September-October 2018

2018 Feeding the World Seminar Series

The Feeding the World Seminar Series kicked off its 12th year on Thursday, August 30, 2018.  The series will continue through fall semester with a variety of speakers and topics. The next seminar, "EarthEmpower:  Start-up or Status Quo in International Development?" featuring Rachael Cox, CEO and Co-Founder, EarthEmpower, Guatemala, will take place Thursday, September 6, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m., in 1204 Kildee Hall. The seminar series is sponsored by the M.E. Ensminger International Chair in Animal Science and the Raymond and Mary Baker Chair in Global Agriculture. Full seminar series details here

10th GCHERA World Conference

"Leadership for the Sustainable Development of Agricultural and Life Science Universities" will be the focus of the 10th GCHERA Conference to be held April 25-26, 2019, at the University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (USAMV) in Bucharest, Romania.  More information can be found in the official invitation letter or by visiting the GCHERA website at

Global Programs Hosts International Visitors

CALS Global Programs hosted 13 students and 2 group leaders from Yeungnam University in South Korea as part of the Agriculture and Natural Resources of the Midwest study abroad program.  The group visited Iowa State University from July 6-16, 2018, and participated in many on and off campus educational tours as well as some cultural activities in Central Iowa. . .more


CALS Global Programs will also be hosting 6 visiting students from Northeast Agricultural University in China through a new education program agreement. The visiting students will be working with mentors in the Department of Animal Science and the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition on an eight-week learning program from September 4 through October 30. The Iowa State University mentors include Dr. Hugo Ramirez (AN SCI), Dr. Aileen Keating (AN SCI), Dr. Jason Ross (AN SCI), Dr. Ranga Appuhamy Jayasooriya (AN SCI), Nuria Acevedo (FSHN), and Buddhi Lamsal (FSHN).

Paul Kuria, a research scientist from the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) in Nairobi, Kenya arrived at Iowa State University (ISU) on June 18, 2018 for a 12-week program as part of the Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship Program. Paul is being hosted by the Global Programs Department in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and mentored by Dr. Allen Miller, Professor in the Department of Plant Pathology & Microbiology.  More . . .

International Visitors at ISU


Name - Host Mentor(s)

Host Department

Visit Dates

Khon Kaen University

Suppasit Plaengkaeo - Kenneth Stalder

Animal Science

March 6 –
November 6, 2018

Kenya Agricultural and Livestock
Research Organization


Paul Kuria - Allen Miller

Plant Pathology/Microbiology

June 18 –
September 10, 2018

Faculdade de Ciências Agrônomicas
FCA UNESP Botucatu


Rodrigo Alves de Paula - Antonio Mallarino


July 9 –
November 29, 2018

University of Costa Rica
Costa Rica

Enrique Villalobos - Lee Burras


August 7 – 14, 2018

Federal University of Lavras

Joao Carvalho - Silvia Cianzio


August 10, 2018 –
January 31, 2019

Federal University of Vicosa

Leandro Zuffo - Thomas Lubberstedt


August 30, 2018 –
August 28, 2019

EARTH University
Costa Rica

Erasmus Aduteye - Nick Howell/Ajay Nair


September 4 –
December 20, 2018

Northeast Ag University


Ma Shibo - Buddy Lamsal
Shuxuan Zhang - Nuria Acevedo
Haoyu Wang - Hugo Ramirez
Minkhun Gao - Aileen Keating
Yanji Ma - Jason Ross
Xinyuan Zhang - R. Appuhamy Jayasonya

Animal Science
Animal Science
Animal Science
Animal Science

September 4 –
October 30, 2018

Upcoming CALS Study Abroad Programs

Soils and Crops of Costa Rica (Agronomy, EnSCI, GRS)
March 13-23, 2019
Program Director:  Lee Burras

Ag Study Abroad – Poland (ABE, Grad students preferred)
March 15-24, 2019
Program Director:  Jacek Koziel

Agriculture Production, Business and Trade in Spain (Economics)
March 14-25, 2019
Program Directors:  Sergio Lence, Ebby Luvaga, Marshall McDaniel

Exploring the Agri-Culture of Belize (Economics, AGEDS)
May 12-24, 2019
Program Directors:  Theressa Cooper, Ebby Luvaga

Turfgrass Management in England (Horticulture)
May 12-20, 2019
Program Directors:  Nick Christans, Adam Thoms

Animal and Dairy Science in the Netherlands (Animal Science)
May 12-25, 2019
Program Directors:  Jack Dekkers, Jessica Juarez

Semester Along the Nile:  Learning in Uganda
January 14 - May 10, 2019
Program Directors:  Gail Nonnecke,  Catherine Swoboda

Cathedrals, Castles, Culture and Cuisine-sustainable, Safe and Nutritious Food in France (ABE, FSHN)
June 9-22, 2019
Program Directors:  Kurt Rosentrater

Integrated Management of Tropical Crops - Costa Rica (Horticulture, Plant Pathology, Entomology)
March 13-23, 2019
Program Directors:  Barbara Clawson, Mark Gleason, Erin Hodgson, Donald Lewis

Exchange Programs

Incoming exchange students on CALS programs for fall semester:

University College Dublin (Ireland)
Emmet Burns
Anna Daly
Tammy Harkin
Cliona Ryan
Una Sinnott
Ellie Waters

University of Hohenheim (Germany)
Julia Becker

FESIA, Angers (France)
Margaux Renault
Julie Trubert

19 CALS students are studying abroad on a variety of programs in Australia, Greece, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Spain, Thailand, and Uganda.


