March-April 2019

Thinking about Leading an International Travel Course?

“Just do it! It can be a lot of work, but every study abroad experience of mine has been incredibly rewarding. And there are lots of resources in CALS to help with the planning and logistics, so that part of a travel course isn’t too much of a burden on faculty.” - Stephen Dinsmore, NREM, (Costa Rica, Madagascar, Tanzania, and Antarctica)


“I lead programs because they are easy to do, they are fun to do, and they result in tremendous student learning – both professionally and personally.  They are also highly valued by ISU’s leadership (President, Provost, Deans, etc.) and by the students who enrolled.” - Lee Burras, Agronomy, (Costa Rica, Uruguay, Ecuador and France)


“Although leading a travel course can be a lot of work, many of the programs have at least one additional co-leader to help with the planning, logistics and travel. I personally have enjoyed learning more about myself while traveling abroad and working to enhance some of my personal skills. I have also enjoyed interacting with the students on a more personal level and watching them grow as they step out of their comfort zone.” - Mary Wiedenhoeft, Agronomy, (New Zealand)


“Leading travel courses has also allowed me to learn about the world and agriculture production in different regions, giving me stories and information to add to my on-campus courses.” - Kevin Duerfeldt, GRS, (Uganda, China and Brazil)



“It’s a unique experience to interact with our students on a one-on-one basis and give them a unique and important educational and life experience. In addition, it is an opportunity to visit, learn, and build or maintain connections with another country (or show students about your home country, as in my case).” – Jack Dekkers, Animal Science, (The Netherlands)

If you are interested in learning more about creating and leading a study abroad travel course, please contact Jodi Cornell 4-1851, 0018 Curtiss Hall (CALS Global Programs).  It is best to start planning 12-18 months before a program takes place, so it is never too early to start planning!  For more information,

2019 GCHERA World Agriculture Prize Call for Nominations

The World Agriculture Prize is an international award of the Global Confederation of Higher Education Associations for the Agricultural and Life Sciences (GCHERA).  In 2019, there will be two GCHERA World Agriculture Prizes (WAP) awarded, each in the amount of $100,000 USD.  At least one prize will be awarded to a person from a country which is NOT listed in the terms and conditions for submitting a nomination as a country having a developed economy. The focus of these prizes is to encourage the global development of the mission of higher education institutions in education, research, innovation and outreach in the agricultural and life sciences by recognizing the distinguished contribution of an individual to this mission.  The prizes are generously sponsored by the Education Development Foundation of Nanjing Agricultural University and Da Bei Nong Group.  Nominations for 2019 should be submitted no later than 17:00 GMT on April 30, 2019.  Find more information and online submission here

The 2019 GCHERA World Agriculture Prize Awarding Ceremony will be held on October 28, 2019, at Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, China.

Marketing your Study Abroad Experience Workshop

Wednesday, March 27, 2019
12:10-1:00 p.m.
0013 Curtiss Hall

The CALS Study Abroad Office will be hosting a workshop to help students reflect on the professional benefits of their study abroad experience(s). We will discuss how to format international experience on a resume and how to incorporate study abroad into behavioral based interview questions. This workshop is applicable to those that have participated in a faculty-led travel course or a semester-long/exchange program (or any student interested in studying abroad).

Please RSVP via Google Forms by Monday, March 25

CALS Student Program Currently Accepting Applications

Semester Along the Nile: Learning in Uganda, Fall 2019 Semester allows Global Resource Systems and College of Agriculture and Life Science students to complete academic coursework, including service learning (GLOBE 494A) in Global Resource Systems, while living and learning in Kamuli, Uganda, for the 2019 fall semester. While in Kamuli, students will be enrolled full-time and also have the opportunity to complete on-line ISU courses and, in some majors, complete an internship or independent project. Application Deadline: March 23, 2019

CALS Faculty/Students Prepare for Global Experiences - Spring Break 2019

Business Development Study Trip in Brazil (Ag Entrepreneurship)
Kevin Kimle, Dave Krog – 13 students
The objective for this course is for students to develop knowledge and skills in international business development through experiential learning. Students will act as a consulting team for 3-4 early stage U.S agricultural technology businesses, assessing the market potential for their products in Brazil and creating a roadmap for developing their businesses.

