National briefs - ADSA honors graduate students

Wisconsin State Farmer


American Dairy Science Association® Foundation to honor graduate students

Work done by graduate students, from assisting in the laboratory to authoring manuscripts, is invaluable to scientific research. For many students, an extensive literature review is part of the thesis or dissertation required to graduate. These reviews offer in-depth summaries of the literature and could be a great benefit to other researchers. Often, though, these reviews are not widely available.

“Many reviews never get published as journal articles and go unnoticed,” Michael T. Socha, PhD, chair of the American Dairy Science Association® Foundation, said. “This led to the idea of an annual contest for graduate student review papers, where the ADSA Foundation could acknowledge excellent work and help publicize literature reviews that might otherwise go unseen.”

The ADSA Foundation Graduate Student Literature Review Awards will annually recognize the work of four graduate students—two doctoral candidates and two master’s candidates—in two categories, dairy foods and dairy production. Within six months of successful thesis defense, graduate students should submit literature reviews to the Journal of Dairy Science®. These reviews will undergo standard, blinded peer review and be published as Invited Reviews, with page charges waived. All reviews that are accepted via the regular peer review process will be published in the journal, not just the award-winning reviews.

Reviews accepted within the previous two years will be considered for the award. The ADSA Foundation expects to present the first Graduate Student Literature Review Awards in 2019, meaning all literature reviews accepted between January 2017 and January 2019 would be eligible for awards. From the submitted reviews, a panel of judges will select the best and the winners will receive a plaque and a $1,000 cash prize.

The inclusion of more high-quality review papers will be a benefit to the Journal of Dairy Science, as reviews positively affect the journal’s Impact Factor. Publication will benefit the graduate students, as it allows them to add to their number of publications and increase their name recognition.

“These awards advance the mission of the ADSA Foundation and further promote the high-quality work done by graduate students worldwide,” said Socha. “We look forward to recognizing our graduate students with these awards.”


University of Idaho to host Western Regional Dairy Challenge

More than 50 students from colleges and universities across the Western United States and Canada attended the 2017 Western Regional Dairy Challenge, February 23-25, in Twin Falls, Idaho. The three-day event was a hands-on educational opportunity to prepare students for careers in the dairy industry. 

The Western Regional Dairy Challenge was designed to create an educational environment and facilitate a real-world dairy evaluation. To accomplish this, students are placed on mixed-university teams. Dairy Challenge strives to incorporate a higher-learning atmosphere with practical application to help prepare students for a variety of careers in the dairy industry.

Students arrived on Thursday evening, February 23, and participated in event orientation and team-building activities. On Friday, students traveled to the host farm to conduct an evaluation of the operation. The four-person teams of students then developed a comprehensive evaluation of their host farm including recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. On Saturday, team members presented their plan of recommendations to a panel of judges. Participant knowledge is tested as they fielded questions from judges. Presentations are evaluated based on student analysis and recommendations. The evening concluded with a reception and awards banquet.

NAIDC is an innovative event for students in dairy programs at North American post-secondary institutions. Its mission is to develop tomorrow’s dairy leaders and enhance progress of the dairy industry by providing education, communication and networking among students, producers, and agribusiness and university personnel. Over its 15-year national history, Dairy Challenge has helped prepare more than 5,000 students for careers as farm owners and managers, consultants, researchers, veterinarians or other dairy professionals. The next national event will be March 30-April 1, 2017 in Visalia, CA. Four regional events are held in late fall and winter; details are at


Conference to address advances in water and food security from local to global scales

Registration is open for the 2017 Water for Food Global Conference organized by the Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute at the University of Nebraska. The conference, held April 10-12 at Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA, will examine the work being done to ensure water for food security from local to global scales. A $100 discount is available for registrations or before March 10.  Conference website:

The three-day event will bring together experts from around the world to explore "Water for Food Security: From Local Lessons to Global Impacts," a theme inspired by the notion that global breakthroughs come from local action.

Speakers from academia, nonprofit organizations, government agencies and private industry will share best practices and advances in science, technology and policy that are helping to achieve greater food security with less pressure on scarce water resources.

In addition to the rich variety of programming, the conference includes special networking events, including two evening receptions; a student poster competition; photography competition and exhibit and a Nebraska bar-be-que banquet.

Topics include:

  • Creating and expanding farmer-led irrigation solutions in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Developing market-based approaches to drought management
  • Enhancing high productivity irrigated agriculture, highlighting challenges and opportunities from the Great Plains to sub-Saharan Africa
  • Improving water management and governance for food security in great river basins of the world
  • Transforming water policy to develop sustainable and equitable water management practices in local, regional, and global contexts 
  • A View from the Field – how farmers from different parts of the world are using technology and best practices to increase yields
  • Engaging students, stakeholders and future leaders through science literacy and citizen science to examine the relationships between water, food and energy, as well as agriculture and public health.

Early registration runs through March 10 at $450. Regular registration runs March 11 to April 1 at $550.
Special registration discounts are available to all academic faculty, staff and students. The 2017 Water for Food Global Conference is a North American Regional Event for the 8th World Water Forum, the world's largest water-related forum organized by the World Water Council.

Generous support for the 2017 conference is provided by the Robert. B. Daugherty Foundation, the University of Nebraska, Monsanto Co., Senninger Irrigation Inc., the Nebraska Corn Board and LI-COR Biosciences. Those interested in sponsorship opportunities may contact Molly Nance at or 402-472-5512.


Syngenta offers Minecto® Pro insecticide for specialty and vegetable crops
Syngenta announced that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has registered and approved Minecto® Pro insecticide for use in specialty and vegetable crops to control lepidopteran pests as well as sucking/rasping/chewing pests like mites, whiteflies, psyllids, thrips and Colorado potato beetles.

“Minecto Pro is a new foliar insecticide that answers the industry's request for a broad spectrum solution with long-lasting residual control in specialty and vegetable crops,” said Meade McDonald, insecticide product lead, Syngenta.

Minecto Pro combines cyantraniliprole, a second generation diamide that provides a broader spectrum of control, and abamectin, the global standard for mite control, into one convenient premix formulation.

“Its complementary modes of action broaden the activity spectrum compared to other stand-alone products,” said Elijah Meck, technical product lead, Syngenta. “In many markets, newer products typically target a narrow pest spectrum. However, Minecto Pro has been specifically formulated to deliver robust rates of both active ingredients that will provide superior control of a broad range of lepidopteran and sucking insect pests.”

Minecto Pro will be commercially available for the 2017 growing season upon receipt of individual state registrations.

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