Featured Articles

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    Jun
    30
    Strategic Plan focus groups at 2016 JAM


    June 30, 2016 – The American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) launched its last major Strategic Plan in 2008. The plan has been wildly successful, and now it is time to build upon that in the next Strategic Plan. The only way for a strategic plan to be successful is to have member involvement in its creation and execution, and consequently, we are holding a number of focus groups at the 2016 JAM in Salt Lake City.

    Please fill out this web form if you are willing to participate in focus groups. After you let us know that you are willing to participate, ASAS staff will contact you directly to schedule the best group and time for your participation. Focus groups will only take an hour, but they go a long way toward helping ASAS incorporate membership feedback into our Strategic Plan.

    Please submit your name and your ASAS sectional affiliation. If you are not associated with a section, just list your country of residence.

    Thanks again and we look forward to speaking with you.


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    Jun
    30
    JAM launches Instagram account


    June 30, 2016 – The Joint Annual Meeting (JAM) is increasing its social media presence with the launch of an Instagram account instagram.com/2016jointannualmeeing/, hashtag #2016jam.



    The debut, set for Tuesday, July 19, will coincide with a challenge to those attending the JAM Opening BBQ to post their cutest, silliest pictures using the hashtag #2016jambbq. The Instagrammer whose picture receives the most likes will win a gift bag containing great American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) swag. Voting will end Thursday, July 21 at 6:00 pm. The winner will be announced the following day at the ASAS Business Meeting from 9:30 to 10:30 am.

    Follow the 2016 JAM Instagram account for updates throughout the meeting and to share your pictures.


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    Jun
    30
    TED-style talks announced


    June 30, 2016 – Speakers and topics for the AnimalX TED-Style Talks at the 2016 Joint Annual Meeting have been announced. AnimalX takes place during the Opening Session on Tuesday, July 19. The 3-5 minute presentations replace a keynote speaker. You don’t want to miss this!


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    Jun
    30
    Opening Day BBQ returns to JAM


    June 30, 2016 – After the opening session of the Joint Annual Meeting (JAM) on Tues., July 19, make plans to join us at This is the Place (see right) historic village for the return of the JAM Opening BBQ. With food, entertainment, competition, and fun for all ages, this is not an event to miss!



    In This is the Place, you can take a step back in time to see the West as it was in the early settlement of Utah. In addition to the fascinating historic surroundings to explore, we will have traditional BBQ games that all ages can delight in. As a special treat, you can enjoy our cowboy entertainers singing and performing trick roping, and even have a chance to try some ropin’ of your own! We will also have the Big Scoop ice cream competition along with the Battle of the Brats competition to see who is a true BBQ champ.

    The BBQ will coincide with the launch of the JAM Instagram account instagram.com/2016jointannualmeeing/, hashtag #2016jam and a challenge to those attending the JAM Opening BBQ to post their cutest, silliest pictures using the hashtag #2016jambbq. The Instagrammer whose picture receives the most likes will win a gift bag containing great American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) items. Voting will end Thursday, July 21 at 6:00 pm. The winner will be announced the following day at the ASAS Business Meeting from 9:30 to 10:30 am.


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    Jun
    30
    Animal Science Image Gallery Launch at JAM


    June 30, 2016 – The Animal Science Image Gallery began as a partnership between the Animal Science Education Consortium (fifteen colleges and universities in the northeast and mid-Atlantic states) and the National Agriculture Library (NAL), funded (2003-2007) by a U.S. Department of Agriculture Higher Education Challenge Grant. In 2007, the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) assumed responsibility for oversight of new submissions to the Gallery.

    Now, come join ASAS at the Joint Annual Meeting for the launch of the new and vastly improved Animal Science Image Gallery!



    This new site is designed to provide images for classroom and outreach learning while offering a friendly browsing experience utilizing the latest web design trends. The Polaroid gallery is a fun and creative way to show images. Images can be viewed full-size with a click.


