CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

June 11, 2009

May 27, 2014 admin

Message from the Dean




A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Looking Ahead

Congratulations to our graduates who will be honored at CA&ES Commencement on Saturday, June 13. As the name implies, commencement is a celebration of what lies ahead. Given the cascade of bad news that has showered us for the past year, one might question whether we should be celebrating. Many of us have been through enough “bad” times, however, to know that these times will pass, and that the fundamental purpose of the commencement celebration remains unchanged. Our students have a very bright future ahead of them—regardless of their immediate challenges— because they have made the sacrifices necessary to prepare for their future. I hope our faculty and staff will join the commencement celebration, participate in the ceremony, and wish our students well. They deserve our support and encouragement.

I believe we can all benefit by considering commencement to be a metaphor for our college’s current circumstance: because we have done all we can to prepare for the difficult realities we face, we remain optimistic that the future is bright.

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]





Joan Chandler: Walker Award


Joan Chandler received the 2009 Walker Award for Outstanding Academic Staff Adviser in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at an RMI reception on June 5. Chandler is a staff research assistant and a lecturer, as well as an adviser, in the Division of Textiles and Clothing. This is the second time Chandler has received the Walker Award for exemplary service to students.

The Walker Award was established in 1991 by Harry Walker, an emeritus lecturer and master adviser in the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources. Candidates are nominated by students and selected by peer advisers, faculty advisers, and administrators.

Joan Chandler
(530) 752-4417
[email protected]



Jonathan London: KVIE Appearance


Jonathan London, a professor in the Department of Human and Community Development and director of the UC Davis Center for Regional Change, will appear on a KVIE broadcast called “The Great Valley in a Decade–New Valley.” The show will air Wednesday, June 17 at 7 p.m., and again on Sunday, June 21 at 6 p.m.

Moderated by Great Valley Center president David Hosley, the broadcast will explore issues that face residents of California’s Central Valley, which is one of the fastest growing regions in the country. Other experts appearing on the show will include Linking Education and Economic Development CEO David Butler, as well as Dr. Fred Meyers, UC Davis Center and UC Merced Medical Education and Academic Planning executive director.

For more information about the Center for Regional Change and research on California’s Central Valley and Sierra Nevada regions, visit

Jonathan London
(530) 752-2733
[email protected]



Robert Page Jr.: Germany Academy of Sciences Leopoldina


Honey bee geneticist Robert Page Jr., emeritus professor and former entomology chair, has been elected to the oldest scientific academy of science, the Germany Academy of Sciences Leopoldina. Page received his doctorate in entomology at UC Davis in 1980 and continues his research at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. He was elected to the academy for his pioneering research in behavioral genetics of honey bees.

Founded in 1652, the Germany Academy of Sciences Leopoldina is the world’s oldest academy for medicine and natural sciences. Its members have included scientists Charles Darwin, Marie Curie and Albert Einstein, explorer Alexander von Humboldt, and author Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Of the 1,300 members of the academy, three-fourths are from Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. The remainder are from 30 other countries and include 79 Americans.

Robert Page
(530) 752-0492
[email protected]





First International Symposium on Soft Materials

Professor Ning Pan, a member of the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering as well as the Division of Textiles and Clothing, organized the First International Symposium on Soft Materials held in May in Shanghai, China, at Donghua University. The symposium was jointly sponsored by the UC Davis University Outreach and International Programs and the Modern Textile Research Institute at the Donghua University.

Soft materials, or soft matter—a term coined by the late Nobel Prize laureate Professor Pierre-Gilles de Gennes—deal with a wide range of materials between the conventional rigid solid and simple fluids, and they exhibit various anomalous physical behaviors not accounted for by classic condensed matter physics. The symposium on soft materials included international scientists from physics, biology and biophysics, engineering, food science, and fibrous materials science. The participants tentatively agreed to hold a second symposium on the UC Davis campus in coming years.

For additional information, visit

Ning Pan
(530) 752-6232
[email protected]



Running for Charity


A UC Davis team of faculty, staff, and family members from the departments of Plant Sciences and Food Science and Technology participated in the13th annual Susan G. Komen Sacramento Race for the Cure, held in May. The running team, named the “U.C. Davis Food Chain,” raised nearly $2,000 to support the fight against breast cancer. The team plans to participate again in next year’s race, and welcomes new recruits.

