trees st or y by B R YA N N A C O O K

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trolling through the Kansas State University campus, many trees line walking paths. Imagine if 250 of those trees were gone. This could be possible because of the emerald ash borer, an invasive insect making its way to the K-State campus and the surrounding community. Over 20 years ago it came to the U.S. from Asia, first landing in Detroit, Michigan. Emerald ash borer is in eight Kansas counties and 30 states. A few years ago, the USDA confirmed emerald ash borer was found in Kansas City, Kansas. “In the case of EAB, it was able to spiral out of control because there are no natural predators in the United States,” says Cathie Lavis, professor in the Department of Horticulture and Natural Resources. “Initially, EAB was moved in firewood that was used for camping because people didn’t know they were transporting this pest, so it moved rather rapidly, especially up in the north,” Lavis says.

A LEARNING EXPERIENCE At K-State, Lavis is dedicated to providing learning opportunities for her students using hands-on experiences. “Incorporating EAB activities into the curriculum educates students, which 54

translates into using what they learn to educate the campus community and into their chosen careers,” Lavis says. Michael Anaya and Caitlin Carlson, both horticulture students, took part in the Emerald Ash Borer detection activities P H O T O A B O V E : Cathie Lavis, K-State professor, holds a in their Spring 2018 piece of an ash tree that had been affected by emerald ash borer. arboriculture class with Lavis. “It was overall a great experience the help of a representative from the that I’ll never forget, and I learned to Kansas Department of Agriculture. never move firewood from an area,” Anaya says. “This is how it spreads After they debarked a section of so I make sure to warn everyone.” the tree, they placed Saran wrap Anaya and Carlson helped girdle two ash trees on campus as part of the class. This is done during the monitoring process because it stresses the tree and makes it more attractive to pests like emerald ash borer. Ash trees, particularly under stress, are susceptible to other pests and diseases, so after they debarked a section of the tree, Anaya, Carlson and other arboriculture students were involved with girdling the tree and making it more attractive to pests like the Emerald Ash Borer. They debarked two ash trees on the north end of campus in front of Dole Hall with

around the debarked region. They placed a sticky paste, Tanglefoot, on the wrap with hopes of catching incoming emerald ash borer.

“It was incredible to be a part of the EAB detection process,” Carlson says. “It’s something that the industry is constantly talking about. To have this hands-on experience with a ‘hot topic’ in the industry is crucial for us as horticulture students. Experiences like this make us better equipped to handle the situation.” After the two campus trees had been stressed for a growing season, with K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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“ T O H AV E T H I S H A N D S - O N E X P E R I E N C E W I T H A H O T T O P I C I N T H E I N D U S T RY I S C R U C I A L F O R U S A S H O R T I C U LT U R E S T U D E N T S . ” —Caitlin Carlson Horticulture and natural resources student

hopes of attracting incoming emerald ash borers, they were removed and brought to the K-State Gardens’ parking lot in October. Students in Lavis’ class were able to remove the remaining bark and look for signs of the Emerald Ash Borer.

THINKING LONG-TERM Testing for Emerald Ash Borer and not finding the invasive species at K-State is a relief for students, but they also said it would have been a valuable experience to detect them, if present. “Students thought it would be noteworthy if they were the first to discover EAB on campus,” Lavis says. “Maybe they will next October when the spring 2019 ash trees are peeled.” fall 2019

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“There’s nothing we can do to prevent them from coming to campus,” Lavis says. “EAB will come to our campus and the Manhattan community, we just aren’t sure when. Aside from removing ash trees rated in poor and fair condition now, the Tree Campus committee is deciding how many and which ash should be saved using chemicals that can be soil applied or injected into trees. Once this process begins, in order to save the trees, treatment is required for the life of the tree.” Lavis and members of Tree Campus USA will be deciding which trees to save on campus. K-State’s green ash tree in the Waters Hall quad is one of at least 20 likely to be treated. Beyond K-State, emerald ash borer will continue to travel to other communities.

