Division News

Science and agricultural journalism student Holly Enowski has been selected to participate in the 2020 Future Leaders in Agriculture Program. Through the program, 20 undergraduates and 10 graduate students spend a week in Washington, D.C., and attend the USDA Agricultural Outlook Forum.

Karisha Devlin will serve as co-CEO of Annie’s Project Education for Farm Women, a nonprofit that educates women in agriculture.

Agricultural economics alumnus Caleb Jones was named as the 2019 Missouri Times Statesman of the Year.

Joe Roetheli, agricultural economics alumnus, and his wife, Judy, have been recognized as the Missouri Small Business Development Center’s “Most Impressive Client” as part of the America Small Business Development Center’s 40th anniversary celebration.

Brinker Farms received the 2019 Missouri Leopold Conservation Award, which recognizes extraordinary achievement in voluntary conservation. Travis Brinker, agricultural economics alumnus, is part of the operation.

The 2020 Cambio de Colores Conference will be held from June 17 to June 19 at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. This year’s theme is “Embracing Differences and Empowering Communities.”

Through 5 p.m. on Friday, March 13, the Graduate Professional Council will accept nominations for its 2020 GPC Awards. To access more information or nomination forms, go to gpc.missouri.edu/awards.

Director’s Updates & Engagement

The hospitality management faculty approved sunsetting the hospitality management online degree program offered through Mizzou Online. Current online students may complete their studies and graduate. However, the online program is no longer accepting new applications.  Faculty retain the decision rights to offer individual courses as online. I appreciate the hospitality management faculty’s openness to self-evaluate the online program and make this decision.

CAFNR shared a divisional undergraduate student admit report on Feb. 4. Compared with year-ago numbers, total first-time-to-college (FTC) admits in divisional degree programs were 28% higher — 32 more admitted students this year than last year. By program, FTC admits were 58% higher for agribusiness management and 29% higher for hospitality management. Agricultural education and leadership had no change in FTC admits, and FTC admits into the general agriculture degree were down 19%. I appreciate all who have engaged in recruiting and rolling out the red carpet for current students. Good deeds cause the word to spread.

For a three-year period, the division has committed to partnering with CAFNR to provide financial support for the Missouri Census Research Data Center. The center provides data and resources important to divisional faculty.

I traveled to California February 11 and 12 for a meeting of the board of the Graduate Institute of Cooperative Leadership (GICL).  

February 14th I attended a Missouri Department of Agriculture meeting to discuss continued synergies with agribusiness extension.

Also, on February 14th and at the invitation of the Provost, myself and co-chair Leigh Neier addressed the campus deans related to the 2019 campus faculty satisfaction committee report with a campus release of February 20th.

The new(er) divisional faculty and myself gathered for an open discussion session on February 10th.

I had the pleasure of meeting with all three job candidates interviewing for the position of director of the Institute of Public Policy (IPP) in the Truman School within the College of Arts and Sciences.  This hire is of strategic importance to the division because of the overlap into Missouri rural public policy analysis.

Shout-Out goes to persons who have completed Conflict-of-Interest reporting!

Research, Extension and Engagement Activities

Scott Brown’s latest Farm Progress column is titled “Expect cattle prices to improve.”

For Hoard’s Dairyman, Scott Brown writes that “Risk exists even with improved milk prices.”

While in Iceland for her Fulbright experience, Mary Hendrickson had an opportunity to have an impromptu lunch with Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir.

On Feb. 4, Sarah Low spoke at 
Great Northwest Day at the CapitolHer talk, titled “Building Entrepreneurship in your Region,” covered entrepreneurship as a rural economic development strategy, and it gave examples of MU Extension programming and services aimed at fostering entrepreneurial ecosystem building in northwest Missouri.

A “Direct and Intermediated Marketing of Local Foods in the United States” paper from Sarah Low and Stephen Vogel recently ranked in SSRN’s Top Ten download list within the TransportRN: Green Logistics topic area.