Beth Mitcham
Plant Sciences
(530) 752-7512
[email protected]



Exhibit: 25 Stories from the Central Valley

“25 Stories from the Central Valley,” will be on display through August 23 at the Nelson Gallery in the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center. This campus-community project uses photos, theater, stories, and sound to paint a vivid picture of the environmental problems faced by Central Valley communities, as told by women leading the movement to solve them. The exhibit is based on the master’s thesis of UC Davis alumna Tracy Perkins. For more information, visit

Sharon Ruth
John Muir Institute of the Environment
(530) 752-9178
[email protected]



Call for Nominations: Farm Health and Safety

The Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety is accepting nominations for the WCAHS Outstanding Achievement in Farm Health and Safety Award, which honors an individual, group, organization, or business/industry that consistently strives to reduce agricultural workplace injuries and improve overall health in the agricultural workplace. Nominations for the 2nd annual award are due July 15, 2009. Last year, the $1,000 award (funded by the Western Growers Association) was presented to the Sacramento Country Farm Bureau, with an honorable mention to Silverado Farming Company in Napa.

For more information or to submit a nomination, visit

Sandra Freeland
Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety
(530) 752-4050
[email protected]



Arboretum Events

For more information, visit the arboretum website:

  • “Folk Music Jam Session”
    Fridays, June 12 and June 26, 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.
  • “The White Flower Garden in June”
    Saturday, June 13, 11 a.m., Gazebo.
    Enjoy a daytime tour of the Carolee Shields White Flower Garden. White flower gardens are popular in hot climates, since they can be enjoyed in the cool of the evening, and white flowers and silvery foliage look cool in the summer heat.
  • “Ecology of the Redwoods”
    Saturday, June 27, 10 a.m., Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center.
    This walk will provide a brief introduction to the ecology and history of the coast redwood and the most common animals and plants found in the redwood forest.




CA&ES Commencement: June 13, 2009

CA&ES Spring Commencement will be held Saturday, June 13 at 9 a.m. and at 2 p.m. in the Pavilion at the Activities and Recreation Center. College and department staff will serve as volunteers at the event. The CA&ES majors included in the 9 a.m. ceremony are community and regional development, human development, international agricultural development, and managerial economics. All other CA&ES majors will participate in the afternoon ceremony.

Faculty members participating in the ceremony should report with their cap and gown to the Special Events Room on the main floor of the Pavilion at least 30 minutes before the event begins. Faculty will be directed by staff to their line-up.

For more information, visit the commencement site at

Barbara Ambler-Thomas
Dean’s Office
(530) 754-0322
[email protected]



Postharvest Technology Short Course: June 15–26, 2009

The 31st annual Postharvest Technology Short Course will be held June 15–26. The course is an intensive two-week study of current technologies and best practices associated with the postharvest handling of fresh fruits, nuts, vegetables, and ornamentals in California. It is designed for produce industry, government, or academic professionals interested in current advances in the postharvest technology of horticultural crops. The first week of the short course will meet on campus. The optional second week is a field tour that takes participants to visit a variety of postharvest handling operations throughout California.

Attendees may register for this and other upcoming educational activities sponsored by the Postharvest Technology Research & Information Center via their website at

Pam Devine
Postharvest Technology Research & Information Center
(530) 754-4326
[email protected]



Annual Horse Auction: June 20, 2009


A public auction of young horses bred, raised, and trained by more than a dozen animal science students will be held on Saturday, June 20 at 6 p.m. in the horse barn arena on La Rue Road. Called the “Proof Is in the Progeny,” the annual horse production sale will feature four weanlings, eight yearlings, and two adult horses. The event will be preceded by a 2 p.m. preview of the horses and a 4:30 p.m. barbecue dinner.

The sale is the culmination of a six-month internship for the students serving as foal managers. During the internship, students learn how to handle and train weanlings and yearlings, as well as provide care for the mares and foals before and after birth. Proceeds from the auction, which traditionally raises $20,000 to $30,000, will support the animal science department's Equine Management Program. This program provides hands-on experience for students preparing for careers in the horse industry or for further studies in veterinary medicine or graduate school.