FUNDING AND AWA R E N E S S Using a recently developed five-year plan to address the imminent arrival of emerald ash borer, new trees will be planted to replace the ash trees that were removed. But this requires money from donations or grants. Lavis has received several Green Action Grants in previous years and uses some of that grant to plant new trees in place of the old ones. “The problem with Emerald Ash Borer is that it doesn’t care whether it’s black ash or green ash or white ash, it will attack all species of ash trees,” Lavis says. “When emerald ash borer arrives it’s not just going to stop here at Kansas State. It will spread to any tree in the city.”

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Stude nts g et hand s - on e x pe r ie nce lear ning about food proccessing techniques sto r y b y M I K F O X

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idely known for its dairy bar, Call Hall houses the Food Science Institute at Kansas State University. While some may only visit the building for the famous Purple Pride ice cream, there is another product created by students that sits on the shelves of the dairy bar and has helped students learn more about food science. 56

Holiday Jam is well-known to students in associate professor Kelly Getty’s Fundamentals of Food Processing class. This is a product the class learns how to make while also learning how their food is created. The class instructed by Getty teaches students about thermal processing, freezing, drying and alternative food processing techniques. Holiday Jam

is just one of the many products students get to create while learning about the various techniques of food creation and processing. “Food Science 305, Fundamentals of Food Processing, teaches students about thermal processing, freezing, drying and some alternative food processing techniques such as radiation and high pressure processing,” says Getty. K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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Students learn more about these processing techniques during the lecture. Then they go into the laboratory to experience the process first hand. Getty says she wants students to see what happens when a product is made correctly versus what happens when protocols for making the product are altered.

STUDENT PERSPEC TIVE According to Haley Watts, a third year student in food science, having a chance to learn about food preservation and safety techniques in the lab was what drew her to the class. “Food Science 305 encompasses learning food processing and preservation techniques,” Watts says. “Being creative in trying new flavor combinations for foods such as cupcakes and discovering the importance of ingredients like baking soda in pancakes is what the lab is all about.” A second-year student in food science, Jaden Castinado, agrees with Watts. Focusing on several basic steps—mixing and separating thermal processing, dehydration, and cooling and chilling— Castinado says the class helps to prepare students for future careers no matter what career path they take. “I think it is a friendly introduction into food science, especially for non-majors who need a class with a lab or are interested in food science,” Castinado says. While Watts and Castinado are both food science majors, Getty says the class generally is open to all K-State students. Animal science, agricultural communications and agriculture education students are just a few of the different majors represented in the class. Class enrollment has grown since Getty began teaching it. The average number of students that Getty teaches in a semester is approximately 60, and students say this is because they enjoy the class. “I really enjoy the lab and getting to taste different products we have made,” Watts says. “Trying out different flours in pancakes and making our fall 2019

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P H O T O A B O V E : Marie Biondi, food science student, works with apples in a Food Science 305 lab class.

own icing flavor combinations were fun products to create and taste.” Though Castinado is a distance student for the lecture portion of the class, he says the lab portion is his favorite part of the class, too. “Each week we focus on a new process and create a product to help supplement that lesson,” Castinado says. “It is very interesting to see how foods we eat every day can be used to demonstrate a lesson in food processing.” Although students learn how make different products, none of the items they make in the class are sold in Call Hall. Students are encouraged to participate in the Food Science Club and help make Holiday Jam and Apple Butter on designated Fridays during the semester. The sales of these products helps students pay for various field trips and product development.

CONNEC TING AG R I C U LT U R E Getty says that she is seeing a decline in the number of students who are involved or have backgrounds in production agriculture.