From Feb. 2 to Feb. 4, Willi Meyers attended the Southern AAE meetings in Louisville, Kentucky.

Qin, HuaMartha Bass, Jessica D. Ulrich-Schad, David Matarrita-Cascante, Christine Sanders and Barituka Bekee. 2020. Community, Natural Resources and Sustainability: Overview of an Interdisciplinary and International LiteratureSustainability.  

Six-Month Snapshot

The “Six-Month Snapshot” highlights faculty’s planned research, teaching, extension, engagement and service activities for the next six months. By sharing this information, the intent is to enable divisional faculty to learn about one another and identify opportunities to collaborate.

All faculty will receive an invitation to contribute in an upcoming issue. In this issue, we feature Kerry Clark and Adam Cletzer.

Kerry Clark
Assistant Research Professor
Rural Sociology

What are the top three focuses of your research program?
I work in sustainable and organic agricultural research and collaborate with the economists and sociologists in DASS. I try to help farmers access tools that make organic no-till production easier and more successful. We are working to help farmers reduce tillage and improve soil quality.

How do you plan to share about your research findings?
To share our research findings, we have annual on-farm field days, and I cooperate with River Valley Agricultural Exchange in Marshall, Missouri, and Byron Seeds to reach their organic growers. We also host an informational booth at the annual Mid-America Organic Conference and sometimes speak at that event.

What audiences do you plan to reach with extension activities?
More than half of organic growers in Missouri are Mennonite or Amish, so our extension activities through our private partners help us reach an audience that is not likely to otherwise engage with the university. Organic production is becoming more prevalent in Missouri, especially with the recent influx of Amish we have experienced in many parts of the state. I also engage a lot with farmers who are seeking new innovations and who like to share their ideas with researchers.

At what events do you plan to share extension resources?
We switched a few years ago from doing university research center field days to doing on-farm field days because the farmer response is much better. I limit my talks to a small percentage of the day and let the farmers talk and interact among one other. Discussion always seems to go better than instruction among Missouri’s farmers.

Adam Cletzer
Assistant Professor
Agricultural Education and Leadership

What goals do you have set for your research program?
My singular goal is to dismantle society’s unconscious need for romantic, individualist, messianic, heroic leaders that are going to save us all. It’s infantile and lazy. This is accomplished, in part, by adding to the body of knowledge on ecological, post-heroic and collectivist forms of leadership.

What are the top three focuses of your research program?
Empirical support for the efficacy of ecological forms of leadership in organizations. Discovery of best practices when conducting leadership in organizations from this perspective. Use of complex adaptive systems theory and complexity leadership theory as theoretical frameworks for conducting leadership studies.

What changes do you plan to make to the courses you teach?
Previously, in Leadership in Today’s World, I asked student groups to bring in guest speakers they wanted to interview in front of the class about their leadership, and we’ve had some good ones: congressmen, football coaches and state officials. However, they usually just talked about having a vision and being a servant leader. Lame. So, this semester, I’m having students go to them, conduct the interview, dissect their leadership actions in light of theories and then present it to the class.

What engagement activities do you have planned?
I’ve recently become certified in Kirton’s Adaption-Innovation Psychometric Instrument (KAI), which measures the problem-solving style of individuals. I’m looking forward to conducting a few workshops for groups with the city, FFA and student organizations on their individual problem-solving styles and how it affects how they work together as a group.

Industry News to Know

Food Business News reports on a Women in the Workplace study that found that women across all industries have increasingly advanced into senior leadership positions, but women tend to be underrepresented at senior levels in food and beverage manufacturing firms.

Subscribe to The Feed from Farmer Mac. A free quarterly publication, The Feed shares insights related to finance, outlook and market news, and it presents some great data analysis.

Skift offers a series of newsletters focused on the hospitality sector. Choose from daily or weekly subscriptions that share news relevant to global travel, meetings and events, wellness and travel innovation.

Submit Your News

If you have information to share in the DASS Wrap-Up, then please send your news items to Alice Roach or Joe Parcell.