University Park, Pa. -- A series of thought-provoking, authoritative presentations about agricultural issues will be offered in the College of Agricultural Sciences Exhibits Building theatre during the 2011 edition of Penn State's Ag Progress Days, Aug. 16-18.
Located between East Ninth and East 10th streets near the top of Main Street on the Ag Progress Days site, the building will emphasize the diversity of teaching, research and extension programs offered by the college, focusing on energy; pest prediction and response; water quality and quantity; and dairy, livestock and veterinary science.
Experts in each of these areas will be on hand to answer questions and discuss how the college's research and extension missions help Pennsylvanians. Presentations in the building's theatre will feature such topics as stink-bug infestations, grass-fed vs. grain-fed beef, biotechnology in the barnyard, the value of dairy farms to Pennsylvania's local economies, protecting water supplies from natural-gas drilling, and the anatomy of a food recall, among others.
Full descriptions of the theatre presentations are available on the Web at http://agsci.psu.edu/apd/events/presentations.
The College Exhibits Building also will focus on educational opportunities and careers in agriculture. There are more job openings in agriculture and related fields each year than qualified graduates to fill them, according to Marianne Fivek, student recruitment coordinator.
She invited people to visit the College Exhibits Building to learn about College of Agricultural Sciences' academic programs in animal, biomedical, plant, environmental and natural resources, and social sciences, as well as agricultural business and biological engineering.
"Faculty and staff will be available to answer questions and provide information to prospective students and their families about the college's programs in the food, agricultural and natural resource sciences," she said. "We'll give them a good idea where an education in the agricultural sciences can take them.
"With 19 majors, 24 minors and about $1.8 million in scholarships available, the college has considerable diversity in its academic programs and many educational and life-changing opportunities to offer prospective students."
While at the College Exhibits Building, visitors also can stop by the college's Publications Distribution Center display to browse free and for-sale publications on topics ranging from agriculture and natural resources to community affairs and lawn care.
The schedule of theatre presentations:
Tuesday, Aug. 16
--10 a.m. "Attack of the Stink Bugs: What They Are, Where They Came From, and What to Do," by Steve Jacobs, senior extension associate in entomology.
--11 a.m. "Grass-fed vs. Grain-fed Beef: What's the Difference?" by Penn State Extension beef specialist John Comerford, associate professor of dairy and animal science.
--2 p.m. "Biotechnology in the Barnyard," by Terry Etherton, distinguished professor of animal nutrition and head of the Department of Dairy and Animal Science.
--2:30 p.m. "The Environmental Footprint of Large Beef Feedlots," by John Comerford, extension beef specialist and associate professor of dairy and animal science.
--3 p.m. "Can Low-Protein Feeding Reduce Ammonia Emissions from Dairy Manure?" by Alexander Hristov, associate professor of dairy nutrition.
Wednesday, Aug. 17
--10 a.m. Pa. House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee meeting
--1 p.m. "The Clean Water Act and What it Means for Pennsylvania's Producers," by Kristen Saacke Blunk, senior extension associate and director of the Penn State Ag and Environment Science and Policy Center, and Ross Pifer, director of the Penn State Agricultural Law Resource and Reference Center.
--2 p.m. "Cows, Cash, and Communities: The True Value of Dairy Farms," by Lisa Holden, associate professor of dairy science, and Rebecca White, senior project associate in dairy and animal science.
--2:30 p.m. "A Within-Herd Genetic Trend Demonstration Tool for Dairy Farms," by Chad Dechow, associate professor of dairy cattle genetics.
--3 p.m. "Efficient Strategies to Reduce Discomfort in Livestock and Poultry," by Ernest Hovingh, extension veterinarian, and Eva Wallner-Pendleton, poultry pathologist.
--3:30 p.m. "Is Antibiotic Resistance Increasing or Decreasing on our Farms?" by Penn State Extension veterinarian Robert Van Saun, professor of veterinary science, and Bhushan Jayarao, professor of veterinary science and director of Penn State's Animal Diagnostic Lab.
--4 p.m. "Protecting Water Supplies Near Marcellus Gas Drilling," by Bryan Swistock, extension water resources specialist.
Thursday, Aug. 18
--10 a.m. "Protecting Water Supplies Near Marcellus Gas Drilling," by Bryan Swistock, extension water resources specialist.
--11 a.m. "Attack of the Stink Bugs: What They Are, Where They Came From, and What to Do," by Steve Jacobs, senior extension associate in entomology.
--2 p.m. "Animal Welfare, Food Safety, and Quality: Contemporary Meat Processing," by Chris Raines, assistant professor of meat science and technology.
--2:30 p.m. "Food Safety Strategies to Reduce On-Farm Pathogens," by David Wolfgang, extension veterinarian, and Patricia Dunn, poultry pathologist.
--3 p.m. "Anatomy of a Recall -- What Does it Mean and Why Do They Happen?" by Chris Raines, assistant professor of meat science and technology.
Sponsored by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, Ag Progress Days is held at the Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center at Rock Springs, nine miles southwest of State College on Route 45. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 16; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Aug. 17; and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Aug. 18. Admission and parking are free.
For more information, visit the Ag Progress Days website at http://apd.psu.edu. Twitter users can find and share information about the event by using the hashtag #agprogress.