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    Jun
    30
    JAM 2016 going green with electronic posters


    June 30, 2016 – 2016 Joint Annual Meeting poster presentations are going paperless! This year, for the first time ever, all posters will be displayed using electronic screens provided through the company ePosterBoards®. Not only will the technology help reduce paper consumption, but it will also allow presenters to expand their content and create dynamic posters.

    The electronic format enables diversified media usage, such as videos and animations. With electronic posters, presenters are able to expand the content they include in their posters by using multiple slides to display their data. While presenting, they can zoom in on their content to make it more visible and interactive for their audience. Presenters should be sure to bring an electronic copy of their presentation on a flash drive to the event.

    Presenters will be able to advance a poster presentation manually using navigation buttons embedded in the presentation. A mouse device will be provided with each electronic poster so that presenters can advance their presentation at their own pace.

    When viewing a poster, JAM attendees also will be able to zoom in on the content of the poster, as well as manually advance the poster.


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    Jun
    30
    More 2016 JAM events


    June 30, 2016 – Looking for more fun and interesting things to do at the 2016 Joint Annual Meeting (JAM) in Salt Lake City? Check out the special events offered for all ages!


    Student Events

    There are a couple of great ways for students to connect with their animal science peers while at JAM.

    Graduate Student Mixer. Meet new friends and catch up with old ones on Wednesday, July 20 at the Western Section/American Society of Animal Science (WSASAS/ASAS) Graduate Student Mixer, to be held at Twist bar and bistro in downtown Salt Lake City beginning at 8:00 pm.


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  • Shadow
    Jun
    27
    The world of science and agriculture within the 2016 U.S. Presidential Race


    By Casey L. Bradley, ASAS Public Policy Committee Member

    June 27, 2016 – It appears the presidential ballot has been almost 100% finalized going into both the Republican and Democratic conventions, with Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton being the presumptive nominees. However, what is unclear is the candidates’ views on science and agriculture. Unfortunately, this article will not bring much clarity into this subject, as both campaigns ignored our request for comment.

    At the moment, it appears the major differences between the two candidates exist in budgeting, rather than opinions on different scientific issues. Ms. Clinton has advocated for increased funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation. Mr. Trump has never presented an opinion on funding for these agencies, but has suggested that even though he is a proponent of space exploration, he feels that there are larger issues facing the USA that need attention, before advocating for increased funding for NASA.

    There is limited information available on specific scientific and agricultural issues from both candidates, but here are a few viewpoints. From what is available, it appears that both candidates support the use of vaccinations. Mr. Trump, similar to many Republicans, feels that Climate Change is an unimportant and unjustified funding priority, to such an extent that he has suggested cutting the budget for the EPA. He does not feel that humans play a major role in climate change, even though the current consensus (IPCC AR5) indicates that humans are more than half responsible for the increase in global warming. Opposing, Ms. Clinton continues to support the current administration’s policy and viewpoint on climate change. Both candidates seem to support similar views on energy in regard to natural gas and nuclear power. In regard to GMOs there are mixed opinions from both candidates and no clear understanding of their viewpoints, even though Mr. Trump’s humorous Tweet during the primary has led his opponents to suggest he is against GMOs. If we look at evidence-based medicine and biomedical research it appears this area needs more clarity from both candidates, rather than just support of budgets.


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    Jun
    27
    Science communication symposium at JAM


    June 27, 2016 – Attending the 2016 Joint Annual Meeting (2016 JAM) next month in Salt Lake City, Utah? Then make plans to attend “Communicating Animal Sciences Effectively,” a Contemporary and Emerging Issues Symposium, to be held the afternoon of Wed., July 20, during JAM.

