CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

February 20, 2004

Jun 03, 2014 admin


MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN
A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Progress Toward Meeting Budget Cuts

WHO
UC is 2003 Top University in Winning Patents

IN THE NEWS
Fructose Corn Syrup Fingered as Obesity Crisis Culprit
Hydrogen-Fueled Cars Won’t Cruise Highways Anytime Soon
California Farms: Fewer but Larger

WHAT
RFP: Exotic/Invasive Pests and Disease Research
Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research

WHAT
College Curriculum Town Hall Meeting, Feb. 25
ANR Listening Session, Feb. 26
“New Directions on the Water Front,” March 11-12
Lower Colorado River Tour, March 24-26
Natural Resource Coordinating Conference, April 28-30
Arboretum Events

A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Progress Toward Meeting Budget Cuts
Budget uncertainty is becoming an issue once again as we plan for our next fiscal year. Over the past two years, our college experienced sizable decreases in our Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension budgets, e.g. 20 percent and 25 percent, respectively. As we think ahead to how we will absorb additional cuts, it is important to recognize that we have successfully weathered these massive cuts without large numbers of layoffs and closure of programs. We have continued planning for the future, have made some high-priority hires, and are positioning ourselves to emerge from this crisis still recognized as the world’s preeminent college of our type. Two things have made it possible for us to weather the storm thus far: financial help from the provost and the willingness of our senior faculty to allow the college to buy out most of their AES appointments using I&R FTE. About 65 of our faculty members agreed to these temporary appointment adjustments. We are asking departments to follow-up on this exercise by readjusting all faculty appointments within the department to ratios that reflect department average and/or specific faculty workload issues. Since some departments were affected more than others, we soon will be adjusting AES FTEs across departments to reflect relative AES activities. Using this approach, we have been able to absorb most of our AES budget cuts without major disruption. We appreciate the goodwill of our faculty in working with my office and participating in the buy-out plan. Since it is a faculty member’s right to not agree to an appointment change, it is remarkable that only five of our eligible faculty (those Step VI or higher) chose not to participate. With this type of faculty participation, we were able to reduce our annual AES budget by $3,179,039. If all eligible faculty members had participated, we would have trimmed an additional $231,455 from our annual budget. These funds, of course, must now be cut from something else. I really appreciate the support we have received from the faculty in meeting our budget crisis. As always, we welcome your feedback. If you have questions or comments, please e-mail me.

Neal K. Van Alfen
Dean
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
[email protected]

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UC is 2003 Top University in Winning Patents
According to a report announced this week by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the University of California system's nine campuses combined to generate 439 patents for invention in 2003, leading the nation for the 10th consecutive year. CalTech took second place with 139, and MIT third place with 127. As a UC Office of the President news release stated, “Whether it is a new variety of strawberry or new computer speech-recognition software, UC moves quickly to advance innovation and discovery from the laboratory to the market place and into our homes.”

UC News Press Release
Chronicle of Higher Education


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Fructose Corn Syrup Fingered as Obesity Crisis Culprit
In an article over the debate of the role that fructose corn syrup, found in everything from sodas to processed foods, may play in the nation’s obesity crisis, the San Francisco Chronicle used as a primary source, Peter Havel, associate researcher in the Department of Nutrition. A diet high in fructose could lead to weight gain because fructose does not trigger signals reducing appetite says Havel. "Because fructose in isolation doesn't activate the hormones that regulate body weight as do other types of carbohydrate composed of glucose, consuming a diet high in fructose could lead to taking in more calories and, over time, to weight gain," he says.

San Francisco Chronicle


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Hydrogen-Fueled Cars Won’t Cruise Highways Anytime Soon
According to a San Francisco Chronicle article, a National Academy of Sciences panel concluded last week that a transportation system based on hydrogen fuel cells is anything but a sure bet. The Chronicle quoted panel member Daniel Sperling, professor in the Department of Environmental Science and Policy and director of the Institute of Transportation Studies at UC Davis, as saying that changing to fuel cells “…is a tremendously important, transforming opportunity we are talking about, but it's not going to happen with current technology and current knowledge."

San Francisco Chronicle


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California Farms: Fewer but Larger
The Stockton Record reported that the number of farms in California and throughout the nation continue to dwindle and those that remain are getting larger, according to agricultural census figures recently released by the USDA. On the average, farmers are getting older with more than half describing farming as their primary occupation, based on census data collected in 2002. Farmers also are increasingly diverse, with more identifying themselves as African American or American Indian than in 1997. According to the Stockton Record, Steven Blank, a Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics did not find those results surprising. "All of those trends are continuations of trends, some of which are decades old," he said.