“I’m seeing more students even if they’re in agriculture, even if they’re in animal science, that do not know about food processing,” Getty says. “I’ll ask them things about production agriculture. I’ll ask if any of them grow soybeans or wheat or sorghum. And I’m seeing less of that. Students are coming from an agriculture background where they’ve grown cattle, but they’ve gotten all their hay and grain sourced. So, we’re talking more and more about that farm-to-fork continuum.” Throughout the class, students have the opportunity to tour two different facilities, a milk processing facility and an extruder plant. In addition to their own hands-on experiences in the lab, students see how the processing techniques are applied in the real world. “Food Science 305 allows students to learn about the industry and how their food is made,” says Watts. “By learning about processing techniques such as dehydration, canning, and blanching, you can better understand and trust the mechanics used to make the food you eat. If more students took Food Science 305, they might have better faith in the food industry and the safety procedures required to deliver a safe product to the consumer.” 57


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A ne w class focu s es on how people have inte rac ted w ith plant s over time st ory by J A N A E McK I N N E Y

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lanthropology can be defined as the interaction of plants and people. As a brand-new class offered by the Department of Horticulture and Natural Resources, HORT 390, Planthropology: Plants and You covers examples of the impact of plants on people and societies over time. Chad Miller, associate professor of horticulture and course instructor, designed the new class to appeal to non-horticulture students. “I have wanted to teach a course like this ever since coming to K-State,” Miller says. “This class provides an opportunity to look at horticulture and plants from a different aspect.” Learning about the culturing and biology aspect of plants is only one part of this class. The anthropology 58

side of the course is how people interact with the horticultural plants. Miller says many plants are symbolic and beneficial to humans. “Imagine if humans never figured out that harvesting the beans of the coffee plant and processing them and using in a drink had some effect,” Miller says. “What would many people be drinking in the morning? Maybe tea. But what if we hadn’t discovered tea and its effects? Those findings highlight the importance of plants in one aspect and the lasting impact on humans and societies that plants have.”

LEC TURE AND LABS The course meets twice a week. On Monday of each week, the class is structured like a lecture, and

the Wednesday of each week is a lab where the students can have a hands-on interaction. Each week the class focuses on a specific topic like hydroponics or floral design. Some lab experiences include making a floral design, creating a mushroom log and bale, and growing plants without soil, or hydroponically in a water and mineral nutrient solution. “Hydroponics was my favorite lab,” says Erica Stuhlsatz, second-year student in horticulture. “It is a unique way to grow plants and anyone can do it.” Outside experts are brought in to teach some of the lab activities. The floral design lab was taught by Irina Sheshukova, a horticulture instructor who specializes in flower design. K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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After students learned about cut flower production and the world supply chain, students made two Valentine’s Day projects in lab class.

TRIPS AND TOURS The course also connects students with local businesses that have horticulture connections. The class took field trips to Radina’s Coffeehouse and Roastery, Liquid Art Winery and Golden Prairie Honey Farm. The field trip to Radina’s focused on the history of coffee and how coffee is processed before reaching consumers. The owner, Wade Radina, spoke to the students at one of his many locations. Radina was a K-State faculty member in the College of Business fall 2019

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when he bought his first coffee shop in Aggieville, which he still owns. Radina shared his extensive knowledge of coffee and why he uses the specific beans in his stores. After talking about the history of his store, he showed the students how his shop roasts coffee every day.

F E E D B AC K A N D T H E FUTURE There were 18 students enrolled in the class in the spring semester, most of them horticulture majors, including Stuhlsatz. “This course can benefit non-horticulture majors by introducing them to different aspects of the

horticulture field while having fun with hands-on activities,” Stuhlsatz says. “The horticulture field is a broad range and this class covers some of the most unique parts.” Miller hopes more non-major students will enroll in the future. But to begin with, Miller let horticulture students take the course and will use their input to improve the class for other students. “The end goal for this class is for students to learn more about and to appreciate horticulture and plants and have fun at the same time.” Miller says. “I don’t want students to think it’s a drag. I want students to learn and be engaged and to say ‘Wow, that’s interesting and fun—I never thought about it that way.’” 59


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Mar y B eth Kirkham named University D i sting ui shed Profess or story by M I R A N DA H O AG

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he title of University Distinguished Professor is a lifetime title that represents the highest honor Kansas State University can bestow on its faculty, an award that recognizes those making outstanding contributions to teaching, research, and service to their professions and communities,” according to the K-State website. To her fellow faculty and students, Mary Beth Kirkham, professor of agronomy, is well deserving of this award.

had questions, she would drop what she was doing to come help,” Antony says.

