Tag Archives: Students

MARE Center undergraduate summer internship open for applications

The Middleburg Agricultural Research and Extension Center’s undergraduate summer internship is open to applications for summer 2016! Applications are due Feb. 5, 2016.

Objective: To help prepare undergraduate students for careers in the equine industry, academia, or the veterinary sciences through applying classroom knowledge in a real world setting and learning new skills through meaningful research and Extension projects.

The internship will be offered in summer 2016 and is located at the MARE Center, a 420-acre equine facility located in the heart of Virginia’s horse country. This is an immersive learning environment for those students who are sincere in their desire to secure employment in the equine industry and/or pursue post-baccalaureate education in graduate or veterinary school. This novel program provides substantive and authentic experiences that result in the ultimate capstone experience.

Interns will assist with all ongoing research and Extension activities at the MARE Center. Each intern will be assigned a specific project area. Project areas will include topics such as equine nutrition and health, pasture management, conservation and land stewardship, equine reproduction, and youth development (4-H). Interns will be involved with all aspects of their specified project including literature review, protocol development, experimental design, data collection, data recording, and data analyses. Interns will have the opportunity to disseminate knowledge gained through their project in an Extension or research publication or presentation. An essential component of the internship will be developing leadership and communication skills while building networks within the equine industry through Extension activities. Interns will gain practical hands-on experience operating a 420-acre farm. Management experience will include daily horse care, nutritional management, young horse handling, reproductive management, pasture and forage management, and potential management of other livestock.

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Virginia Tech wins regional soil judging championship

The Virginia Tech Soil Judging Team won first place at the 2015 Southeast Region Collegiate Soil Judging Contest held in Murray, Kentucky, on Oct. 15. The overall team standings were:

  1. Virginia Tech
  2. University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  3. Tennessee Technological University
  4. University of Georgia
  5. West Virginia University
  6. Western Kentucky University
  7. Clemson University
  8. Auburn University
  9. University of Tennessee at Martin
Front row, left to right: Jake McGaughey, Steffany Yamada, Coach John Galbraith, Naina Sharma, and Caitlyn Herron. Back row, left to right: Robert Goodwin, Hunter Wyatt, Janelle Salapich, Jessica Cox, Scott Bauman, Coach Dan Johnson, and Olivia Simpson.

Front row, left to right: Jake McGaughey, Steffany Yamada, Coach John Galbraith, Naina Sharma, and Caitlyn Herron. Back row, left to right: Robert Goodwin, Hunter Wyatt, Janelle Salapich, Jessica Cox, Scott Bauman, Coach Dan Johnson, and Olivia Simpson.

The top 5 teams advance to the National Championship in Manhattan, Kansas, on Apr. 3, 2016. In the individual contest, the following students placed in the top five out of 67 contestants:

  1. University of Georgia – Patty Lawson
  2. Tennessee Technological University – Mandy Millard
  3. University of Tennessee, Knoxville – Kristen Moretz
  4. Virginia Tech – Rob Goodwin
  5. Virginia Tech – Steffany Yamada

Also for Virginia Tech were: No. 10 Hunter Wyatt and No. 13 Caitlyn Herron. Congratulations to these students and all of the 67 participants!

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Wintermester course in animal processing

The Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences is offering a Wintermester course in animal processing. Though the course is being offered to undergraduates, it is open to the public, and has some in-service opportunities.

This course is designed to provide individuals with a hands-on learning experience in animal harvesting, processing, and food safety. It consists of a one week on-line HACCP education in food safety that will result in HACCP certification. The following two weeks will consist of an intensive on-campus learning session in the meat science center. This is an outstanding opportunity to get some useful, applied knowledge in meat processing and if appropriate, three credits toward graduation requirements. If you have any additional questions, or wish to secure space in the class, please contact Jordan Wicks.

