Iowa State University

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News Service


News Service

Annette Hacker, manager, (515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777


Proposed Fy05 Operating Budget Reallocates $8.5 Million for Employee Compensation Increases

Iowa State University's top funding priority in the fiscal year that begins July 1 will be increases to the salary and benefits package for faculty and professional and scientific employees. The university will self-fund, through internal allocations, $7.1 million in compensation increases for faculty and P&S staff. It will honor another $2.4 million in compensation increases to Merit staff as negotiated in the state bargained contract.

These details are part of the FY05 budget university leaders will present to the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, for approval at the board's June 15-16 meeting in Okoboji. The university's proposed FY05 general fund budget is $422,510,553, about $3.8 million leaner than it was on July 1, 2003.

See complete news release.

Nancy Knight Awarded National Recognition for Recruiting Minority Graduate Students

Nancy Knight, manager of graduate programs for Iowa State University's College of Engineering, has been named 2004 University Member of the Year by the National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science, Inc. (GEM). Knight was recognized June 10 at the consortiums annual conference in Las Vegas.

Knight was acknowledged for her efforts to recruit African American, American Indian and Hispanic American students to Iowa State through the consortiums graduate engineering fellowship programs. Under her leadership, these historically underrepresented students are recruited to ISU College of Engineering research programs to work with faculty, and are given financial support while they pursue masters and doctoral degrees.

Knight received both her bachelor of arts degree in Spanish and Latin American international studies and her master of science degree in higher education from Iowa State University. She has worked in higher education for more than 15 years in the areas of financial aid, undergraduate and graduate admissions, and career services.

See complete news release.

Biosecurity lab to be dedicated June 10

A $3.2 million upgrade to the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory will be dedicated Thursday, June 10, at 4 p.m. The addition will expand and enhance the laboratory's biosecurity.

The Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory provides diagnostic services to Iowa's veterinarians. Staff performs more than one million tests and manages more than 50,000 cases each year. A critical function of the lab is to work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the early detection of foreign animal diseases, such as foot-and-mouth disease and avian influenza.

"Upgrades to the diagnostic laboratory will reduce the risk of cross contamination or further dissemination of animal diseases. In addition, the laboratory will be better prepared to counter any introduction of foreign animal diseases in Iowa," said Dr. Gary Osweiler, Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory director.

The new 4,000-square-foot biosecurity unit will make it possible to decontaminate vehicles that deliver animals, and collect and hold wastes for decontamination. The unit provides a secure necropsy and Biosecurity Level Three (BL3)-capable lab where suspect diseases can be contained for identification or characterization.

See complete news release.

David Holger Appointed to New Post in Provost's Office

David Holger, associate dean for academic programs and budget in the College of Engineering at Iowa State University, has been appointed associate provost for academic programs and dean of the Graduate College. The three-year appointment is effective July 1.

The new position is one outcome of a reorganization within the provost unit to reduce administrative costs in the face of ongoing budget cuts. It merges responsibilities held by vice provost for undergraduate programs Howard Shapiro and Graduate College Dean James Bloedel. The office of the vice provost for undergraduate programs will close July 1. Provost Ben Allen announced in April that oversight for the Graduate College would be moved into his office to more closely coordinate undergraduate and graduate programs. Bloedel will continue to coordinate the university's research function. Shapiro and Graduate College associate dean John Mayfield retain their faculty appointments at Iowa State.

See complete news release.

Business faculty to study European meat tracking

Two Iowa State University College of Business faculty members will visit England and Germany in June to study technology used for tracking meat through the production process with the aim of improving food safety in the United States.

Brian Mennecke and Anthony Townsend, both associate professors of management information systems, will evaluate how tracking information is collected and retrieved quickly. New technologies will be tested, including radio frequency identification (RFID), bar code technologies, integration techniques and information systems.

The ISU professors will study the protocol Europeans use once processing begins. They will then return to the United States to see how domestic operations can more effectively incorporate radio frequency identification technology to meet future trade and agricultural resource needs.

See complete news release.

Thomas named interim Education dean

Iowa State University Provost Benjamin Allen has appointed Jerry Thomas, professor and chair of health and human performance, as interim dean of the College of Education effective Aug. 1.

He replaces Dean Walter Gmelch, who is joining the University of San Francisco.

Earlier this year, President Gregory Geoffroy announced a plan to combine the colleges of Family and Consumer Sciences and Education to reduce administrative costs and enhance synergies between the two colleges. Thomas will fill the interim role until a permanent dean for the combined college is selected.

See complete news release.

Iowa State University Engineering Students Place in National Bridge-Building Competition

A team of 25 Iowa State University engineering students recently placed eighth overall at the 13th annual National Student Steel Bridge Competition, sponsored by the American Institute of Steel Construction and the American Society of Civil Engineers.

It was Iowa States highest overall placing ever at the national competition, held this year at the Colorado School of Mines, Golden. The ISU team, the largest at the national competition,also placed second in two categories speed and economy.

Here was the team's challenge: replace a century-old bridge that crosses an environmentally sensitive river and carries trucks that serve farms and agricultural processing industries. The replacement needed to beconstructed quickly, and several other technical specifications and limitations were in place as well. The projects werebuilt in a School of Mines gymnasium, complete with a duct tape river.

See complete news release.

National Hydrology Workshop at Iowa State University June 15-16

Iowa State University and the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science, Inc., will bring 45 scientists to campus June 15-16 for a workshop entitled, "Defining Key Scientific Questions on the Hydrology of Intensively Managed Landscapes in the Glaciated Midwest."

Intensively managed landscapes control specific hydrologic processes for the benefit of farming. Featured workshop speakers will discuss the greatest research challenges concerning these landscapes, such as stream hydrology, groundwater hydrology, hydropedology, atmospheric sciences, aquatic ecology and economics.

See complete news release.

Stone dragon

A magical landscape inspired by Celtic culture is one of 13 gardens selected for a prestigious garden festival in England this summer. "Otherworld Garden" is the creation of Mira Engler, associate professor of landscape architecture.

News release.

ISU in the news

Stress affects memory


People are woefully bad at recalling details of their own traumatic experiences.

"People come away from these experiences feeling they will never forget what happened, but they confuse that with thinking they remember the details."

-- Gary Wells, distinguished professor of psychology


Mosquitoes ready to swarm

The Iowa Channel

The mosquitoes have hatched, says Wayne Rowley, professor of entomology. The state already is seeing some significant mosquito populations, particularly in Des Moines and Scott County. Mosquito misery often hits its stride the first week in June.


Mother Nature hits crops


Some farmers in the upper middle portion of Iowa are estimating they will need to replant 10 to 20 percent of their crop due to May storms.

-- Palle Pedersen, assistant professor of agronomy

Article. (Note: Go to second article on the page.)

GMCs to fuel

New Zealand Herald

Basil Nikolau, professor of biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, was interviewed about plant-based energy by science writer Simon Collins who visited campus last week as part of a New Zealand delegation visiting Iowa to explore biotech collaborations. Nikolau was education in New Zealand.


Related article.

Back from bankruptcy


While it's illegal for employers to discriminate against someone who has declared bankruptcy, many employers do look at credit reports before hiring or promoting.

"If you have two people who are equally qualified, it's hard for it not to enter the picture."

-- Tahira Hira, assistant to the president