Punctual, dedicated, and above all, sweet, are words one student used to describe Kirkham. Reshma Antony, graduate student in agronomy, published a paper with Kirkham’s help, and they have grown closer with one another over the past four years.

Kirkham’s parents, both professors, taught her about science and English. After beginning her studies in education at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, Kirkham soon realized she had stronger interests in biology, especially soil and water conservation. Since this change, she has been dedicated to the biology field.

“I wouldn’t say she is my professor, but a member of the family,” Antony says. “She spent Christmas with my family this past year.” When discussing research, there is a spark of excitement in Kirkham’s eyes. “When I was beginning my research, Dr. Kirkham explained different ways to set up the experiments, and whenever I 60

Kirkham’s own collection of research ranges from determining if putting sludge on old mines creates new plant life to the effects of more carbon dioxide on plants. She has authored or co-authored over 300 published works and constantly reads to gain more knowledge, improving her experiments and keeping up with scientific developments.

“She will spend hours with her students, or as much time as it takes so she can explain the material as in depth as possible,” Reshma says. Kirkham’s work is not only experiments and teaching. She has also written a textbook, which she uses in her classroom.

“My sister told me I should publish my experiments as a textbook, so as soon as I got home I started typing and typing,” she says. “Once I sent the draft to a publisher, they accepted it immediately.” She was surprised to find out that her commitment to students and research had earned her consideration for the University Distinguished Professor award. “When the dean called me that Sunday night, I was in disbelief,” Kirkham says. “I almost had to pinch myself. I never thought I would actually receive the award.” University faculty determine who receives the award. She credits her success as a professor to her parents — her father for sharing his curiosity of the science world and her mother for demonstrating the professionalism of the English department. When asked about retirement in the future, Kirkham says, “I have a lot of research I would still like to accomplish, so not quite yet.”

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Growing Opportunities

Meetings:

Held every other Tuesday at 6p.m. in room 2414 Throckmorton

Club Activities:

• Valentines’ Day Rose Sale • Bedding Plant Sale • Mum Sale • Mini Poinsettia and Succulent Sale • Industry Tours

To get involved email clavis@ksu.edu or visit us at hnr.k-state.edu/undergraduate/horticulture/ clubs-and-activities/ hort-club.html KSU Horticulture Club

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College of Agriculture supports Cats’ Cupboard with voucher programs story by K AC I F O R A K E R

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he College of Agriculture provides an education to about 3,000 students, but this year it is providing more than just knowledge to Kansas State University students. The Department of Animal Sciences and Industry and the Milling Science Club has donated food to the campus food pantry, Cats’ Cupboard. “The program is really about helping students, and the department was in a position where we were able to help,” says Evan Titgemeyer, animal sciences and industry research coordinator. “Our undergraduate program is one of the largest at K-State, and this program was one way that we could help not only some of our own students, but also those across all of campus.” The department created a voucher program that can be redeemed for perishable food items. Eighty vouchers are offered per month and each is worth $20. Purchases with the

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voucher are made at Call Hall Dairy Bar for hamburger, milk, cheese and eggs. Because of its contributions, the department received the 2019 “Friends of Cats’ Cupboard” award. According to the Campus Climate Assessment Project, 39.4% of students who said they dealt with financial hardships had difficultly affording food. Cats’ Cupboard was created to prevent food insecurity from being a barrier to student success. Though, at its current location in Fairchild Hall, Cats’ Cupboard can only offer non-perishable food items. “By providing high quality animal-based proteins, we’re allowing students to consume a more nutrition rich diet, which we expect will translate into healthier living and better achievement,” Titgemeyer says. The Milling Science Club also developed a voucher, which can

be redeemed for a pack of flour or pancake mix. These items are made by the Milling Science Club using flour produced at the Hal Ross Flour Mill. After receiving a voucher from Cats’ Cupboard, individuals can pick up items at Shellenberger Hall during a weekly flour sale held on Wednesdays. The club chose to donate these items as they offer the most value and nutrition per pack, says Shawn Green, Milling Science Club president. The flour is an all-purpose flour and the pancake mix is a basic mix, which requires only a few additional ingredients to make a meal. “Our main goal with this partnership is to help those in need and do what we can to prevent food insecurity on campus,” Green says. “Feeding people is a huge part of the milling industry, and I believe this gives our club the opportunity to see this first hand on campus through this program.”