Mark your calendar for the CALS Study Abroad Fair! The event is a great resource for students to find out more about studying abroad through the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Program directors will be in attendance with all the information concerning their respective programs, as well as other resources such as our STCs, financial aid and more! Click here to learn more about the event and upcoming programs.


Tanzania Trip Report

Read about the daily activities and see wildlife photos as Steve Dinsmore and Julia Blanchong lead a student travel course to Tanzania during spring break 2018.  More . . .

Costa Rica Study Abroad Reunion

Over 50 ISU students and alumni had a chance to reunite with Enrique Villalobos, a program guide from Costa Rica and ISU alumnus (Ph.D, 1983, Crop Production and Physiology).  Enrique was hosted by Iowa State University Department of Agronomy Professor and CALS Study Abroad Program Director, Lee Burras.

During his time at Iowa State, Enrique presented about his experience hosting ISU students, recruited for the upcoming spring 2019 program and had the opportunity to reunite with program alumni at the house of Shelley Taylor, CALS Study Abroad Director, as they shared their life impacts and experiences of the memorable international opportunity. Enrique has assisted as a host and tour guide for the program in Costa Rica since 2006.

Gilman Scholarship

The Gilman Scholarship Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, is an undergraduate grant program for U.S. citizens of limited financial means to enable them to study abroad, thereby internationalizing their outlook and better preparing them to thrive in the global economy. Applications for Spring 2019 and Summer 2019 (early application) are now open. The deadline for both applications is October 2, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. (CST) for both terms

CALS Study Abroad Program Director Q & A

Kevin Duerfeldt, Cargill Global Resource Systems Lecturer in Global Resource Systems and the Department of Horticulture, has been leading international travel opportunities since 2010. Kevin has led programs to the U.S. Virgin Islands, Uganda, China and Brazil. Below are some reasons why Kevin leads study abroad programs and how he gained an interest in international travel.

When did you start leading programs?

  • I started assisting with and co-leading study abroad programs in 2010 while working with the EARTH Program, St. John, USVI as a graduate assistant.

What programs have you led?

  • EARTH Program St. John USVI 2010-2014
  • Uganda Service Learning Program 2015-2018
  • Global Food and Agriculture China 2016 and 2017
  • Global Food and Agriculture Brazil 2018

Why do you lead programs?

  • As a student, I participated in travel programs to Europe, Puerto Rico, and Costa Rica.  These experiences were life changing, expanded my world view to consider perspectives of other people, allowed me to think about how global events impact people around the world, and completely changed my career path.  As an instructor, I want to make those same opportunities available to my students and continue learning about the world to improve my courses.

What would you say to faculty that are considering leading a program?

  • Traveling with students can be both one of the most rewarding and one of the most challenging aspects of teaching at Iowa State University.  On top of the regular course management responsibilities you now have to manage recruitment, travel logistics, and your personal culture/travel shock while helping students through their culture shock.  But, you'll never form as strong of relationships with your students or get to know them in a more meaningful way as you do when traveling abroad with them.  The CALS Study Abroad Office is awesome with helping leaders figure out all aspects of planning and leading travel programs.

What have you learned by leading programs?

  • Leading travel programs 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. 

What do you like to do in your free time?

  • I mainly spend time in my garden and play with my Australian shepherd, Arago. I also like to go to events around Ames with friends, and work on my family’s farm in Southeast Nebraska.

How do you encourage students to study abroad?

  • I mainly try to get them to understand that where ever they go it will be a life changing experience and that it will never be as easy to travel as it is now.  Once they’ve gone once they’re usually ready to go again!




ISU students at Iguazu Falls during "Globe Food and Agriculture - Brazil", Spring, 2018, led by Kevin Duerfeldt and Catherine Swoboda



Student Spotlight

Mikayla Dolch

Major: Agriculture and Life Sciences Education & International Agriculture • Study Abroad Experience: Edinburgh and London & Australia

Mikayla Dolch, a senior in Agriculture and Life Sciences Education and International Agriculture from Villisca, Iowa, took the opportunity to go #CALSGlobal this spring break on a travel course to Edinburgh and London to learn more about the economic and political impacts of Brexit. She has always wanted to visit Europe for its historical landmarks, especially the United Kingdom. Mikayla has also previously participated on an agricultural business, production and trade travel course to Australia. With two study abroad experiences under her belt, Mikayla has come to realize how big the world really is and encourages fellow CALS students to study abroad by saying, “there is so much out there to see with only one life to live, so take advantage of the opportunities in front of you.” Studying abroad has helped broaden her horizons and also helped her look at situations from all angles, with an open mind. As a result of her increased global awareness, added International Agriculture as her second major and hopes to pursue a potential career in international affairs after graduation. She noted that her experiences abroad have a place on her resume and have always been a talking point during interviews and at career fairs. Alongside her international involvements, Mikayla has also been active in numerous clubs, including Cardinal Key Honor Society, Agricultural Education Club, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow and many others.  Mikayla will be completing her student teaching requirements this fall before graduating from Iowa State University in December.

