CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

March 13, 2008

May 27, 2014 admin

Message from the Dean






A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Budget Challenges

Our campus does not yet know how much of a budget reduction we will face next year, but we know enough now to begin planning for specific cuts that must be considered best-case scenarios, based on projections of the state budget. In planning for next year’s budget, Interim Provost Horwitz has requested that our college submit a plan to her by April 25, 2008, to detail how we will reduce our permanent I&R and AES budgets by a total of about $1.7 million.

I will ask the CA&ES Dean’s Council to serve as the primary group to advise me on how we should take these cuts. This council contains representatives from my office, department chairs, the College Executive Committee, and the CE Specialists Advisory Committee. The recommendations of this group will be taken to the Executive Committee and department chairs for comment. My office, the department chairs, and department managers will then meet to consider these recommendations. The college will also establish a website that will give faculty members and staff the opportunity to comment on our budget reduction planning.

I recognize that a budget reduction of this size will impact all of us, so I feel it is important that our college community be engaged in the planning process. We have absorbed larger cuts to our budget in the recent past, so I have confidence that we will be able to work our way through this challenge while maintaining the excellence of our programs, just as we did a few years ago.

As always, I value your feedback. If you have questions or comments, please e-mail me.

Neal K. Van Alfen
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

[email protected]

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Diane Ullman: Chancellor’s Achievement Award for Diversity and Community


Diane Ullman, CA&ES associate dean for undergraduate academic programs, received the 2008 Chancellor’s Achievement Award for Diversity and Community. A professor of entomology, Ullman won the faculty award for her work in recruiting and retaining students, developing innovative programs, and fusing art with science.

Ullman serves on the steering committee of the Arboretum GATEways (Gardens, Art and the Environment) Project Initiative, which encompasses the UC Davis Art-Science Fusion Program, an outreach program that Ullman co-founded and co-directs. She also stewards the Career Discovery Group, which mentors first-year CA&ES students. Her role in creating the Art-Science Fusion Program and the Career Discovery Group Program sparked the nomination.

The Career Discovery Group Program offers first-year students an opportunity to explore careers, learn strategies for selecting a major, and gain lifelong skills in successful career development. The Art-Science Fusion Program includes design faculty, science faculty, museum educators, professional artists, and students. Out of the interdisciplinary approach sprang “Nature’s Gallery,” student work depicting plants and insects on ceramic tiles. Nature’s Gallery, on display by special invitation last summer at the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C., drew more than 300,000 visitors. The interlocking-mosaic mural will ultimately be installed in the UC Davis Arboretum’s Ruth Storer Garden.

Diane Ullman
(530) 752-7150
[email protected]

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Zhongli Pan: Early Career Award


The USDA Agricultural Research Service has awarded Zhongli Pan the Herbert L. Rothbart Outstanding Early Career Research Scientist Award. Pan, an adjunct professor in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering and a research engineer at the USDA ARS Western Regional Research Center, won the top prize among exceptional "early career" scientists who have been with the research service for seven years or less.

Pan was honored for developing numerous energy-efficient processing methods that improve the value and healthfulness of a variety of commodities. These include developing new infrared heating technologies as alternatives to freeze-drying fruits and vegetables, as well as a nonchemical way to disinfest rice and pasteurize almonds.

Pan was recognized in February at the ARS Annual Recognition Program in Washington, D.C.
He has also been nominated for the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers.

Zhongli Pan
(530) 752-4367

[email protected]

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Moran Wang: Oppenheimer Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship

Postdoctoral fellow Moran Wang has been awarded the J. Robert Oppenheimer Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship by the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Named after the first director of Los Alamos, the award is offered to one or two people each year who “display extraordinary ability in scientific research and show clear and definite promise of becoming outstanding leaders in the research they pursue.”

Wang is a member of the research group of Professor Ning Pan, who has appointments in both the Division of Textiles and Clothing and the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering. Wang received his Ph.D. in engineering thermophysics from Tsinghua University in China. He works on computational modeling of multi-physical behaviors of complex materials systems. In less than two years, Wang has published more than ten scientific research papers focusing on transports and properties of various porous media, composites, functional gradient materials, and multiphase material systems.

Moran Wang
(530) 752-8984

[email protected]

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Departmental Citations for Outstanding Seniors

All departments and major programs are encouraged to submit names of graduating seniors to receive citations for outstanding work. Two types of citations are available:

  • Departmental Citations are for students with the highest academic record in the major or program.
  • Citations for Outstanding Performance are for students who have demonstrated exceptional performance (not necessarily academic).


