Three well-known national organizations – American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America and Soil Science Society of America – recently presented awards to several students and faculty members in the College of Agricultural Sciences at Colorado State University.
Raj Khosla and Patrick Byrne were named as part of the 2011 Class of Fellows of the American Society of Agronomy (ASA). Byrne, professor of plant breeding and genetics in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, has been involved in many public outreach programs regarding the benefits and risks of genetically engineered crops. Byrne’s research focuses on understanding the quantitative and molecular genetics to improve crops. Khosla, professor of precision agriculture in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, has developed an extensive program to understand and show how space-based technologies, such as GPS, can be better used to enhance agricultural productivity, profitability and environmental conservation. Khosla was also named to the 2011 Class of Fellows of the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA).
Mark Brick, professor of plant breeding and genetics in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, was named to the 2011 Class of Fellows of the Crop Science Society of America (CSSA). Brick’s program focuses on dry edible bean breeding and genetics. Brick has served as a member of the CSSA executive committee and has served as an associate and technical editor of Agronomy Journal.
CSSA honored Jack Fenwick with its prestigious Seed Science Award. Fenwick, associate professor in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, has developed seed science courses offered through Continuing Education. He has been recognized as an outstanding teacher in the College of Agricultural Sciences, Distinguished Service Award recipient, and faculty advisor to CSU’s successful Agronomy Club.
Several Colorado State students also picked up awards.
Griffin Carpenter, a sophomore in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, earned first place in the undergraduate oral scientific paper presentation. Carpenter’s presentation was titled “Comparison of seed coat luster in a recombinant inbred line of shiny and opaque black beans.” Mark Brick, Barry Ogg and Karen Cichy co-authored the paper. Carpenter is an intern in the Common Bean Coordinated Agricultural Project, known as BeanCAP, and is studying the variation for nutritional quality in dry edible beans.
Steven Becker, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, earned second place in the graduate student poster competition. Becker’s poster, titled “Drought tolerant trait identification in synthetic hexaploid wheat,” was co-authored by Patrick Byrne, Scott Reid and William Bauerle. Becker works with Byrne, a professor in the department, examining drought tolerance in wheat.
Ryan Busby, a Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate Degree Program in Ecology, earned the Francis and Evelyn Clark Soil Biology Scholarship presented by the Soil Science Society of America. Busby is researching the interactions between cheatgrass and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and how these interactions differ from those in native vegetation. The scholarship recognizes the importance of soil biology and the understanding of soil, plant and microbial interactions and of nutrient cycling in terrestrial ecosystems.
The awards were part of the annual meetings of the ASA, CSSA and SSSA held this fall in San Antonio, Texas.