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‘Growing Our Mindset’ forum talks about diversity and inclusion st ory by B R YA N N A C O O K

inclusion. Compass Minerals, a corporate partner for the event, is a company that produces minerals and has locations in North America and South America. “Diversity is all the sets of differences and similarities when you think about people and the experiences they have,” Jones says. “Of course gender and ethnicity are divisions of diversity. Those are real and those are important, but there are differences in experiences, differences in values and differences in cultures.”

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n March 5, 2019, the Kansas State University’s College of Agriculture student leadership gathered to explore diversity through a forum titled “Growing Our Mindset: Understanding Diversity and Inclusion.” It was the fourth in a series structured to bring about an open dialogue among the K-State agriculture community. Angela Jones, senior vice president for people and culture at Compass Minerals in Kansas City, Kan., talked to K-State students about diversity in the workforce and the leadership needed to achieve diversity and

Zelia Wiley, assistant dean and director of diversity in the College of Agriculture, was asked to help facilitate the forum, where 106 participants were in attendance. Wiley, who also advises the Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, Related Sciences program at K-State, says she hopes these forums will help students work well together and be culturally confident. “I can’t get my results if I haven’t engaged and empowered my workforce, that happens to be diverse,” Jones says. “I have to be inclusive. I have to bring out the best in everyone. I have to know how each person is different, and how I can maximize on that. And that’s the power of diversity and inclusion, because once you get those diverse thoughts going, you’re going to be able to fuel innovation.”

Meat sale showroom opens in Weber Hall st ory by E M I LY M E I N H A R D T

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decided not to rebuild. Following the tornado, students began selling meat out of the meat lab a year later along with continuing sales through the Call Hall Dairy Bar.

“There used to be a meat store until the tornado in 2008,” says John Wolf, meat lab manager. “Our goal is to make it more convenient for the customer, so that is why we decided to open it back up.”

“It gives the students an opportunity to work with the public and market a product,” Wolf says.

he grand opening of the Meat Sale Showroom within the animal sciences and industry department was held April 6 during Kansas State University’s Open House. This store is located within Weber Hall and hosts a weekly meat sale in Room 166 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Fridays.

During the 2008 tornado, one of the rooms in Weber Hall that housed the previous meat store was damaged. When the meat store was destroyed, the department fall 2019

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Since the opening of the meat sale showroom Wolf says there has been a notable increase in the amount of sales.

The meat lab will still continue to market meat products such as steaks and ground beef out of the Dairy Bar at Call Hall. However, the selection will be decreased to complement the larger selection now available at the meat store. 63


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Two students reflect on year in Snyder Leadership Legacy Fellows story by J A N A E McK I N N E Y

says. “Most importantly, I learned to enjoy the presence of high-quality people around me and the wonderful places that can lead you.” The fellows were also invited to attend workshops throughout the year focused on specific leadership traits and how to work with others. One workshop in particular stood out for Rodriguez.

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ercedes Rodriguez, student in international agribusiness, and Michael McKinney, student in feed science, were two of the 41 fourth-year students chosen for the 2018-2019 class of Snyder Leadership Legacy Fellows. Inspired by Bill Snyder and his legacy as a leader, the program is sponsored by the Staley School of Leadership Studies and partners with K-State Athletics. “I thought I was wrapping up and moving on from college,” Rodriguez says. “Snyder fellows really brings you back into why you chose K-State and why we are here. It is one of the best things that happened throughout my collegiate career, and that was something that I didn’t think would happen during my senior year.”