Soils and Crops of Costa Rica (Agronomy)
Lee Burras, Amber Anderson – 36 students
Field examination of the soils, crops and water use systems of Costa Rica via visits to active farms, ministry field sites, and processing plants. Discussions led by practicing professionals including Enrique Villalobos (UCR, Professor-Emeritus) and Lee Burras.

Integrated Management of Tropical Crops (HORT, PLP, ENT)
Mark Gleason, Erin Hodgson, Donald Lewis, Barb Clawson, Lina Rodriguez-Salamanca – 20 students
This program provides an introduction to production of a wide variety of tropical crops (coffee, banana, pineapple, mango, sugar cane, cut flowers, vegetables, papaya, etc.) from the perspective of Costa Rica. The class also explores Costa Rican ecology, history, and culture. Close cooperation with University of Costa Rica faculty allow many unique opportunities during the class visit.

BREXIT: Scotland and England...History, Political Implications and Possible Outcomes (Economics)
Joshua Rosenbloom, Amy Brandau – 20 students
This Edinburgh & London trip will offer an opportunity to explore the history and government of both Scotland and Great Britain.  Class time prior to the trip will include discussion of the history of the European Union, the history of Britain, the vote by Britain to exit the EU, the implications for Great Britain and the politics around implementing the decision. 

Agricultural Production, Business, and Trade in Spain
Ebby Luvaga, Sergio Lence, Marshall McDaniel – 22 students
The course objective is to enhance students' understanding of production and competition in agricultural world markets.  Students will analyze production agriculture, business and trade in Spain and compare them with respect to the U.S. Pre-departure orientation will familiarize students with the history culture, politics, geography, soils, agriculture, economy and trade of Spain.

Service Learning Trip to Uganda (GLOBE)
Dick Schultz, Dorothy Masinde – 14 students
Service learning trip focusing on agroforestry, education, nutrition and health, animal science and post-harvest handling.  Students will spend several days working at primary schools and with local communities in the Kamuli District on agroforestry refurbishing a tree nursery and establishing woodlots, with mothers and children on nutrition and health at Nutrition Education Centers, with livestock farmers on feeding and housing, and with post-harvest handling programs on food preservation and storage at schools.  Follow this group on Facebook

Spring 2019 Semester Long Programs

43 CALS students are spending spring semester abroad at various universities in 18 countries.

Scholarship Opportunities

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. The program includes intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences designed to promote rapid language gains.  The CLS Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and administered by American Councils for International Education. Contact Ginger Nally (CLS adviser at ISU) for application assistance and more information.

Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grants are designed to help support undergraduates as they seek knowledge and experience in their academic fields by studying abroad. Seventy-five $1,000 grants are awarded each year.  Completed applications are due March 15, 2019.  More

Borlaug and Cochran Fellowship Programs

Advance notice of anticipated FY19 funded opportunities from the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service for institutions to host Borlaug and Cochran fellows has been released. The USDA/FAS Borlaug and Cochran fellowship programs promote food security and economic growth by providing short-term training and collaborative research opportunities to fellows from developing and middle‐income countries, emerging markets, and emerging democracies.

FY2019 Projected Cochran Fellowship Training Topics

FY2019 Borlaug Fellowship Potential Opportunities

Top 10 Reasons to host a Borlaug Scholar or Cochran Group:

  1. Fulfillment of ISU mission and CALS strategic plan
  2. Global networking
  3. Opportunity to witness development as it happens
  4. Enhance departmental collaborations
  5. Broaden your international intellect
  6. Funding up to ~ $55,000 depending of program (includes indirect costs @ 10%)
  7. Mentor Salary (buyout) ~ $3,500-7,000 depending on program
  8. Inspire your research
  9. Make new friends
  10. Change and enhance your life!