Detailed descriptions of the horses and the Equine Management Program are available online at

Joel Viloria
Animal Science
(530) 754-4156
[email protected]



Locavore Feast: June 20, 2009

The Good Life Garden's first annual Locavore Feast will highlight the importance of eating tasty, healthy, environmentally-friendly local food. It will be held in the Good Life Garden at the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at 6 p.m. The feast will be prepared by a well-known local chef who will use as many ingredients as possible from the greater Sacramento region. Tickets are $125.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Kira O'Donnell
Good Life Garden
(530) 681-6412
[email protected] 


Olive Oil Conference: June 21–23, 2009

CA&ES faculty and staff are invited to join cooking enthusiasts, olive oil aficionados, and food professionals from around the world June 21–23 at UC Davis for an international conference exploring the best production practices, sensory qualities, and culinary possibilities for the highest quality extra virgin olive oil.

“Beyond Extra Virgin: Discovering the World of Super-premium Olive Oil” will convene in Freeborn Hall at 4 p.m. on June 21. The first two days of the event will spotlight UC Davis facilities, and the third day will be held at the Culinary Institute of America’s Napa Valley campus. Transportation to Napa is included in the registration fee, which is $250 for CA&ES faculty and staff, a 50 percent discount from the regular $495 registration fee.

For information about CA&ES faculty/staff registration, please contact Libby Clow, [email protected], at 754-9301. For additional information about the conference agenda and standard registration, visit

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



Poetry in the Garden: June 25, 2009

The UC Davis Arboretum invites fans of good writing and beautiful gardens to enjoy a free reading by two California poets and translators at 7 p.m. on the Wyatt Deck on Thursday, June 25. John Oliver Simon and William O’Daly will read their poems in English and Spanish. William O’Daly has published eight translations of the great Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, as well as a book of his own poems, “The Whale in the Web.” John Oliver Simon has been exploring Latin America and translating its poetry for two decades. The event is sponsored by the arboretum, Rebecca Morrison, and Poets and Writers, Inc.

For more information, please call (530) 752-4880 or visit

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



Grapevine Canopy Management Symposium: July 16, 2009


An industry-focused symposium on the proper training and care of a grapevine's shoots, leaves, and grape bunches will meet July 16, 2009 in Freeborn Hall from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The International Grapevine Canopy Management Symposium will feature scientists from France, Italy, Germany, Australia, Canada, and the United States. They will present recent research findings and advances in canopy management practices in their respective countries. The symposium is planned as a tribute to UC Davis viticulture professor emeritus Mark Kliewer, who organized the first international canopy management symposium at UC Davis in 1986.

For more information and online registration, visit

James Wolpert
Viticulture and Enology
(530) 754-6245
[email protected] 



International Plant Nutrition Colloquium: August 26–30, 2009

The 16th annual International Plant Nutrition Colloquium will meet in Sacramento from Wednesday, August 26 through Sunday, August 30. “Plant Nutrition for Sustainable Development and Global Health,” hosted by the Department of Plant Sciences and CA&ES, will highlight advances in fundamental and applied plant nutrition, and emphasize the role of plant nutrition in food systems and environmental sustainability. For more information, visit

Patrick Brown
Plant Sciences
(530) 752-0929
[email protected] 



Fresh-Cut Workshop: September 22–24, 2009

The UC Davis Postharvest Technology Research and Information Center is accepting registration for the 14th annual “Focus on Fresh-Cut!” workshop, to be held at the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center on September 22–24, 2009.

The rapidly expanding food category of fresh-cut products (cleaned, washed, cut, packaged, and refrigerated fruits and vegetables) requires that produce be handled and packaged to maintain freshness, ensure safety, extend shelf life, and provide good eating quality. This workshop is designed for individuals from the fresh and processed fruit and vegetable industries, and will be of interest to food scientists, food engineers, quality assurance personnel, and new product development staff. The course is also valuable to representatives from research institutions, the restaurant and institutional food industries, and packaging and ingredient suppliers.

Enrollment is requested by September 4, 2009. For registration and more information, visit

Marita Cantwell
Plant Sciences
(530) 752-7305
[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, Elisabeth Kauffman, Neal Van Alfen
Editorial review: Ann Filmer, Thomas Kaiser

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