    * Public perceptions of animal-sourced genetically modified food products, by Bill Hallman, Rutgers University


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    Jun
    27
    Global Food Security Act of 2016


    By Cassie Welch, ASAS Public Policy Committee Member

    June 27, 2016 – Approximately 795 million people around the world are facing chronic hunger and malnutrition, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. With a world population projected at 9.6 billion by 2050, our societal and scientific grand challenge is to provide sufficient food and nutrition for all. In response to the rapid rise of global food prices, economic challenges and underinvestment in food security in 2007, the U.S. began to offer assistance to developing countries in order to meet humanitarian needs and stimulate agricultural growth. Unfortunately, this was not a short-term problem and more was required to address long-term issues that were contributing to crises and chronic hunger.

    A new initiative was created in 2009 by the Obama Administration, whereby the U.S. made a $3.5 billion dollar pledge to undertake food and nutrition security issues with a different approach. In 2010, this initiative became known as Feed the Future and has since made significant strides to reverse the decades-long decline in agricultural investment. By sharing U.S. agricultural expertise with smallholder farmers and women in developing countries, this program helps people break the cycle of poverty and improve their livelihoods by becoming more independent and prosperous. Additionally, the ability of agricultural sectors to generate opportunities for economic growth and trade builds resilience and sustainability not only for smallholder farmers and their families, but also for the communities and developing countries.

    On March 24, 2016, the Global Food Security Act was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R. 1567) by Reps. Christopher Smith (R-NJ) and Betty McCollum (D-MN) and in the U.S. Senate (S. 1252) by Sens. Robert Casey (D-PA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) on May 7. While there are some differences in the House and Senate bills, both address several important issues associated with global food and nutrition security and are alike in purpose. Currently, Feed the Future has no official statutory authorization and is funded by Congress through annual appropriations legislation, making the future of this program uncertain. The Global Food Security Act would secure authorization for Feed the Future and make it a permanent program, allowing for the continued support of food security priorities and the ability to build capacity for agricultural growth in developing countries. Moreover, this legislation also calls for the administration to facilitate a whole-of-government approach that will coordinate the efforts of 11 departments and agencies to address global food security and malnutrition, leverage unique partnerships with U.S. academic institutions, non-government organizations, faith-based groups and the private sector to obtain additional resources and expertise, and improve upon existing monitoring and evaluation practices to ensure the effective use of U.S. taxpayer dollars.


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    Jun
    27
    An overview of Obama's Fiscal Year 2017 budget


    By Tameka Phillips, ASAS Public Policy Committee

    June 27, 2016 – President Obama’s Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 addresses five major areas, including funding for several initiatives and programs important to research, agriculture, and animal science. Meanwhile, floor consideration of the House and Senate versions of the FY 2017 Agriculture Appropriations Bill could occur before the July/August Congressional recess. Learn more about the House version here. Information about the Senate version can be found here.


    View the President’s Budget for Fiscal Year 2017.


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    Jun
    27
    Carry your message to policymakers


    June 27, 2016 – There are many resources at the ASAS Public Policy website to help you better communicate science to non-scientific audiences. One of the latest resources added to the site is a recording of a web chat that focuses on communicating animal science to policymakers.The web chat includes presentations by Dr. Barb Glenn, CEO, National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA), and Walt Smith, The Mallard Group, LLC. Dr. Glenn begins the web chat by discussing the “grand mission,” which she defines as achieving impact through communicating animal science to policymakers. She goes on to discuss why you, as an animal scientist, should be involved in communicating science in the political arena.

    “Now more than ever, the need for animal scientists to communicate with policymakers in both the agencies and on Capitol Hill is very critical,” Dr. Glenn says.

    Following Dr. Glenn’s introductory comments, Mr. Walt Smith expands on the importance of advocacy with elected officials, and how to effectively carry scientific messages forward.

    “Science has a direct impact on your life and those in your community,” Smith says. “No one understands that like you do…and your elected officials need to understand that importance as well.”


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    Jun
    27
    Join the ASAS Public Policy Committee


    June 27, 2016 – The ASAS Public Policy Committee is looking for volunteers to serve on the committee, starting in July 2016. New positions on the committee are asked to serve a three-year term.

