MSU College of Agriculture hosts first 'College of Ag Connects' forum Jan. 15 - Montana Stockgrowers Association
The Montana State University College of Agriculture and Montana Agricultural Experiment Station invite members of the agricultural community and the public to attend its first college-wide public forum, “College of Ag Connects” on Monday, Jan. 15 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The forum is slated to engage with the Montana agricultural community on current and local issues by highlighting relevant, ongoing college programs and projects in agricultural teaching, research, and Extension. Faculty from each of the college’s five academic departments will present overviews of their teaching and research, followed by a question and answer session. MSU Vice President of Agriculture Charles Boyer will deliver opening and closing remarks. Tracy Dougher, associate dean of MSU’s College of Agriculture, said she hopes College of Ag Connects becomes an annual winter event for the college. “As a cornerstone college of the land-grant mission at MSU, it’s important we continually provide face-to-face venues to connect with our partners and colleagues, in addition to digital means,” she said. “January is a good month to share updates on our diverse agricultural research and activity when most producers and agencies are preparing for the new year.” College of Ag Connects will be held in Room 125 in Linfield Hall. Lunch costs $10 in MSU’s Miller Dining Hall, but the event is free and open to the public, though registration is encouraged. Registration forms can be found at Visitors are welcome to park in university parking lots designated SB and F for the day, as Jan. 15 is a federal holiday and MSU classes will not be in session and offices will be closed. Patrick Hatfield, head of MSU’s Department of Animal and Range Sciences, organized a similar departmental meeting in past years with great success. “Our annual meeting with the Stillwater Range Association stakeholders in the Animal and Range Sciences Department eventually grew to include presentations from other departments in the college, and we received requests to expand the program to the entire College of Agriculture, Experiment Station and Extension,” he said. “We’re glad to do just that and hope the event is an opportunity for dialogue and feedback on our programs and research.” Hatfield said the event is modeled after summer field days in the Department of Research Centers, where seven remote MAES research centers host a day to share programs and research. College of Ag Connects faculty presentations are as follows: Michelle Flenniken, assistant professor in the Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology, “Honey Bee Biology and Viruses” Vince Smith, professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics, “Public Funding for Agricultural Research and Development: A Long Run Crisis?” Jane Boles, associate professor in the Department of Animal and Range Sciences, “Value-added Beyond the Carcass: Meat Processing Product Development” Mark Quinn, department head of the Washington, Idaho, Montana, Utah Regional Program in Veterinary Medicine, “WIMU Regional Program in Veterinary Medicine” Diane Charlton, assistant professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics, “Adjusting to an Era of Fewer Farm Workers” Stephanie Ewing, associate professor in the Department of Land Resources and Environmental Sciences, “Judith Basin Nitrogen in Groundwater” Blake Wiedenheft, assistant professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, “CRISPR Mediated Gene Editing and Agricultural Commodities” Dustin Perry, assistant professor in the Division of Agricultural Education, “Keeping Agricultural Youth Safe: The Ag Education Safety Initiative” Lance McNew, assistant professor in the Department of Animal and Range Sciences, “Working Lands & Wildlife: Understanding Wildlife-Habitat Relationships to Improve Agroecosystems” Kevin McPhee, MSU pulse crop breeder in the Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology, “Pulse Crop Breeding and Genetics” Bruce Maxwell, director of the Montana Institute on Ecosystems, “Climate Assessment” For more information, contact Patrick Hatfield at or call 406-994-4850. Source: MSU