The deadline for submission of names is April 21, 2008. While departments may choose recipients based on their own criteria, the Committee on Undergraduate Scholarships, Honors and Prizes suggests the following guidelines:

  • The citations should be reserved for students of true distinction; in any given year the department or major program may choose to honor one student, more than one, or no student.
  • The citations should be given for excellence in the department or major program, and students should maintain a grade point average of 3.6 in courses given by the department or major program. Work outside the major may also be a factor in selecting the recipients. Activity relating to the work of the major or department, such as writing, experimentation, or creative work in the field, should be considered.
  • Most recipients are majors in the department, but need not be if a substantial amount of work has been done with distinction in the department. 

"Report of Departmental Citation" forms are available at Send only the name of the recipient(s) who will graduate in the 2007–2008 academic year to the Committee on Undergraduate Scholarships, Honors and Prizes, c/o Scholarship Office. Please indicate on the "Report of Departmental Citation" form which type of citation is to be issued to each student and the exact name of the department and major.

Typically, citations are presented near the close of the spring quarter and may be given in any manner deemed suitable by the department. If your department is having an award ceremony, please indicate the date on the form. For more information, contact the Scholarship Office at 752-2804.


Silas Hung
Animal Science
(530) 752-3580
[email protected]

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Call for Nominations: CA&ES Executive Committee

Academic Senate and Academic Federation representation is needed on the CA&ES Executive Committee. There are two Division of Agricultural Sciences vacancies, and one Division of Environmental Sciences vacancy. Elected members serve a three-year term. At least two nominations are needed for each vacancy.

Nominations are being accepted until March 28, 2008. Ballots will be mailed to Academic Senate and Academic Federation members on April 11, 2008.

Sharon Berg
CA&ES Dean’s Office
(530) 752-3483
[email protected]

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Call for Applications: Research Grants

The Committee on Research is now accepting applications from members of the Academic Senate for grants to promote:

  • new research initiatives
  • interdisciplinary research


The funding distribution for these two programs will depend on the number of outstanding applications received in each category. The level of funding requested can fall between $10,000 and $30,000 with appropriate budget justification, to be spent over a 15–month time period.

Applications must be submitted electronically before midnight on Friday, April 11, 2008. Only one application of any grant can be submitted. If more than one application is submitted, the first submitted version will be the one reviewed.

Visit for the application form and details.

Kimberly Pulliam
Academic Senate Office
(530) 752-4918
[email protected] 

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Call for Applications: Small Grants in Aid of Research

The Committee on Research is now accepting applications from Academic Senate members for the Small Grant in Aid of Research. The committee anticipates there will be funding for approximately 160 awards, a substantial increase from previous years for this program. Funds can be expended over the two fiscal years 2008–2009 and 2009–2010. In no cases will unexpended funds be carried over after June 30, 2010.

Applications must be submitted before midnight on Friday, April 11, 2008. Visit for the online form. Each application must include a 500-word summary of the research activities being conducted by the applicant. Applications must include a list of other support for research, not including current Academic Senate small grants.

In allocating awards, assistant professors will have first priority. Eligible professors whose applications from last year were not funded will have second priority. Third priority will go to associate and full professors who are making normal progress in the merit cycle, with more junior faculty receiving the higher priority.

Kimberly Pulliam
Academic Senate Office
(530) 752-4918
[email protected]

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Call for Nominations: James H. Meyer Distinguished Achievement Award

Nominations are being accepted for the 36th annual James H. Meyer Distinguished Achievement Award. The campus community can nominate members of the Academic Federation who merit recognition for career-long contributions to the mission of the university and a commitment to the campus community.

This award will be presented in the fall and carries a stipend of $1,000. The deadline for nominations is Thursday, May 15, 2008, at 5 p.m. Submit nominations electronically to [email protected].

For more information, visit

Nancy Kilpatrick
Academic Senate Office
(530) 752-2220
[email protected]

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Retirement Readiness

In support of the Retirement Readiness Program, the UC Davis benefits office is offering several workshops presented by the campus representative from FITSCo (Fidelity Investments Tax-Exempt Services Company). The workshops are designed for all employees and will be offered at various times and dates in March. All sessions are in the Memorial Union, Garrison Room. Topics include:

  • Enrolling in Your UC Retirement Savings Program
  • Finding the Right Investment Strategy
  • NetBenefits
  • Achieving a Sound Retirement

If you wish to attend the workshops in a series, FITSCo recommends following the order listed above. Reservations are required for all workshops. The FITSCo Reservation Line is available Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. Pacific Standard Time at (800) 642-7131.

