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College of Agricultural & Life Sciences

Physical Address:
E. J. Iddings Agricultural Science Laboratory, Room 52
606 S Rayburn St

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive MS 2331
Moscow, ID 83844-2331

Phone: 208-885-6681

Fax: 208-885-6654



Catching Up with CALS — April 3, 2019

Dean's Message — Vandals Give Today

Today is the final day of Vandal Giving Day, and I’m in.

Like other deans on campus, I’ve pledged $3,000 to the CALS Dean’s Excellence Fund that will be ‘unlocked’ after the first 50 gifts have been made to any of the CALS Excellence Funds.

It is exactly what it appears. I’m investing my money for my own enjoyment. I plan to pay for trips to exciting locations near and far to learn lots and have fun doing it.

And I won’t even be the one traveling. CALS students will benefit from the funds in the Dean’s Excellence Fund — by traveling to conferences, pursuing study abroad opportunities or enjoying club experiences. The fun for me will be the exciting things they will learn and see!

It is extremely rewarding to hear from students who have taken advantage of the opportunities these funds provide.

This past year, the Dean’s Excellence Fund helped Anna Pratt travel to Uganda. Three-fourths of Ugandans work in agriculture and half are 15 or younger.

A CALS agricultural and extension education grad student, she explored agricultural education programs during her 12-day visit. The educational efforts there clearly improve a nation and its people’s lives.

CALS undergrads Eric Ball, Austin O’Neill and Dustin Winston stayed closer to home and attended the International FCStone Global Markets Outlook Conference in Orlando, Florida, in early March. The Fortune 500 company focuses on agricultural risk management, a CALS priority.

The conference included a Global Dairy Market Outlook session, a key factor in Idaho’s economy where dairy operators must factor in international considerations daily.

We use the CALS Dean’s Excellence Fund at home, too, for all sorts of fun projects.

A few months ago, we gathered in the Ag Science Building foyer outside the dean’s office to celebrate with 8-year-old Hazel Harris. We drew her name from among the many children who joined Summer of Science programs last summer at the Moscow Farmers Market.

Hazel won the top prize. She chose a microscope kit. For a few minutes in the foyer, it looked like she was never going to let go of it. Those moments, as they say, were priceless.

CALS will be back at the market again this summer to give children fun views of as many of our scientific endeavors as we can. Last year’s lineup ranged from nutrition and a garbanzo-bean chocolate chip cookie tasting to food science and fermented foods to entomology and butterflies.

The Dean’s Excellence Fund paid for Summer of Science supplies and for a student for creative efforts to show off our science, and to make it fun.

So with Vandal Giving Day’s arrival, I look forward to more funds and more fun for students, the community and for the pleasure of supporting good deeds. I hope you will join me.

Michael P Parrella, dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

Michael P. Parrella

College of Agricultural and Life Sciences

By the Numbers

138 students attended 2019’s first 2 UIdaho Bound sessions on the Moscow campus including 79 on March 23 and 59 on March 30. 3 sessions are planned in Boise, Twin Falls and Idaho Falls in May. Then UIdaho Bound sessions will return to Moscow in June.

Our Stories — Vandal Giving Day is Today

Vandal Giving Day is in progress. U of I-wide, the online fundraising event supports an array of activities and programs to make the university a better place.CALS Excellence Fund support

Donations for CALS programs help fund a wide range of student activities at the department and college levels.

Since 2017, donations to the CALS Excellence Fund supported more than 150 students and faculty to attend meetings or participate in projects nationally and internationally.

Student travel included trips to Sun Valley, Twin Falls, Spokane and Boise for state and regional meetings and to Canada, Scotland and Uganda for unique experiences in the wider world.

Focus areas included dairy management meetings, commercial greenhouse tours, dietetics and nutrition conferences, science communication workshops, entomology, meat industry updates and just about every other topic that CALS embraces.

The CALS Excellence Fund allows students the opportunity to gain industry knowledge outside the classroom.