CALS Global Programs provides assistance with visas, travel, orientation and financial management for Fellows placed at ISU-CALS. CALS faculty and staff interested in submitting a proposal should contact Tammi Martin, Program Coordinator in CALS Global Programs, 4-9237

Visiting Scholar Spotlight

Ms. Sinebongo Mdyogolo, a visiting scholar from University of Free State, South Africa, is currently working with Dr. Max Rothschild on “detection of lethal and harmful genes that can be linked to impaired beef fertility in South Africa.” Bongo will develop new skills that will be useful for her genomic research. Generation of genomic data and the general use of genomic tools in South Africa is at a grassroots level, with a handful of experts in the animal genomics field available. However, it is anticipated that genomic data over the next few years will grow especially with the possible decrease in prices for producing sequence and genotype data. With these developments, researchers that are more skilled will be required for data handling and undertaking advanced genomic research with the intent of increasing the country’s’ global competitiveness. Training young researchers now in preparation for the future is imperative not only for South African research but for possibly tapping into research areas that are currently neglected in other African countries due to the lack of skilled researchers and research infrastructure. Iowa State University is among the world leaders in animal genomics research thus receiving training from ISU will be a step towards achieving the goal of tapping into genomics.  Above all this training will add value to the current research that is being conducted.



Where are CALS Faculty/Staff Traveling?




  • Amber Anderson, Agronomy, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Amy Brandau, Economics, United Kingdom, co-lead student travel course
  • Lee Burras, Agronomy, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Michael Castellano, Agronomy, Kenya, participate in workshop; project collaboration
  • Barb Clawson, Horticulture, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course; teach
  • Mark Gleason, PLP, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Erin Hodgson, Entomology, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Boris Jovanovic, NREM, Puerto Rico, participate in international conference
  • Jessica Juarez, Animal Science, Kenya, project collaboration
  • Ramesh Kanwar, ABE, India, project collaboration
  • Kevin Kimle, Economics, Brazil, co-lead student travel course
  • David Krog, Economics, Brazil, co-lead student travel course
  • Sergio Lence, Economics, Spain, co-lead student travel course
  • Donald Lewis, Entomology, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Ebby Luvaga, Economics, Spain, co-lead student travel course
  • Dorothy Masinde, Horticulture, Uganda, co-lead student travel course
  • Marshall McDaniel, Agronomy, Spain, co-lead student travel course
  • William Meeker, Statistics, India, Denmark, invited lectures and presentations
  • Gail Nonnecke, Horticulture, Uganda, activities with ISU students; project development
  • Lina Rodriquez-Salamanca, PLP, Costa Rica, co-lead student travel course
  • Joshua Rosenbloom, Economics, United Kingdom, co-lead student travel course
  • Richard Schultz, NREM, Uganda, co-lead student travel course
  • Joshua Selsby, Animal Science, United Kingdom, project collaboration
  • Keith Vorst, FSHN, Germany, invited presentation at international conference
  • Grace Wilkinson, EEOB, Puerto Rico, participate in international conference

March, 2019

Friday, March 15, 2019 Application Deadline Phi Kappa Phi Study Abroad Grants

Monday-Friday, March 18-22, 2019 ISU Spring Break

Saturday, March 23, 2019 Application Deadline Semester Along the Nile: Learning in Uganda, Fall, 2019

Wednesday, March 27, 2019 Workshop Marketing your Study Abroad Experience

April, 2019

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 Deadline GCHERA World Agriculture Prize Nominations

Global Update, a newsletter to keep Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences faculty and staff informed of international activities and initiatives, is prepared bi-monthly. To subscribe, send your name, e-mail address and the message "Global Update subscribe" to  To unsubscribe, send "Global Update unsubscribe."