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The programming for the 2018-2019 class began in May 2018 with a two-day retreat. Students learned about one another as well as the foundations of the program. They were able to meet coach Bill Snyder, previous football players and Staley School of Leadership Studies faculty. After returning from summer break, the fellows started the fall semester with a back-to-school kickoff. Throughout the fall semester, the fellows worked together to coach youth teams playing a variety of sports, ranging from football to volleyball. Both Rodriguez and McKinney say their agriculture backgrounds helped them during the leadership program. “I learned how to be kind to people and open to new experiences,” McKinney

“We had one of the workshops on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator,” Rodriguez says. “That really helps going forward into future careers, how employees are going to work with each other and how I am going to work with other co-workers.” Both students say their future has been changed through this experience, and they are going forward with a different perspective on life. “This experience has allowed me to have a complete change of mind when I look at my life,” McKinney says. “I learned that a positive mindset is crucial in whatever situation, because it may just be a learning experience for the future. I began to understand how each person has their own story and struggles, and how it is so darn important to be kind to people no matter what.”

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Wicoff honored as Truman Scholar st ory by M I R A N DA H O AG

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lara Wicoff, third-year student in agricultural economics, was recognized as a 2019 Harry S. Truman Scholarship recipient in April. Wicoff is from Iola, Kan., and only the 35th Kansas State University student to have been selected for the nationally competitive award, tailored for those entering careers in public service.

America, I want to be actively engaged in and contributing to the food policy discussion in Washington, D.C. and the efforts to reach zero hunger.”

“Upon entering public service, I plan on addressing the wicked problem of food insecurity,” Wicoff says. “Whether working in support of a legislative body such as the Senate Agriculture Committee, a federal agency such as the Congressional Budget Office, or a nonprofit organization such as Feeding

“When I received the phone call from President Myers informing me that I had been selected as a Truman Scholar, my initial reaction was one of immense gratitude,” she says. “I immediately called my parents to tell them the news, and then reached out to the individuals who had supported me throughout the application process.”

While a student at K-State, she has completed an internship with U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry and contributed to on-campus organizations in the College of Agriculture.

Professor Owensby celebrates 55 years at K-State st ory by A L L I S O N WA K E F I E L D

Today, Owensby has taught the kids, and even grandkids, of some of his first students at K-State. Owensby says his teaching style involves giving students more applied thinking questions on his exams. “You have enough knowledge to remember information,” Owensby says. Owensby, also known by many as “The God of Grass,” has spoken at many universities around the world such as Oxford, Stanford and the Royal Society in London about range and fire research.

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’ve got the perfect job,” says Clenton Owensby, professor of agronomy at Kansas State University. Owensby is celebrating 55 years of working at K-State, conducting research and teaching classes on range management. When Owensby first began teaching, he says he had stage fright and could not say 10 words to students.

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When asked about when he will retire, Owensby says he will retire when he gets up in the morning and no longer wants to go to work. “If you like what you do, it’s not a job,” Owensby says. “I’m the luckiest son-of-a-gun out there to get to do what I do every day.”

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College of Agriculture Ag Fest celebrates college connections story by E M I LY M E I N H A R D T

college competed for the title of “Mr. Ag.” Each of the five contestants werejudged on K-State pride, a talent of his choice and responses to questions regarding his K-State experience. Andrew Dorsch, bakery science student representing the College of Agriculture Ambassadors, was named Mr. Ag.

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ince Kansas State University’s founding in 1863, students have been creating traditions that bind Wildcats together. One special tradition for the College of Agriculture is Ag Fest. This event allows students to relax, interact and have some fun. For the 2019 Spring semester, Ag Fest was held April 8-13 to provide this opportunity. “Ag Fest has been celebrated in a variety of ways in recent history,” says Kyler Langvardt, Ag Council public relations chair. “Each year, it is hosted by the College of Ag Student Council. Events like a barbeque, dodgeball tournament and speaker series have taken place in the past. This year we chose events that allowed us to connect with a variety of organizations across campus like Cats’ Cupboard, Minorities in