    The committee is dynamic, productive and proactive in communicating with the ASAS membership on policy issues related to animal sciences. The committee identifies opportunities for ASAS and its members to inform, influence and engage in key federal legislative and administrative policy decisions related to animal sciences.

    The committee meets by teleconference on a monthly basis, writes short articles on current events and issues related to animal science for the monthly issue of Taking Stock D.C., organizes quarterly Snack & Fact events and visits on Capitol Hill, and provides stakeholder input on policies and funding related to animal science in response to requests from federal agencies. Additional details on committee responsibilities are listed below.

    If you have an interest in science policy and want to be more active in advancing the mission of ASAS – this is the committee for you. To volunteer to serve on this committee, contact ASAS through Kim Schoonmaker at kims@asas.org by July 8, 2016.


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    Jun
    27
    Meet one of our D.C. interns


    June 27, 2016 – Meet one of our 2016 Science Policy Interns, Alexandra Cantrell, from Texas A&M University. Alexandra shares some of the experiences that helped prepare her for an internship in Washington, D.C. She also shares advice for other college students who are considering applying for the ASAS Science Policy Summer Internship.

    Howdy! My name is Alexandra Cantrell, and I am a current American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) Science Policy Intern for Congressman Mike Conaway, Chairman of the Agriculture Committee within the House of Representatives.

    Coming to work in Washington, D.C. was something I never thought I would accomplish growing up. I was raised on a ranch close to Fort Worth, Texas and working in politics seemed way out of my reach before college. After my first year at Texas A&M, ag policy became an ever-growing interest of mine. Issues in agriculture are a big part of classroom discussions and assignments when you are an animal science major, and learning about the issues that affect our industry is something that I am passionate about. Finding my passion in animal science is what led me to Washington, D.C.

    The best thing that prepared me for this internship was working for the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. I worked for them during the summer of 2014, and I was able to participate in different conventions and meetings that focus on policies that impact the beef industry. Being surrounded by industry leaders and teaching about their vast knowledge on the issues, motivated me to take a more active role in our government which led me to this internship. This past internship provided me with the skill set I needed to take on Capitol Hill, and my advice to future Capitol Hill interns is to seek out those types of internships before coming here. A few of my fellow interns worked in local representative offices within their own districts and it helped them gain the experience they needed. However, any internship or job can help you achieve this goal as long as it pushes work ethic, learning, and motivation.


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    Jun
    23
    JAM 2016 Spouse Events


    June 23, 2016 – Registered for the 2016 Joint Annual Meeting (JAM) in Utah and bringing your spouse? While you attend the meeting, your spouse can visit some of the unique sites around Park City. Register your spouse for one or both of these JAM Spouse Events!

    Spouse Event I: Olympic Park and Park City bus tour – Wednesday, July 20; 9:30 am – 4:30 pm

    Register for the Olympic Park and Park City bus tour to see the diverse localities in the Park City area. The bus will drive through the picturesque Rocky Mountains on the way to Olympic Park, the site of the 2002 Winter Olympic Village. Visit Olympic Stadium, the towering 72-foot-high Olympic Cauldron, and Olympic Winter Park. The Utah Olympic Park is a winter sports park built for the 2002 Winter Olympics and home to 90- and 120-meter Nordic ski jumps and “the fastest bobsled track in the world.”

    Then be transported back in time to the Wild West as you head into Park City. Explore dozens of Old West style saloons and boutiques along Historic Main Street. Enjoy a range of tasty dining choices from Japanese to classic American fare.


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    Jun
    23
    Register for ISAG Gala Dinner


    June 23, 2016 – After you have experienced picturesque scenery, interactive mining history, and designated historic landmarks during the afternoon tours on Tuesday, July 26, join us at This is the Place Heritage Park (see image) for the International Society for Animal Genetics (ISAG) Gala Dinner. With food and entertainment this is not an event to miss!