Austin Pueschel

Major: Agricultural Business • Study Abroad Experiences: United Kingdom & Panama

Austin Pueschel, a senior at Iowa State University majoring in Agricultural Business with a minor in Animal Science, International Agriculture and Public Relations from Sturgis, Michigan looks forward to his new career with the National Swine Registry after graduation. During the interview and hiring process for his new position, Austin accredits his study abroad experience to help him stand out amongst other applicants. As a transfer student, Austin has participated in two travel course programs, the “UK Heritage Livestock” in Scotland and England and also the “Tropical Agricultural Production, International Business, and Trade" in Panama. Austin’s agricultural background in showing swine nationally, along with his interest in agricultural business, prompted him to apply for the two programs with emphasis on livestock and business. When applying for the Panama program, Austin was initially wait-listed, but was later accepted to the program and encourages all students to, “have a back-up if they are not initially accepted for a program of interest.” Austin values his new perspective on life from studying abroad as well as the “personal and professional networks he gained along the way.” Austin is also an active member in the Agricultural Business Club, Block and Bridle Club and Bacon Expo.



Where are CALS Faculty/Staff Traveling?



  • David Acker, CALS Admin, Uganda, project follow-up
  • Dean Adams, EEOB, France, participate in international conference
  • Dong Ahn, Animal Science, China, project collaboration; seminars
  • Rajeev Arora, Horticulture, Ireland, invited presentation at international conference
  • Lance Baumgard, Animal Science, Greece, project collaboration
  • Sylvia Cianzio, Agronomy, Belgium, research
  • Richard Cruse, Agronomy, Hungary, invited presentation
  • Karin Dorman, Statistics, Romania, invited presentation at international conference
  • Shui-Zhang Fei, Horticulture, China, Mexico, invited presentations at international conferences
  • Philip Gassman, CARD, Germany, invited presentation at international conference
  • Tingting Guo, Agronomy, China, seminar participation
  • Tracy Heath, EEOB, France, research
  • Jae-Kwang Kim, Statistics, South Korea
  • Stacy Lindshield, Anthropology, North Mariana Islands, research
  • Thomas Lubberstedt, Agronomy, Canada, participate in international conference
  • Ranjan Maitra, Statistics, Romania, invited presentation at international conference
  • William Meeker, Statistics, China, Sweden, teach short course, coordinate workshop
  • Bradley Miller, Agronomy, Netherlands, participate in international conference
  • Gail  Nonnecke, Horticulture, Uganda, lead student travel course
  • Lisa Ogler, Horticulture, Canada, participate in international conference
  • Walker Pett, Anthropology, France, participate in international conference
  • Warren Pierson, Agronomy, Australia, lead student travel course
  • Kevin Roe, NREM, Italy, project collaboration
  • Arti Singh, Agronomy, Australia, invited presentation at international conference
  • Asheesh Singh, Agronomy, Australia, invited presentation at international conference
  • Maria Valenzuela-Castro, EEOB, France, participate in international conference
  • Jonathan Wendel, EEOB, France, participate in international conference, present research
  • Jianming Yu, Agronomy, Belgium, China, invited presentations at international conferences

September, 2018

Thursday, September 6, 2018, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m. Feeding the World Seminar Series:  "EarthEmpower:  Start-up or Status Quo in International Development?" 1204 Kildee Hall

Thursday, September 13, 2018, 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.  ISU Study Abroad Fair, Great Hall, Memorial Union

Thursday, September 27, 2018, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m. Feeding the World Seminar Series, 13 Curtiss Hall

October, 2018

Monday, October 1, 2018  Application Deadline:  Semester Along the Nile:  Learning in Uganda

Tuesday, October 2, 2018 Scholarship Deadline:  Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship

Thursday, October 4, 2018, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m. Feeding the World Seminar Series:  "Research and Development Partnerships to Apply Genomics to Improve African Chickens" 1204 Kildee Hall

Thursday, October 11, 2018, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m.  Feeding the World Seminar Series:  "2018 Uganda Service Learners" 1204 Kildee Hall

Thursday, October 11, 2018, 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. CALS Study Abroad Fair, Kildee Pavilion, Kildee Hall

Thursday, October 25, 2018, 3:40 - 5:00 p.m. Feeding the World Seminar Series, 1204 Kildee Hall

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."