Bill Brooks
Benefits Office
(530) 754-5875
[email protected]

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Climate Change Seminars in Sacramento

A lunchtime seminar series on climate change for non-specialists is meeting twice monthly in Sacramento. The coordinated series of talks began in January and covers aspects of climate change science relevant to state policy formation. The seminars are aimed at state agency representatives, legislative staffers, and other policy professionals. The lectures will be held in the Cal/EPA Building at 1001 I St. every other Thursday at noon.

The lecture series is presented by the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources, the John Muir Institute of the Environment, the Air Quality Research Center, and the UC Institute for Research on Climate Change and its Societal Impacts. Time will be allotted for discussion after each talk. Although the topics will be presented in a logical sequence, each lecture is independent. Missing some presentations will not detract from understanding others.

Reservations are not required. Sandwiches and drinks will be provided at a nominal cost.

Dates and topics for future seminars are as follows:

March 27: TBD

April 10: Climate Change Impacts on Air Quality

April 24: Climate Change Impacts on Agriculture

May 8: Factors Causing Climate Change in California

May 22: We said WHAT? Assembly Bill 32

June 5: Short-Term Climate Change Mitigation Strategies for California

June 19: Long-Term (2050) Climate Change Mitigation Strategies for California

Prof. Terry Nathan
(530) 752-1609
[email protected]

Dr. Philip Duffy
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
[email protected]

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WCAHS Monthly Seminar Series

The Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety will host monthly seminars on topics related to agricultural health. The presentations will be held from 4 to 5 p.m. in 3201 Hart Hall. Refreshments will be provided.

Dates and topics for future seminars are as follows:

  • April 7, 2008: Immunoassay Methods for Pesticide Exposure Monitoring
  • May 5, 2008: Agricultural Ergonomics Research at UC Davis: Past, Present and Future

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Arboretum Events

For more information, visit the arboretum website:

“Folk Music Jam Session”; Friday, March 21, noon to 1 p.m., Wyatt Deck.

The arboretum's folk music jams are held outside on the Wyatt Deck next to the redwood grove. Campus and community folk musicians are invited to play together informally during this acoustic jam session. Bring your fiddles, guitars, mandolins, penny whistles, pipes, flutes, and squeezeboxes, and join fellow musicians for bluegrass, old-time, blues, Celtic, klezmer, and world music. Listeners and musicians of all skill levels welcome.

“Living Under the Redwoods”; Saturday, March 22, 11 a.m., Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center.

Learn about the redwood forest ecosystem during a free public tour of the redwood grove. Docent Lois Crowe will discuss the factors that shape today's distribution of coast redwoods, and point out the plants of the understory.

“Spring in the Native Plant Garden”; Saturday, March 29, 11 a.m., Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center.

Standouts in the spring native plant garden, many of which will be in bloom, will be the focus of a Saturday tour. Docent Dean Wheeler will discuss redbuds, dogwoods, California wild lilacs, and other native plants, both in their native habitat and in the garden.

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Alumni Career Advancement Conference: March 18, 2008

A one-day, all-alumni career advancement conference, organized by the nine alumni associations of the University of California, will be held Tuesday, March 19, 2008, at the Parc 55 Hotel in San Francisco. The conference is aimed primarily at helping alumni and others advance their careers and make successful job changes within or beyond their current field. The events are designed to help professionals from a broad range of disciplines with three or more years of work experience.

The conferences are being co-produced by seasonedPRO, For pricing and registration, visit

James Stofan
(510) 987-9184
[email protected]

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Olive Oil Launch Party: March 19, 2008


Come to the Silo Café & Pub on Wednesday, March 19 from 4 to 6 p.m. to celebrate the launch of the 2008 edition of UC Davis Olive Oil, as well as the second release of UC Davis Wine Vinegar. The event will offer the only discounted olive oil pricing of the year.

Campus olive trees yielded a bumper crop last fall, and those olives have now been pressed and bottled in three blends: Wolfskill, The Silo, and Gunrock. The new wine vinegar appears under the name "Dinny" in honor of the late Professor A. Dinsmoor "Dinny" Webb. As an active member of the Department of Viticulture and Enology from 1941 to 1982, Webb made vinegar for his colleagues.

The launch party will highlight other university-related products, including summer sausage from the UC Davis Meat Lab, cheese from our own campus cows, gerber daisies from Environmental Horticulture, and local items as well.

