CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

February 17, 2011

May 20, 2014 admin

Message from the Dean







A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Budget Uncertainties

State and university budget issues are dominating the news again in ways that bring uncertainty to us all. We know that there will be budget cuts, but we do not yet know the extent of the reductions that each unit must absorb, or what these cuts may mean to us individually. The next few months will be difficult because we will not have the information our employees need to plan either at a programmatic or personal level. Uncertainty can result in personal stress, so I feel it is important that information be shared as soon as we receive it with everyone in our college community. My office will make sure that our planning and budgeting process continues to be transparent.

Over the past three years, our college has engaged in a planning process with the goal of identifying ways that we can reduce the scope of work and increase administrative efficiency in order to maintain the excellence of our college in key areas. Entering this new period of budget uncertainty will not require us to start planning again. We have developed a plan through a consultative process that will guide additional budget decisions.

The goal of our planning has always been to use our budget strategically to assure continued excellence in the future. We will continue to plan for excellence rather than just how to absorb budget cuts. As we plan, much of our effort will be directed toward identifying new funding sources to support the activities of our faculty.

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] 



Dan Sehnert: National Meat Competition Judge


Dan Sehnert, animal facilities coordinator for the Department of Animal Science, has been selected to judge the American Cured Meat Championships, to be held in June in Reno, Nevada. The championship is held in conjunction with the American Convention of Meat Processors, and is the only national cured meat competition for meat plant operators. Sehnert will be asked to help evaluate cured meat products and choose winners from multiple categories ranging from bacon and jerky to smoked turkey and cooked summer sausage.

Dan Sehnert
(530) 752-1256
[email protected] 


UC Davis Interdisciplinary Graduate and Professional Symposium

Faculty are asked to encourage exceptional graduate and professional students in any discipline to apply to the Interdisciplinary Graduate and Professional Student Symposium by the newly extended deadline, February 23 at 5 p.m.

The Interdisciplinary Graduate and Professional Symposium will be held April 21–23 on campus.  Formerly the Interdisciplinary Graduate Symposium, the event has expanded from one day to three in order to showcase student research and creative work. There will be performances, panels, and art displays, in addition to traditional papers and posters.

More than $10,000 will be given away to graduate and professional students who can best convey the importance of their research or work at UC Davis. There will be a $5,000 prize for Best Ten Minute Talk, and $1,000 top prizes for Best Performance/Art Display, Best Graduate Student Session, and Best Poster.

Faculty who are interested in judging the event should contact Terri Harris, symposium coordinator. For more information, visit (It will take a few days for the website to reflect the recent deadline change, but the application procedure remains the same.)

Terri Harris
Graduate Student Assembly
(530) 752-0650
[email protected]    


CA&ES Executive Committee Election

Nominations for Academic Senate and Academic Federation faculty to serve on the CA&ES Executive Committee must be received by March 28, 2011.

  • Academic Senate: There are three Academic Senate vacancies, two representing the Division of Agricultural Sciences, and one representing the Division of Environmental Sciences. Continuing members of the Academic Senate are Trish Berger, Susan Handy, Kevin Rice, Judith Stern, and Jeffrey Williams.
  • Academic Federation: There is one Academic Federation vacancy, representing the Division of Agricultural Sciences. Continuing members of the Academic Federation are Karen Klonsky, Dan Putnam, and Ken Tate.  

At least TWO nominations are needed for each vacancy. Faculty may nominate themselves, but all nomination forms require five supporting faculty signatures. Elected members serve a three-year term.

For nomination forms, contact Sharon Berg in the CA&ES Dean’s Office or your department chair.

Nominations and election schedule

  • February 28: Pendency of election notice sent electronically to faculty
  • March 28: Last date nominations will be received
  • April 11: Ballots mailed to Academic Senate and Academic Federation members
  • April 29: Last date ballots will be received
  • May 6 or 9: Ballots will be counted by Rules and Jurisdiction Committee

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

California WaterBlog


The UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences has started a new blog, California WaterBlog (, which will inform readers on critical water issues in California.

Posts will come from a group of authors including Professor Peter Moyle, Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology, Professor Jeff Mount, Department of Geology, Professor Jay Lund, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Professor Richard Howitt, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, and William Bennett, Bodega Marine Laboratory researcher.

The first posting, written by Moyle and Bennett, tackles the thorny issue of striped bass control—whether the cure is worse than the disease. The second posting, by Moyle, discusses reconciliation ecology and the resiliency of restored natural areas.

The Center for Watershed Sciences—a unit of the John Muir Institute of the Environment—is dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of critical issues in watershed science, with a focus on the sustainable and cost-effective restoration and management of stream, lake, and estuarine ecosystems.

Trina Wood
Center for Watershed Sciences
(530) 754-7250
[email protected]

The Consilience of Art and Science Exhibit

The Pence Gallery hosts an exhibit by local and regional artists that features works linking the worlds of art and science. It opened January 14 and will continue through February 27. The show was juried by entomology professor Diane Ullman, who serves as CA&ES associate dean for Undergraduate Academic Programs, and by design professor James Housefield.

