Feature Story from 2003
By Laura Whelan
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While some people are preparing for a biological crisis with duct tape and plastic, Mississippi State University representatives are considering the animals in the food supply and the veterinarians who examine them.
JACKSON -- Mississippi manufacturers, agricultural producers and economic developers can learn ways to reduce dependence on fossil fuels during a March 25 and 26 conference.
The Mississippi Renewable Energy Conference will address how the use of alternative fuels can create jobs and reduce the environmental impact of energy production and use.
Mississippi State University's Extension Service and the Mississippi Biomass Council are sponsoring the conference at the Clarion Hotel in Jackson.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Farmers trying to avoid possible rising nitrogen costs by applying the fertilizer to fields before the new planting season may harm their wallet and the environment.
Most nitrogen applied to fields weeks before planting will be lost to the environment. Not only will it have to be reapplied, adding cost to the producer, but it can have negative effects on nearby water quality.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The director of a Mississippi State University institute has been named to a U.S. Department of Agriculture task force.
Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman appointed Alan Wood, director of the Life Sciences and Biotechnology Institute, to the eight-member Research, Education and Economics Task Force. The group is comprised of scientists from a variety of disciplines, including medicine, agriculture and biotechnology.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A free, half-day quail management workshop will teach participants ways to improve bobwhite quail habitat on rural property.
The March 29 workshop will take place from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Environmental Education Center at the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in south Oktibbeha County. Interested participants are encouraged to register by March 26. Lunch will be provided to those who preregister.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Students at Mississippi State University's College of Veterinary Medicine will hold their 19th annual open house April 4 and 5 at the Wise Center, located on the south side of campus off Spring Street.
The theme of the open house is "A whole world of opportunities." 2003 marks the 29th year anniversary of the establishment of the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine by the Mississippi Legislature.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's history is closely tied to the land -- from the era when flatboats moved the cotton harvest to the Gulf of Mexico to the current technology revolution in agriculture.
Preserving the stories of the people and events that have shaped the state's rural life is the goal of a new program at Mississippi State University.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- With the threat of war looming and thousands of Mississippians being called to military duty, experts encourage families to plan ahead for their financial obligations during a deployment.
When making financial preparations, consider current salary, lifestyle and financial responsibilities.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The nation's first specific-pathogen-free fish hatchery is up and running at Mississippi State University.
Located adjacent to and operated by MSU's College of Veterinary Medicine, the 4,500-square-foot aquatic hatchery is a state-of-the-art facility for rearing catfish and other species in a disease-free environment.
By Laura Whelan
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- In the volatile climate of the world today, even veterinarians are involved in the war against terrorism.
Dr. Roger Easley, professor of veterinary pathology at the College of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State University and a retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force, defined bioterrorism as "a hostile terrorist attack with a biological agent."
"Biological weapons are intended to cause physical harm, fear, panic, and disruption of economics and commerce," he said.
By Keryn Page
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While the excessive rain in recent months has some people feeling down, it means good things for communities, industries and agriculture in the South.
In fact, a Mississippi State University Extension Service agricultural engineer says there will never be too much rain, at least in terms of the area's underground water supply.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Researchers used the value Americans and Europeans placed on a chocolate chip cookie to determine consumer attitudes towards genetically modified foods.
The research, conducted jointly by Mississippi State University and the University of Reading, England, found that Americans on average are less concerned about consuming genetically modified foods than their European counterparts.
By Laura Whelan
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Recent high-profile instances of toxic mold found in homes have raised fear in many Mississippians, but any mold growth in the home should be seen as a possible health threat.
"All molds have the potential to cause health problems," said Beth Miller, assistant professor of human sciences in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at Mississippi State University. "They produce allergens, irritants and in some cases, potentially toxic substances.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University and the state's community colleges are teaming up to help ensure the presence of health-care providers throughout the state in the years to come.
As Mississippi approaches a critical need for medical professionals, MSU is hosting an intense summer program that aims to entice high school juniors into a career as family medicine physicians. A related program offered at Hinds, Meridian and the Mississippi Gulf Coast community colleges will target future nurses and allied health professionals.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Parenting education programs can teach parents one very valuable lesson: how to help their children succeed academically.
Mississippi State University Extension Service specialists hold these programs in various counties in support of President George Bush's "No Child Left Behind" initiative. They offer parents training and information to better support and care for their children.
Attala County Extension director Karen Benson said meeting the needs of Mississippi's children is the goal of parenting education programs.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Five stallions at Mississippi State University including a grandson of Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew stand ready to provide a mutually beneficial service to the university and to Mississippi's equine industry.
"This is a win-win situation for MSU and for the horse breeders of this state," said Peter Ryan, assistant professor of animal and dairy sciences. "These stallions help our research and teaching program as we study equine reproduction. The industry will benefit from top-quality stallions available for reasonable fees."
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Cotton grown under tanning bed lights may lead to the development of new varieties that tolerate increased ultraviolet radiation.
Raja Reddy, a research professor of plant and soil sciences with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment at Mississippi State University, is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture on two projects dealing with the depletion of the Earth's ozone layer.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi manufacturers can learn ways to reduce waste and increase productivity in their plants and tour lean manufacturing companies during an April 22 through 24 conference in Starkville.
The Mississippi State University Extension Service and Forest Products Department are sponsoring the 2003 Southern Region Lean Manufacturing Conference. The theme of the conference is "Reduce Waste, Increase Productivity." Registration fees are $325 through April 11, and $350 after that date.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A cotton grower's best defense against insect pests may be a long memory.
Mike Williams, entomologist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, has monitored insect battles for many years across the Cotton Belt and especially in Mississippi. He is familiar with the weapons in growers' arsenals: transgenic cotton, insecticides, application timing and alternative crops. But he believes the most important weapon may be a grower's memory of past challenges in certain fields.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Parents can enable their children to cope better with conflict and tragedy in the world by talking openly and honestly, and remembering that children crave security particularly in troubling times.
Child development experts recommend parents take into consideration a number of factors, including age, maturity and interest level, and exposure to news media, when talking to their children about war, violence and terrorism.
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