Recent CALS Spotlights

  • The University of Arizona’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences students have revived the Agriculture Future of America’s (AFA) chapter for the 2014 academic year. This organization is dedicated to helping students reach their full leadership capabilities by creating “partnerships that identify, encourage and support outstanding college men and women preparing for careers in the agriculture and food industry.”

    Since 1997, AFA has provided scholarships and leader training to collegiate students pursuing careers in agriculture. AFA’s anchor personal and professional development event is AFA Leaders Conference.

  • Lifelong Arizona 4-H supporter Dan A. Klingenberg is one of 14 honorees inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame for their lifetime achievements and contributions to 4-H, the nation’s largest youth development organization that serves over six million youth nationwide. He was honored during a special ceremony on Friday, Oct. 10, at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Md.

    National 4-H Hall of Fame laureates are nominated by their home states, National 4-H Council, the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents, or 4-H National Headquarters of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) - USDA based upon their exceptional leadership at the local, state, national and international levels.

  • It's not every day that NASA scientists ask kids to design and launch rockets that could deliver food to inhabitants on a storm-ravaged, isolated Pacific island.

    On Oct. 8, thousands of young students across the country took up that challenge as part of 4-H's 2014 National Youth Science Day. The event is held annually to encourage student involvement in STEM-related fields. Each year, 4-H'ers nationwide participate in the same science experiment.

    "4-H is more than cows and cooking," said Kirk Astroth, director of Arizona 4-H Youth Development. "Everything we do is about science. We try to keep up with the changing needs and interests of kids – we teach app development, photography, GPS and rocketry."

  • On Friday, September 19, 2014, over 1,000 Santa Cruz County school-aged children and teachers gathered to celebrate the United Healthcare and Arizona 4-H Kick-Off event at the Santa Cruz County Fair. The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension’s Arizona 4-H Youth Development Program and United Healthcare are partnering to educate youth about healthy living habits.

    The 4-H Healthy Living Ambassador Program is active in Cochise, Pima, and Santa Cruz counties and is led by 4-H agents Darcy Tessman, Elizabeth Sparks, and Amanda Zamudio. The National 4-H Council and United Healthcare are sponsoring the project through a $40,000 grant for the 2014-2015 year.

  • The UA's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has named Paul Brierley the inaugural director of its recently launched Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture.

    The center, based in Yuma, is a public-private partnership between the college and the Arizona and California desert agriculture industry, dedicated to addressing "on-the-ground" industry needs through collaboration and research.

    Brierley, who was identified after a national search, will oversee the center's research activities. He joins the UA after more than a decade of executive service to the Arizona Farm Bureau, where, as the bureau's director of organization, he helped agricultural producers improve their industry by actively identifying and solving problems.

  • The Arizona Board of Regents approved the University of Arizona’s request today to establish a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine degree within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences. The program, which will cut the cost of educating Arizona veterinary students by half and provide a faster pathway to entering the workforce. The veterinary medical and surgical program plans to enroll its first students in less than one year.

    The UA program will be founded on three critical pillars underpinning not only the veterinary profession but all of global society as it involves animals: commerce, human-animal interdependence and “One Health”—an approach to treating the health of humans, animals and the environment as interrelated. Not only will the program train DVMs, it will also allow students who do not become DVMs—but who are interested in a successful career in the very large and diverse areas of our economy associated with animals—to get a master’s degree in areas related to the three pillars.

  • It is with great sadness that we share the news of the passing of a very special alumna of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Judy Mellor. Julia “Judy” Mellor passed away on September 11, 2014, in Tucson, at the age of 70.

    Judy graduated from the University of Arizona in 1965 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Home Economics Education. For over 45 years, she served the students, faculty and programs of CALS. She actively recruited students to the College and encouraged more and younger alumni to support CALS and the University. Her involvement in the Annual Homecoming “Dean’s Almost World Famous Burrito Breakfast and Alumni Auction” was integral to its success year after year.

    Judy was known throughout the College for her kind heart, volunteerism, and pride in her University.

  • The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Department of Entomology will be hosting the Arizona Insect Festival again for its 4th year on campus! The festival will take place on Sunday, September 21 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the University of Arizona. There will be more than 20 booths in the Student Union Grand Ballroom, with theme-based, interactive activities and exhibits about the importance of insects in our lives, and exciting University of Arizona research.

    The festival will highlight research conducted by UA scientists from a wide range of academic departments including Entomology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and Neurobiology. This event has attracted thousands of Tucson residents, students, and children in the past, so the attendees are expected to increase this year. Don't miss out on this fun and free event!  

  • Solving global challenges in food security, emerging diseases and biodiversity loss requires evolutionary thinking, argues a new study published online in Science Express that was co-authored by Bruce Tabashnik of the University of Arizona College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

    For the first time, an international team of nine scientists has reviewed progress in addressing a broad set of challenges in agriculture, medicine and environmental management using approaches that consider evolutionary histories and the likelihood of rapid adaptation to human activities.

  • As University of Arizona students partake in recreational sports at Bear Down Field, it's unlikely they realize what lies just beneath their feet. Under the north edge of the field lies a million-gallon tank designed to mitigate storm flows and harvest stormwater.

    When monsoon clouds roll into town and unleash a downpour on the city, water is filtered into the tank, where it collects and, through a series of pipes, is directed outside of Likins residence hall, draining into the landscaping.

    This tank is one of numerous water harvesting features integrated throughout the UA campus.