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VALOR embraces heritage and opportunity on Virginia’s Northern Neck and Chesapeake Bay

VALOR embraces heritage and opportunity on Virginia's Northern Neck and Chesapeake Bay The Northern Neck of Virginia offers a distinct view of the commonwealth, a region unlike any other with its rural life, “rivah” sauce, national history, and all things seafood. The VALOR program does many things well, but in particular the culture immersion that comes with each regional session is truly the icing on the cake. The Northern Neck region was no exception as the fellows went beyond simple pleasantries and truly dove into intricacies the region had to offer.

The peninsula where the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers meet the Chesapeake Bay is referred to as the Northern Neck. Located in the northeast portion of the state, it is flanked by Virginia, Maryland, and the Chesapeake Bay, and is easily accessible by scenic roads from the mid-atlantic metropolitan areas. The Northern Neck website invites visitors to “experience the road less traveled,” and does an excellent job promoting facets of the region that make it stand out for many, including outdoor adventures, fresh Virginia seafood, agriculture experiences, and historical significance.

The VALOR fellows were able to experience the full range that the Northern Neck has to offer on their most recent regional seminar. The fellows began at Stratford Hall, birthplace of Robert E. Lee, to experience agricultural and personal history of the region. Initial focus of the first few days related to agriculture, both on the land and in the water. Many local farmers and agribusinesses took great care in explaining the role of agriculture in relation to the local and global economy, shared with successes and challenges that the region has to offer. Agriculture in the Northern Neck also includes farming the sea, as evidenced at Bevans Oysters and Cowart Seafood of Lottsburg. Continue reading

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Register today for the CALS Diversity Showcase

CALS Diversity Showcase logo

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Diversity Council is planning a College Diversity Showcase on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 3 – 5 p.m., at Litton-Reaves Hall. As part of this event we invite faculty, staff, and students of the college and Virginia Cooperative Extension to join us as we celebrate the many ways we strive to provide academic and professional environments that support multicultural awareness, acceptance, and inclusion.

We envision the afternoon to be one of sharing ideas and experiences in a casual and safe environment. Examples of work on behalf of diversity to share are: research related to diversity, inclusive pedagogy, community service, diversity training opportunities, etc.

Refreshments will be served and fun, interactive activities will provide opportunities for building community.

Please reach out to any member of our planning committee should you have questions or concerns.

Committee:
Jen Stewart, chair jen2@vt.edu
Jamie Lucero jlucero@vt.edu
Tommy Amal tamal2@vt.edu

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Call for proposals – National Health and Extension Outreach Conference

The National Health Outreach Conference Planning Committee is now accepting proposals for the 2016 National Health Outreach Conference All-Aboard!: Building Partnerships for a Healthy America to be held April 6-8, 2016 in Roanoke, Virginia.

Whos invited: We are soliciting presentations from a wide variety of professionals doing work that fosters health and wellness for individuals, families and communities. Those professionals may include, but are not limited to: university faculty in medical and other academic institutions; public health professionals; local, state and federal agency partners; practitioners in the health care industry; students and Cooperative Extension professionals.

When: April 6-8, 2016

Where: The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center, Roanoke, Virginia

Conference theme: All Aboard!: Building Partnerships for a Healthy America

Conference goal: Build a collaborative approach among organizations and agencies to achieve a healthier and safer America by promoting health and wellness, advancing health equity and reducing health disparities.

Interested individuals may submit proposals for five different types of presentations:

  • Workshop  Sixty-minute interactive capacity-building workshop. Participants learn how to utilize a new approach, program, curriculum, or method.
  • Seminar  Sixty-minute session designed to help participants gain a deeper understanding of a phenomenon, concept, or issue.
  • Research/Evaluation ReportThirty-minute presentation of a scholarly paper that shares results of community assessments, applied research, programmatic interventions, or campus-community partnerships.
  • Poster  Information about a program, project, or resource displayed and hosted by the presenter during a reception.
  • iGNITE Session – 5-7 minute presentations with up to 15 PowerPoint slides. Focus on one program or evaluation. Ten presentations will be grouped together to form one fast-paced session hosted by a moderator.

