August 17, 2018

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Lineberry Foundation awards 4-H

The Lineberry Foundation awarded a $25,000 grant to support multiple New Mexico 4-H activities, including horse and livestock schools, transportation to 4-H events in the Albuquerque area and translating 4-H curricula into Spanish.

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New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute (NM WRRI)

On August 13, the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute (NM WRRI) hosted the NMSU Water Networking Event at Corbett Center. Forty faculty involved in water-related research met to discuss their current research and learn about their colleagues’ research efforts. Deans Flores and Reddi, Associate Dean Murphy, and Vice President for Research Cifuentes made introductory remarks that emphasized the importance of cooperative, interdisciplinary water research across NMSU colleges. There was animated engaged conversation around the tables at the event, with many ideas for future collaborative water research. Follow-up meetings are being planned for the near future.

Image of New Mexico 4-H, National 4-H Council and Wal-Mart Foundation

New Mexico 4-H, National 4-H Council and Wal-Mart Foundation

This week marked the wrap up of a grant partnership between New Mexico 4-H, National 4-H Council and Wal-Mart Foundation that allowed for training of over 100 teen leaders to provide comprehensive healthy living programming to 2700 youth around the state. Eight counties received mini-grants to grow programming in their communities. An additional 4000 youth were involved in short term educational experiences related to nutrition and physical fitness. Partnerships were developed and strengthened with schools, after-school programs and community organizations, through youth lead projects designed to meet the greatest need in their area. One agent stated, “I think every kid was touched in some way. I interact with the Health Ambassadors (teens) frequently so I saw the greatest change in them. The Health Ambassadors transformed into health advocates. Each of them now serving in a leadership role and wanting to make a positive difference in their communities.”

Agricultural Science Center at Tucumcari

The College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences held its 2018 Annual Field Day at NMSU's Agricultural Science Center at Tucumcari was a great success with very pleasant weather and 100 in attendance. Both the Chancellor and President made pre-dinner comments connecting very well with the attendees. In fact, the audience interrupted the Chancellor with an applause when he stated that one of NMSU's goals is to prepare New Mexico's youth to return home where they can find a meaningful career, indicating that student success and economic development within the state are both important. Most of the attendees also went on the hayride tour to hear about some of the ongoing research and other topics of interest. Presentations included a salt cedar beetle update, the new Quay County Beginning Farmer Land Access and Mentorship Program, weed management, opportune cropping, a detailed description of the nuclear chemistry of how soil moisture is estimated using a neutron probe, and summer annual forage legumes.

2018 Field Day

Sustainable Agriculture Science Center in Alcalde

Over 190 farmers, ranchers, gardeners, and agricultural enthusiasts from across New Mexico attended the 2018 Field Day at the Sustainable Agriculture Science Center in Alcalde on Friday, August 10. After Dean Flores' welcome speech, attendees ventured into the field to learn about the center's ongoing research including trials pertaining to fruit production, beneficial insects, acequias, corn and tepary beans, bio-reactor composting, high tunnel construction and intercropping, tractor maintenance, bind weed mites, and more. In between tours and the locally catered lunch, participants were encouraged to visit various agricultural organization exhibits including a live hive from New Mexico Beekeepers Association, an Amish made hops picker from the Farmington Science Center, and a sampling table of heritage grains from the Los Luceros Heritage grain trials. When asked about her experience at field day, one participant exuberantly commented, "[There is an] incredible wealth of research going on! So wonderful to learn about!"

National Association County Agricultural Agents (NACAA)

The NACAA Annual Meeting and Professional Improvement Conference was held in Chattanooga from July 29 through August 3. Not only did the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences have multiple attendees who had the opportunity for continuing professional development in extension education, but we had multiple award winners and recognitions of the extension education efforts on a state, region, and national level from the state of New Mexico.

Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management

Daren Bloomquist in the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management organized and facilitated a webinar on energy and sustainability trends with a focus on the WELL Building standard as part of his duties as Director of Webinar Development for the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) Hospitality Council Board. Daren brought together Hrisa Gatzoulis, Senior Project Manager, Jones Lang LaSalle, Energy and Sustainable Services Division and Jacklyn Whitaker, Senior Vice President of Market Solutions, International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) to present the webinar. The over 20 webinar participants from around the nation representing lodging, casinos, restaurants, institutional foodservice, consultants and education learned how to decrease the negative external environmental impacts from business operations while at the same time improving the internal building environment to positively affect the health and well-being of employees, visitors and guests through WELL Building certification.

Plant & Environmental Sciences

Dr. Manoj Shukla, Professor from the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences, visited China Agriculture University (CAU) from June 19 to July 8. Trip was sponsored by CAU. He served as one of the five international expert to assess Agricultural Engineering program of CAU. He gave several talk, discussed research with graduate students, and taught a course on "Soil Water and Salinity Management" in Shiyanghe Experimental Station of CAU. Rod McSherry, Paul Tian, Manoj Shukla also met with Vice-President Internal Office of CAU. Dr. Shukla was invited to Northwest A & F University (NWAFU) during July 25-August 9. He taught a course on "Soil and Water Resources" to undergraduate student. Dr. Shukla interacted with several faulty members and deans, and discussed opportunities for joint research and student exchange at both CAU and NWAFU. A plan for organizing a graduate student seminar at CAU and a visit of undergraduate students from NWAFU to Las Cruces was developed.

Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Business

Frank A. Ward presented at the International Commission and Drainage Conference held in Saskatoon, Canada, for the week of August 12-17. His talk at an UN-FAO event held on Wednesday August 14 addressed methods to overcome barriers between researchers who conduct water policy analysis for handling climate stressed water supply shortages and communication to policymakers. His talk described an interface on water economics and policy for the Rio Grande Basin, currently posted at Cybershare. The web-posting gives NMSU's southwest regional water stakeholders an opportunity to simulate all major water sources, sinks, uses, and losses as well as economic values of water and institutional constraints governing water supply and use for the Middle Rio Grande downstream of Elephant Butte. FAO is investigating development of similar analytical capabilities to support their overseas farm and food development work in Africa, Europe, Asia, and Latin America.