Vandal Giving Day donations enhance the college’s and departments’ ability to bring world-renowned agricultural professionals and alumni to campus to share experiences and research with students, faculty and staff, and provides much needed scholarship support.

CALS Speaker Focuses on Immigration April 18

The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences will host Ali Noorani, a leading voice on immigration in the U.S., April 18 as part of the CALS Speaker Series.CALS Speaker Series immigration speaker Ali Noorani visits Moscow April 18.

Noorani will speak at 6 p.m. in the Kenworthy Performing Arts Centre at 508 S. Main St. in Moscow. The event is free and open to the public.

Noorani serves as National Immigration Forum executive director. The non-partisan advocacy organization works to promote the value of immigrants and immigration by working with faith, law enforcement and business leaders.

He grew up in California as the son of Pakistani immigrants. Noorani said he quickly learned how to forge alliances among people of wide-ranging backgrounds. He is regarded as one of the nation’s most innovative coalition builders.

Before joining the National Immigration Forum in 2008, Ali was executive director of the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition. He has served in leadership roles within public health and environmental organizations.

He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Noorani earned a master’s in public health from Boston University and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. Ali lives in Washington, D.C.

Noorani wrote “There Goes the Neighborhood: How Communities Overcome Prejudice and Meet the Challenge of American Immigration,” published by Prometheus Books in 2017. He hosts the “Only in America” podcast.

Faces and Places

Christie HubbardPlant sciences grad student Christie Hubbard took first in a regional oral presentation competition at the Western Society of Weed Science annual meeting in March. She won the society’s Rita Beard Memorial Scholarship, a stipend to help students attend professional society meetings. Her presentation, ”Plant Distribution Data Aid Creation of Invasion Susceptibility Models in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem,” was a collaborative project with U of I researchers Eva Strand, Don Morishita and Timothy Prather.

Damilola RaiyemoPlant sciences graduate student Damilola Raiyemo placed third in a poster competition at the national Weed Science Society of America meeting. His poster was “Safener May Enhance Tolerance to Soil-Applied Herbicide for Winter Wheat Varieties Grown in the Pacific Northwest.” Collaborators in the research included Joan Campbell, Rong Ma, William Price, Traci Rauch and Timothy Prather.


  • April 4 — China on the Palouse: The Rice Theory of Culture — Evidence that wheat farming made the west and northern China more individualistic than the east, Teaching and Learning Center, Room 47, 3:30 p.m.
  • April 5 — CALS Wine and Cheese Gala, 1912 Center, 412 E. Third St., Moscow. 4-7 p.m.
  • April 5CALS Awards nomination deadline by 5 p.m.
  • April 6-7 — Mom’s Weekend Cookie Decorating with consumer science expert-in-residence Candi Bailey, Margaret Ritchie School of Family and Consumer Sciences, Carmelita Spencer Foods Laboratory, Niccolls Building. RSVP $25 per person. Saturday at 9 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.; Sunday at 9 a.m.
  • April 15 — Center for Health in the Human Ecosystem IVIS Imaging Service Center Technology Access Grants application deadline.
  • April 18 — CALS Speaker Series hosts Ali Noorani, National Immigration Forum executive director, Kenworthy Performing Arts Centre, 508 S. Main St., Moscow. 6 p.m.
  • April 19Quest for Earth, Earth Week motivational talk by CALS environmental chemist Greg Moller, Ag Science Room 106 Auditorium and online, 9:30 a.m.
  • April 19CALS Alumni and Friends Awards nomination deadline
  • April 23 — All CALS Meeting, Vandal Ballroom, Bruce M. Pitman Center, Moscow, 8:30 a.m. PDT

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College of Agricultural & Life Sciences

Physical Address:
E. J. Iddings Agricultural Science Laboratory, Room 52
606 S Rayburn St

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive MS 2331
Moscow, ID 83844-2331

Phone: 208-885-6681

Fax: 208-885-6654