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Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences and Ag Ambassadors.” Ag Council members dedicated many hours to planning a variety of unique events, coordinating with staff across campus and advertising the events of the week, says Reid Huffman, Ag Council activities coordinator. It required the coordinated effort and teamwork of all members. “We wanted to because we felt that it was an important week that a lot of students look forward to,” Huffman says. “The goal was to make an event where all of the College of Agriculture could come together and have fun.” The week kicked off on Monday with the Mr. Agriculture Competition, an event where contestants from various organizations within the

On Tuesday, students gathered on Fairchild Lawn for Donate for Dogs. Students who brought a canned good to donate to Cats’ Cupboard, an on-campus food pantry, enjoyed hot dogs. To help relieve mid-week college stress, Pet Away Stress took place on Waters Lawn Wednesday. Students walking by played and pet a variety of dogs and even a turtle. Students gave back to the college by volunteering to help at the Waters Hall cleanup service activity on Saturday, April 13. They gathered to clean out flowerbeds, rake leaves and trim trees. “There aren’t many celebratory events that bring together the entire college,” Langvardt says. “Ag Fest is one of the few ways students from the College of Agriculture and around campus can celebrate the unique family atmosphere that the College of Agriculture provides to our students and faculty.”

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ATM Club continues tradition of spring lawnmower clinic st ory by A S H L E Y M c K E N N Y

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he Agricultural Technology Management Club helped the community prepare for spring months by hosting a lawnmower clinic March 29-31. The clinic was first held in 1986 and continues to be a fundraiser for the club. “It is a long-lasting tradition the club is proud of and community members really enjoy the service,” says Ben Lampereur, student in agricultural technology management and club president. The club strives to keep students up-to-date with the industry, supplement classroom learning and

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offer a way for students to meet other students within their major. The funds from the clinic help students pay for field trips to attend industry events or go on manufacturing tours. “Our first trip is to Husker Harvest Days up in Grand Island, Nebraska, in September or August,” Lampereur says. “In spring, we will go on another trip somewhere else, so last year we went up to Wisconsin and toured the CNH Industrial facility. This year, we went to Louisville, Kentucky, for the National Farm Machinery show. So, this funds all of that.”

Club members clean the lawn mowers, change the oil, sharpen the blades, and replace old filters and spark plugs. If a specific lawn mower needs more service, they do offer that at an extra charge. The club averages around 250 mowers each year and made more than $5,500 from the 2019 fundraiser. “Personally, I have spent over 90 hours planning, running the event, delivering mowers and making repairs,” Lampereur says. “Some of our more involved member spent 25 hours, and the average member spent 4 to 8 hours.” 67


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Alpha of Clovia 4-H Cooperative Leadership House Former 4-Hers or similar leadership background

Up to 62 women live in house

Cultivating Professional Women in Agriculture www.ksusigmaalpha.com

$1,900 per semester (rent, food, laundry)

Check out our Facebook for application deadlines in the spring

Like our page, Alpha of Clovia 4-H Cooperative Leadership House!

Fellowship

Service

alphaofclovia@gmail.com

K-State Bakery Science Club Check us out on social media for more information

Bake Sale every Wednesday

All majors welcome to bake with us Tuesdays at 4 p.m.

Club members pictured in Chicago at annual conference

First floor of Shellenberger Hall

Dinner provided for all participants!

@SweetSolutionsBakery 68

@BakeClubKSU

@BakeryScienceClubKSU K-STATE AGRICULTURIST

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Making a Difference in Agriculture FEATURES

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The Department of Communications and Agricultural Education offers a wide variety of degree options. Study communicating about agricultural or environmental sciences. Gain hands-on experience working with real clients on communication strategies. Learn from virtually every facet of agriculture and specialize in working with people. Prepare to teach agriculture or agricultural “The faculty is always willing and able to help in any way you need, and is a great

resource to use when looking

for internships or help in class. The classes prepare you for

your future in the industry by

sciences in secondary and post-secondary schools. Study and exercise leadership on the grand challenges of feeding a growing world population through a systems thinking approach. Broaden your career options and expand your technical competence, preparing you for numerous careers upon graduation.

teaching techniques that will serve you in the future.”