In a related Associated Press story Daniel Sumner, director of the Agricultural Issues Center and professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, was quoted as saying, "Farms are getting larger to add value, so they can stay profitable and wage-competitive…As the industry has become more technologically and managerially intensive, you need people who know finance, marketing and human resources…."

The Stockton Record
Associated Press


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RFP: Exotic/Invasive Pests and Disease Research
The UC Statewide IPM Program and the UC Riverside Center for Invasive Species Research are issuing their Request for Proposals for the Exotic/Invasive Pests and Diseases Research Program, 2004-2007.

Deadline for submission: 5:00 p.m. on April 15, 2004.

For details of RFP and Budget Form, visit http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/EXOTIC/cisrrfp.html

The USDA/CSREES forms required for this RFP can be found under the heading "CSREES Application Forms" at http://www.reeusda.gov/1700/funding/ourfund.htm

Donna Connolly
UC Statewide IPM Project
(530) 752-5336

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Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research
The search is on for candidates for the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research. As in the past, one award goes to a faculty member who has effectively supported undergraduate research projects; the other award goes to a senior who has conducted outstanding research in any academic subject while at UC Davis. New additions this year are four honorable mention awards. Deadline for submission of nominees is May 5.

Annie King
Associate Dean
Undergraduate Academic Programs
[email protected]
(530) 752-7150

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College Curriculum Town Hall Meeting, Feb. 25
The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences will hold a Curriculum Town Hall Meeting on Feb. 25, 3–5 p.m., in the East Conference Room, MU. Dean Neal Van Alfen encourages all faculty members and Cooperative Extension personnel to participate. Over the past year, several committees -- Environmental Biology, Plant Sciences and Sustainable Agriculture -- have studied and made recommendations with regard to updating the college’s curriculum in these areas. The meeting will focus on the recommendations of these three committees related to development of new courses and curricula and on curriculum changes offered by the Division of Biological Sciences that may affect CA&ES programs.


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ANR Listening Session, Feb. 26
The UC’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) is sponsoring a series of listening sessions to solicit stakeholders’ input on ANR, its programs and ways in which it can better address the needs of Californians. The final listening session is set for Feb. 26 on the Davis campus at the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center. Each session is limited to 100 people.


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“New Directions on the Water Front,” March 11-12
The Water Education Foundation's 21st annual executive briefing will be held March 11-12, 2004, at the Radisson Hotel in Sacramento. Top policymakers and leading agricultural, environmental and urban water stakeholders will discuss key issues related to the new state administration and 2004 water policy.

Details and registration, click here.


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Lower Colorado River Tour, March 24-26
The Water Education Foundation is presenting a tour of the lower Colorado River from Hoover Dam to the Salton Sea and the Coachella Valley, March 24-26, 2004. The three-state tour, which begins at the Clarion Hotel in Las Vegas and ends at the Ontario International Airport, is co-sponsored by the James Irvine Foundation, the San Francisco Foundation and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation Lower Colorado Region.



Details and registration, click here.


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Natural Resource Coordinating Conference, April 28-30
The annual Division of Agricultural and Natural Resources Coordinating Conference will be held at the Red Lion Inn, Redding, Calif., on April 28-30. The conference theme is "Water Resources and the Hydrological Cycle in California: ANR's Research and Extension Program Opportunities." Leading ANR scientists will provide an overview of current research and policy issues. Pre-and post-conference field tours will highlight water issues in the Northern Sacramento Valley. Deadline for registration is March 26; travel request deadline is March 19.

Details and registration, click here.


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Arboretum Events
Feb. 21, 11:00 a.m., Guided Tour: Shall We See if Spring Has Come?
Meet at the Buehler Alumni and Visitor Center

Feb. 22, 2:00 p.m., Guided Tour: Spring's Around the Corner
Meet at the Arboretum Gazebo

Feb. 28, 11:00 a.m., Guided Tour: Gold and Silver Plants in the Landscape
Meet at the Arboretum Terrace Garden

Feb. 29, 2:00 p.m., Guided Tour: Preparing for Spring
Meet at the Arboretum Terrace Garden

March 3, 11:00 a.m., Guided Tour: English Gardening in a Mediterranean Climate
Meet at the Arboretum Gazebo

For More Information:
UC Davis Arboretum
(530) 752-4880

http://arboretum.ucdavis.edu/calendar.htm




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Visit CA&ES Currents online at http://caes.ucdavis.edu/NewsEvents/currents.

CA&ES Currents, the faculty/staff newsletter of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UC Davis, is distributed every other Friday. News deadline is noon Monday preceding Friday publication. Send inquiries to Ann Filmer, [email protected].

Issue Editor:
Susan Kancir
(530) 752-5597
[email protected]

Contributors: Donna Gutierrez, Thomas Kaiser, Susan Kancir, Rhoda McKnight, Neal Van Alfen, John Weston.

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