Proposal Submission Deadlines:

  • Oct. 16, 2015
  • Individuals will be notified of status of proposal no later than Feb. 1, 2016

For more information, visit the National Health Outreach Conference website. You can submit your proposal via a survey web link.

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Emma Flemmig and Rachael Kennedy receive Fullbright student program grants

Congratulations to Emma Flemmig and Rachael Kennedy, two of the recipients of this year’s Fullbright student program grants!

Emma Flemmig of Glidden, Iowa, a Ph.D. candidate in crop and soil environmental sciences, will survey rural households in the Punjab state in India. The surveys are designed to measure dimensions of food security and agricultural productivity. The data collected will offer a comparison with Flemmig’s current research in Haiti. She has a master’s degree from North Carolina State University and a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University.

Rachael Kennedy of Blacksburg, Virginia, a Ph.D. candidate in agricultural, leadership, and community education, will spend a year in Turkey investigating food-oriented social movements. Her research will examine causal factors of social movements in Turkey and the potential for community resiliency. She has a master’s degree from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia.

“For 70 years the Fulbright Program has facilitated the exchange of knowledge and collaboration between countries,” said Guru Ghosh, vice president for Outreach and International Affairs. “We look forward to seeing the contributions their experiences will have on the global community, and the university is fortunate to have them serve as ambassadors.”

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CSES roundup

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CALS Student Club and Organization Night Sept. 16

You are invited to the CALS Student Club and Organization Night for all CALS students and we’d love to see you there!

  • When: Wednesday, Sept. 16
  • Time: 4 – 7 p.m.
  • Where: Ag Quad (behind Price Hall)

Tables will be set up and ready for club displays at 3:30 p.m.

Don’t forget blankets or chairs for seating!

If you have any questions about the event, contact Anna Taylor in the CALS Academic Programs Office at 540-231-5503.

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VALOR summer seminar witnesses rural challenges and daring leadership in southwest Virginia

A family farm, WiFi, a renegade health initiative, and a high school biotechnology lab. For VALOR fellows this July, these are some of strategies that illustrate the creative — sometimes daring — leadership in sustainable economic development in southwestern Virginia.

VALOR fellows trek across rich Wytheville pasture and farmland with dairy farmer describing success in the new wedding tourism market, but the lingering challenge of finding and retaining skilled labor.

VALOR fellows trek across rich Wytheville pasture and farmland with a dairy farmer who described success in the new wedding tourism market, but the lingering challenge of finding and retaining skilled labor remains an issue.

At Carroll County’s Southwest Farmers’ Market, innovative leadership decisions in the shape of a re-purposed shipping container supports small farmers. Five years ago, unable to cool their perishable corn crop, local sweet-corn farmers could not compete in the market. The county stepped in to build a hydrocooler – a $1 million contraption they built out of a shipping container and air-conditioning duct work for a much lower cost, then the county opened it up for a small fee letting farmers quick-cool their crops, lengthening the corn’s shelf life from three days to two weeks and opening the more lucrative, regional market to Carroll County farmers.

“It was like building the space-shuttle, but we did it,” said county administrator Gary Larrowe, leading the VALOR team that day. Everyone laughed, but realized that, to a farmer, adding value opens doors to regional markets – bringing that county investment back home.

“Providing this equipment gives small- and medium-sized farms the chance to grow,” Larrowe said.

The Carroll County visit demonstrated to VALOR fellows how sustainable economic development attempts to strategically integrate all levels of a community’s economic sectors. For example, investment in a biotechnology lab at the county high school is targeted to attract white-collar and high tech investment because their employees will approve of the school system; a furniture manufacturer from North Carolina was wooed to provide trades jobs; and a family-run produce distributor, a county-funded kitchen incubator and the hydrocooler support and stimulate the county’s small-scale agricultural sector.

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