If any of this interests you, check out the following degree options: • Agricultural Communications and Journalism • Agricultural Education • Master of Science in Agricultural Education and Communication • Leadership Communication Ph.D. • Global Food Systems Leadership Secondary Major

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1612 Claflin Road - 301 Umberger Hall - Manhattan, KS 66506 - 785-532-5804


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Ag Partners ........................................................... 39 AgrAbility.............................................................. 35 Agriculture Future of America............................. 08 Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow......... 51 Alpha Gamma Rho Fraternity............................... 01 Alpha of Clovia...................................................... 68 Animal Sciences and Industry.............................. 25 Animal Science Family and Friends Reunion...... 39 Bakery Science Club.............................................. 68 BTI Implement...................................................... 39 Center for Rural Enterprise Engagement ............ 03 College of Agriculture......................................... IFC College of Agriculture Student Council............... 41 Collegiate Cattlewomen........................................ 08 Communications and Agricultural Education Department............................................................ 69 Cooking with the Cowboy..................................... 51 FarmHouse Fraternity........................................... 40 Fink Beef Genetics................................................. 02 Food Science Institute........................................... 10 Global Campus...................................................... 03 Grund Beef Genetics............................................. 11 70

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Global Food Systems Leadership.......................... 49 Grain Science and Industry................................... 50 Heartland Plant Innovations................................. 03 Horticulture Club ................................................. 61 KanEquip............................................................... 41 Kansas Beef Checkoff............................................ 26 Kansas Corn........................................................... 38 Kansas Crop Improvement Association............... 51 Kansas Department of Agriculture.................... IBC Kansas FFA Foundation........................................ 10 Kansas Farm Bureau............................... Back Cover Kansas Soybean Commission............................... 10 Kansas Wheat........................................................ 35 Kansas Wheat Alliance.......................................... 08 K-State Agricultural Education............................ 26 Melissa Photography............................................. 35 Mid Kansas Cooperative....................................... 17 Real Deal G2 Seeds................................................ 41 Renew Kansas Association ................................... 26 Sigma Alpha Professional Sorority....................... 68 Wheat State Agronomy Club................................. 06

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DID YOU MISS PRIDE & PRECISION As a member of the university marching band, Joshua Stucky, student in agribusiness, arrives to K-State football games six hours before kickoff. He and other agriculture students seek personal development through musical activities.

S WA R M I N G F O R S U B S C R I B E R S Jeremy Marshall, associate professor of entomology, spends about 12 hours producing one minute of content for his YouTube channel, Insect Fusion. Students in his classes perform better on difficult exam questions because of the engaging videos.

PA I N T I N G W I T H A P U R P O S E Painting George W. Bush’s dog Barney and Kentucky Derby racehorse Lawyer Ron are just a few achievements Jane Metz, K-State alumna and sporting dog artist, has accomplished during her career.

A S H T R E E A D V O C AT E S The invasive insect species, emerald ash borer, has infected trees in eight Kansas counties and 30 states. K-State students are teducating the community about this threat.

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Growing Kansas Agriculture

CULTIVATINGLEADERS Kansas Department of Agriculture

Agriculture is Kansas’ largest industry and economic driver, employing more than 238,000 people, nearly 13 percent of the Kansas workforce. The Kansas Department of Agriculture is doing our part by offering year-round student internships, part-time jobs and full-time careers. If you are interested in being part of our team, visit www.agriculture.ks.gov/jobs.

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1320 K-STATEResearch AGRICULTURIST Park Drive | Manhattan, Kansas 66502 | www.agriculture.ks.gov

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Profile for Lisa Moser

Kansas State Agriculturist Fall 2019  

The fall 2019 issue of the Kansas State Agriculturist student publication.

Kansas State Agriculturist Fall 2019  

The fall 2019 issue of the Kansas State Agriculturist student publication.

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