    In This is the Place, you can take a step back in time to see the West as it was in the early settlement of Utah. There will be a miniature train running during the evening to take you around the village to see all the historic homes, businesses and communities of yesteryear. In addition to the fascinating historic surroundings to explore, you can enjoy our cowboy entertainers singing and performing trick roping, and even have a chance to try some ropin’ of your own!

    Buses will be available from the Hilton to the Gala Dinner beginning at 5:30 pm and will begin returning to the Hilton at 9:30 pm. A bus will run continuously during the event.


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    Jun
    23
    ISAG conference afternoon tours





    June 23, 2016 – Registered for the 35th International Society for Animal Genetics (ISAG) Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah? Join us on one of four unique and exciting afternoon tours to Antelope Island State Park, Historic Downtown Park City, Olympic Park, or Canyons Village Resort. Each of these tours has something special to offer, whether you are seeking breathtaking views and wildlife, unique shopping and dining, sports history, thrills or pampering.

    Antelope Island: Spend the afternoon exploring this beautiful island brimming with wildlife, scenic trails, and picturesque views. The island is actually a peninsula reaching out into the Great Salt Lake. It has multiple freshwater springs to support numerous animal species including bison, pronghorn antelope, mule deer, bighorn sheep, coyotes, badgers, owls, hawks, and falcons. Be sure to visit the Fielding Garr Ranch House, the oldest house in Utah still on its original foundations from 1848. If you are looking to get up close with Utah’s natural environment this is the tour for you!

    Historic Downtown Park City: Head into Park City for a trip to the Wild West. The tour will feature a walk through Historic Main Street, with Old West style saloons and boutiques to explore. If you are looking for art, jewelry, clothing, or souvenirs, this is the place to be! Historic Main Street also offers a range of unique dining choices from around the world from Japanese to Mexican to Italian and the classic American fare. There are a number of places to grab an afternoon coffee, a sweet treat, and even a winery offering wine tastings. This is the tour for the shopper and the foodie alike.


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    Jun
    23
    GLNC, ISAG, and JAM housing deadline ends June 27


    June 23, 2016 – Housing for the Grazing Livestock Nutrition Conference (GLNC), International Society for Animal Genetics (ISAG) Conference, and Joint Annual Meeting (JAM) ends Monday, June 27.

    Please reserve your room soon as space is filling up quickly.

     




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    Jun
    23
    Obituary of Dr. Earl F. Ellington, 82


    June 23, 2016 – Professor Earl F. Ellington, Professor Emeritus of Animal Science at the University of Nebraska, passed away surrounded by his loving family on June 14, 2016. He was 82.

    Dr. Ellington was dedicated to his family, actively involved in the University of Nebraska Animal Science Department, where he retired in 2002. He had many hobbies that included enjoying family activities, farming and gardening, collecting antiques, cheering on the Nebraska Huskers, and traveling both nationally and internationally.

    Dr. Ellington has devoted his professional career to education, first by receiving his B.S. and M.S. from the University of Kentucky, and his Ph.D. from the University of California. After receiving his Ph.D. with an emphasis in Animal Physiology, Dr. Ellington began his career in education by teaching at Oregon State University (1962-1968), and then for over 30 years at the University of Nebraska Department of Animal Science (1968-2002).

    Dr. Ellington served as academic adviser for undergraduates, major professor for M.S. and Ph.D. students, directed postdoctoral programs, served as advisor for student organizations and actively worked with past students for local and national alumni activities. He was highly respected and served as president of the National Agricultural Alumni and Development Association and president of the Nebraska chapter of Gamma Sigma Delta and both president and international president of Phi Beta Delta.


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    Jun
    23
    Western Section elections close June 24


    June 23, 2016 – For the 2016-2017 election cycle, the Western Section must fill positions for:

    The election ballots will close at 11:59 pm CDT on June 24, 2016.



    This year’s candidates are:


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