October 16, 2015

Agriculture college to mark 60th anniversary

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. – The College of Agricultural Sciences is celebrating its 60th anniversary, making this year’s annual Fall Festival a special event. 

The main activities for the Third Annual Fall Festival/FFA Day are Thursday, Oct. 22, beginning at 9 a.m. on the front lawn of the Agriculture Building with an official welcome by the dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences Mickey A. Latour and Saluki men’s basketball coach Barry Hinson. 

The event will draw high school students from around the region for a day of hands-on learning activities. Students break for lunch shortly after noon. 

Sessions include:

• Build: Framing Your Future – Leadership skills workshop with current SIU agriculture education students and FFA officers and Chris Clemons, instructor in plant, soil and agricultural sciences.

• Rural Economics and Biomass – Students learn about agribusiness economics by examining current rural economic events and the industrial organization of biomass with Ira Altman, chair of agribusiness economics.

• Tree Identification in Southern Illinois Forests – Students learn various ways to identify trees, shrubs and vines, and will discuss the importance of some common tree species with Jon Schoonover, professor of forestry.

• I’m Eating What? – An interactive nutrition course exploring what we eat and why it matters, with Brenda Green, instructor in the human nutrition and dietetics program, and SNAC, a Registered Student Organization.

• Take a Container, Make a Smile – Students will make a mixed container flower arrangement with Amy Boren, senior lecturer in horticulture.

• Messy Bratwurst – Students will learn about bratwurst quality with Mickey Latour, dean of the college.

• Pop a Top to Digestion – Students will learn about ruminant (cattle) digestion and metabolism, how rumens digest different feeds and how that affects the animals’ overall health, with Rebecca Atkinson, associate professor of animal science.

• Critter Cams – Students take to the field to visit a camera study of deer on SIU Farms, learning how cameras can document wildlife and habitat use, with graduate research assistant Ryan Leeson, forestry. 

On Friday, Oct. 23, alumni, industry professionals, faculty and staff come together for the Fall Festival dinner and awards program. The event takes place on the front lawn of the Agriculture Building under the tent. Arrive at 6 p.m. for social time, dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. with the program to follow. Tickets are $15, children under six years old are free. Get tickets www.siualumni.com/fallfest. The awards program recognizes outstanding alumni in three categories: early career, mid-career and lifetime.