The Pence Gallery is located at 212 D St. in downtown Davis.

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

Animal Science Winter Seminar Series

The Department of Animal Science hosts a series of noon seminars that meet on Mondays in Meyer Hall, Weir Room 2154 from 12:10 to 1 p.m. through March 14. Dates and topics for remaining seminars include:

  • February 14 — Sue Stover, Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Cell Biology, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, TBA
  • February 28 — Saumya Wickramasinghe, Department of Animal Science, Transcriptional Profiling of Genes in Bovine Milk Oligosaccharide Metabolism
  • March 7 — Carolyn Slupsky, Department of Food Science and Technology, TBA
  • March 14 — Karrigan Bork, Department of Animal Science, California Fish and Game Code 5937: Water for Fish

Elizabeth Maga
Department of Animal Science
(530) 752-5930
[email protected] 

Entomology Winter Seminar Series

The Department of Entomology hosts a series of noon seminars that meet every Wednesday through March 9 from 12:10 p.m. to 1 p.m. in 1022 Life Sciences Addition, corner of Hutchison and Kleiber Hall Drive. This is a change from last quarter's location of 122 Briggs Hall

Dates and topics for remaining seminars include:

  • February 16: Pheromone Production in Bark Beetles
  • February 23: Evolutionary Functional Genomics: How Can We Find the Natural Genetic Variants Affecting Interesting Traits in Model Insects?
  • March 2: Asexual Endophytes in Native Grasses: Tiny Partners with Big Community Effects
  • March 9: TBA

Kathy Keatley Garvey
Department of Entomology
(530) 754-6894
[email protected] 


Arboretum Events

For more information, visit the arboretum website:

  • Folk Music Jam Session
    Friday, February 18, 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.    
  • Acacia Grove in Bloom
    Saturday, February 26, 2 p.m., Arboretum Headquarters.
    Acacias are popular with gardeners for their masses of brilliant yellow flowers and honey-like fragrance. Enjoy a free tour of the Eric E. Conn Acacia Grove, which displays over 50 species of acacias from Australia, Africa, and the Americas.



Water Policy Forum: February 24, 2011

Water experts, including several UC Davis faculty members, will gather to discuss water policy reform at “Managing California’s Water: From Conflict to Reconciliation,”   a half-day event in Sacramento on Thursday, February 24, sponsored by the nonprofit Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). The forum will be held from 9 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Sheraton Grand Hotel, Magnolia Room. There is no charge to attend, but space is limited. Pre-registration is requested by February 18.

The forum coincides with the release of the newest PPIC report on water policy of the same title, “Managing California’s Water: From Conflict to Reconciliation.” Participants include faculty from the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences who co-authored the report: Professor Jay Lund, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Professor Richard Howitt, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Professor Peter Moyle, Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology, and Professor Jeffrey Mount, Department of Geology, along with Ellen Hanak, an economist for the PPIC.

For more information or to RSVP, please visit

Kelly Holt
Public Policy Institute of California
(415) 291-4498
[email protected] 

Bohart Museum Weekend Opening: February 26, 2011


Meet the Beetles is the theme for a weekend opening at the Bohart Museum of Entomology, 1124 Academic Surge, on Saturday, February 26, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Special weekend hours to accommodate families who are unable to tour the museum during its regular Monday through Thursday operating hours will also be offered on:

  • March 13, 1 to 4 p.m.
  • April 16, UC Davis Picnic Day, all day
  • May 7, 1 to 4 p.m.
  • June 5, 1 to 4 p.m.

For more information, visit

Kathy Keatley Garvey
Department of Entomology
(530) 754-6894
[email protected]

Microbial Safety of Fresh Produce Workshop: March 1–3, 2011

“Advanced Topics in Microbial Safety of Fresh Produce,” a course for food safety professionals, will be offered March 1–3 at UC Davis and again April 27–29 at the Gulf Research and Education Center, University of Florida.

Course director Trevor Suslow leads this workshop sponsored by the USDA Specialty Crops Research Initiative. Participants will develop a greater skill level in translation of research-based technical information to practical risk-reduction system design.

For more information, visit

Penny Stockdale
Postharvest Technology
(530) 752-7672
[email protected] 

Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Field Day: March 4–5, 2011


CA&ES will hold its annual Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Field Day on Friday and Saturday, March 4–5. The field day is open to FFA and 4-H high school students from California and surrounding states. Approximately 3,000 high school students come to Davis to compete in various agriculturally based judging contests, ranging from livestock judging to agricultural computer applications.

UC Davis students from a variety of majors coordinate the contests. CA&ES faculty and staff volunteer as advisors. No experience is required to serve as a contest judge.