Admission to the event is free; wine tasting will cost $8 per person and beer tasting will cost $4 (tickets available at the door). Non-media individuals planning to attend are asked to RSVP at [email protected].

Dan Flynn
Olive Center Director
(530) 754-9301
[email protected]

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Botanical Art Workshop: March 29–30, 2008

Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum invite aspiring artists to a botanical art workshop with Catherine Watters on Saturday and Sunday, March 29–30, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Participants will learn techniques of botanical drawing and painting in watercolor from Watters, an art instructor at Filoli in Woodside.

The fee for the workshop is $170 ($150 for members of Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum and UC Davis students), plus a $10 materials fee. To register for the class, visit the arboretum website at Click on “event registration” and download the form. For information by phone, please call (530) 752-4880. Space is limited, so register early. The location will be sent with registration confirmation.

Diane Cary
(530) 752-7822
[email protected]

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Soaring to New Heights: April 8, 2008

Staff and faculty are invited to attend the 18th annual Soaring to New Heights program, a campus diversity celebration event, which will be held in Freeborn Hall on Tuesday, April 8, from 11:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. This year's event features entertainment by UC Davis faculty blues band Black Cat Bone, as well as an international buffet. The program also features informational table displays by campus constituent groups.

Recipients of the annual Diversity and Principles of Community Achievement Recognition Awards and the Calvin E. Handy Leadership Award will be announced at the event.

Tickets will be sold through the Campus Events and Visitor Services Ticket Office on a first-come, first-served basis until sold out. No tickets will be sold at the door. The cost for each ticket is $5. Cash, checks payable to UC Regents, and personal credit cards will be accepted. Phone orders will incur a $5 charge for the entire order. Please note that departmental recharges cannot be processed by the ticket office.

For complete information about the upcoming Soaring to New Heights program, please visit

Rahim Reed
Office of Campus Community Relations
(530) 752-2071
[email protected]

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Water Resources Coordinating Conference: April 17, 2008

The University of California Center for Water Resources is sponsoring the third Water Resources Coordinating Conference from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 17, 2008, at the Heidrick Ag History Center in Woodland. This year, the conference will focus on the unique research programs and water centers throughout the UC system. April 14, 2008, is the registration deadline for the free conference. Please visit for more information.

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Rose Day: April 25, 2008

The California Center for Urban Horticulture, in partnership with Foundation Plant Services, will host the CA&ES Rose Day on Friday, April 25, 2008. Join fellow rose enthusiasts in discussions of rose production, hybridization, marketing, and pest/disease issues with national and international industry leaders. The $150 conference registration fee includes a Flower Carpet ® Scarlet ground cover rose, campus parking, admission to the event, and a catered lunch.

The morning event will take place in the Mondavi Center’s Studio Theatre. After lunch, there will be a tour of eight acres of roses at Foundation Plant Services, west of the campus. In the afternoon, All-America Rose Selection winners and other roses will be available for sale on Foundation Plant Services grounds to the general public and conference attendees. Proceeds will benefit the programs of the California Center for Urban Horticulture at UC Davis.

Please register by Wednesday, April 16, 2008, at:

Missy Borel
California Center for Urban Horticulture
(530) 752-6642
[email protected]

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Global Climate Change Conference: May 30–31, 2008

The California Center for Urban Horticulture will host the CA&ES Global Climate Change and Your Backyard Conference on Friday and Saturday, May 30–31, 2008.

Conference highlights include a panel discussion moderated by Ira Flatow, NPR’s science correspondent and host of Talk of the Nation. The keynote address will be given by Katy Moss Warner, president emeritus of the American Horticultural Society. Conference topics will investigate the impacts of global climate change and its relationship to horticulture and the urban forest.

The $150 general admission conference registration fee includes admission to the event, parking, and lunch on both Friday and Saturday. Admission for UC Davis Arboretum members and master gardeners is $125.

Please register by Monday, May 19, 2008, at the following link:

Missy Borel
California Center for Urban Horticulture
(530) 752-6642
[email protected]

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Visit CA&ES Currents online at

CA&ES Currents, the faculty/staff newsletter of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of California, Davis, is published the second Thursday of each month.

News deadline is noon Monday preceding Thursday publication. Send news items to editor, [email protected].

Editor: Robin DeRieux

Writing: Robin DeRieux, Neal Van Alfen

Editorial review: Ann Filmer, Thomas Kaiser

To be added to or deleted from this electronic newsletter list, please send an e-mail to: [email protected].

The University of California does not discriminate in any of its policies, procedures, or practices.

The university is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.

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