To volunteer to be a judge, contact 2011 Field Day coordinator Kathryn Salfen.
Kathryn Salfen
Field Day coordinator
(530) 754-9083
[email protected] 

Cheese Loves Beer III: March 5, 2011


Registration is open for the third annual presentation of “Cheese Loves Beer: Mastering the Marriage,” to be held Saturday, March 5, from 1 to 5:30 p.m. in the Silverado Vineyards Sensory Theater at the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science. The afternoon will be a rousing discussion on the compatibility of beer and cheese led by Charlie Bamforth and Moshe Rosenburg, professors in the Department of Food Science and Technology.

Tickets are $55 for the public and $45 for Friends of the RMI, UC Davis staff, students, and faculty.

Kim Bannister
Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science
(530) 752-5171
[email protected]

California Small Farm Conference: March 6–8, 2011

“Small Farms: Bright Futures” is the theme for the California Small Farm Conference to be held March 6–8 in San Jose, California. The three-day educational conference includes day-long short courses and on-farm tours, workshops, keynote addresses, and networking opportunities.

The conference registration fee of $150 covers participation in any of the 25 workshops and the plenary sessions. Meals, the tasting reception, and the field courses are extra.

For more information, visit

Shermain Hardesty
Small Farm Center
(530) 752-0467
[email protected] 

Conservation Cropping Conferences March 9–11, 2011

California’s Conservation Tillage and Cropping Systems Workgroup will present educational tours and programs at three locations in California on March 9–11 to convey information on innovative conservation tillage crop production systems that are being developed in irrigated regions of South Dakota, Nebraska, Colorado, and Washington. 

In addition to sharing information about the conservation cropping systems in these states, the speakers will discuss how the principles and practices can be implemented on California farms.

The first conference will be held March 9 at UC Davis. The second meeting convenes on March 10 at the SCE Ag-TAC facility in Tulare and continues in the afternoon with tours of three Central Valley farms. The final session is March 11 at the UC West Side Research and Extension Center in Five Points. The presentations at the three locations will be the same. There is no registration fee.

Conservation agriculture systems reduce overall tillage or soil disturbance, maintain surface residues, seek to make production systems more efficient, and reduce costs. For more information, visit the Conservation Tillage and Cropping Systems Workgroup website at

Jeff Mitchell
Department of Plant Sciences
(559) 646-6565
[email protected] 

Members-only Arboretum Plant Sale: March 12, 2011


The arboretum will host the first plant sale of 2011 on Saturday, March 12, open to members of the Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum only. The sale will offer hundreds of varieties of uncommon garden plants that perform well in Central Valley gardens. It will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Arboretum Teaching Nursery on Garrod Drive, across from the School of Veterinary Medicine.

On the day of the sale, visitors can join the Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum at the door ($15/student, $40/individual, $60/family or household for a one-year membership) and receive a 10 percent discount and a free plant.

For map, directions, and plant list, visit  

Margaret Kralovec
UC Davis Arboretum
(530) 752-1404   
[email protected] 

Symposium on Wild Relatives of Fruit and Nut Crops: March 19–23, 2011

The first international Symposium on Wild Relatives of Subtropical and Temperate Fruit and Nut Crops will be held March 19–23 at UC Davis. The symposium is organized by the International Society of Horticultural Sciences and hosted by the USDA-ARS National Clonal Germplasm Repository at UC Davis, in cooperation with the Department of Plant Sciences.

The conference will bring together stakeholders from around the world to address the current status and future course of action for conservation, management, and sustainable utilization of wild relatives of subtropical and temperate fruit and nut crops. For details, see

Malli Aradhya
USDA Agricultural Research Service
(530) 752-9392
[email protected]

Dan Kluepfel
USDA Agricultural Research Service
(530) 752-1137
[email protected] 

Sustainable Backyard Workshop: April 9, 2011


Join the California Center for Urban Horticulture for a hands-on workshop for gardeners on Saturday, April 9, called “Your Sustainable Backyard: Landscaping in California.” The $35 registration fee includes morning coffee and lunch.  A plant sale hosted by the UC Davis Arboretum at the Arboretum Teaching Nursery from 3 to 5 p.m. will immediately follow the workshop.

Speakers include Debra Lee Baldwin, a photojournalist and author of “Designing with Succulents,” and Bob Perry, a landscape architect and author of “Landscape Plants for California Gardens.”

For registration and more information, visit

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

Fruit Ripening Workshop: April 26–27, 2011

The Postharvest Technology Research and Information Center will host the 17th annual Fruit Ripening and Ethylene Management Workshop from April 26–27 at the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center. The workshop is intended for shippers, handlers (wholesale and retail), and produce managers involved in handling ripening fruits and fruit-vegetables. The workshop focuses on how to increase profits by delivering ready-to-eat, delicious fruits and vegetables to the consumer.

Registration is $700 and includes classroom instruction, lab activities, course materials, morning and afternoon coffee breaks, and lunches. Enrollment is requested by April 13. For more information, visit:

Penny Stockdale
Postharvest Technology
(530) 752-7672
[email protected] 

* *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

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

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The university is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.

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