Feature Story from 2008
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University forestry students are combining the modern technology of computer laptops and flash drives with traditional saws, mallets and squares to learn the time-honored craft of timber framing.
Students who took the “Wood in Design and Engineering” course offered this spring experienced a hands-on laboratory in this art.
Once a popular construction method, the craft of timber framing dates back to 6220 B.C. In the early 1900s, Sears and similar retailers sold thousands of timber frame homes through mail-order catalogs.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Fox News Channel personality Steve Doocy will be the featured guest Oct. 12 for a department of food science, nutrition and health promotion fundraiser at Mississippi State.
Taking place at the Barnes & Noble at Mississippi State Bookstore, the 11 a.m.-2 p.m. program begins with a reception featuring various creative appetizers by Chef Roland Parny, university coordinator of culinary research and development. The attendance fee is $75.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi’s 4-H program will take part in the organization’s first National Youth Science Day on Oct. 11 at the Mississippi Trade Mart during the State Fair in Jackson.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi drivers know to look out year-round for deer trying to cross roads, but fall brings another driving challenge when farm machinery joins the vehicles on the road.
Herb Willcutt, agricultural engineer with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the state averages 125 collisions a year involving motorists and farm machinery.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A physically active Greenwood woman is working from a wheelchair today rather than on horseback a year into her battle with West Nile virus that left her with polio-like symptoms and partial paralysis.
Leann Hines contracted the virus in August 2007 and came down with West Nile virus polio syndrome, which caused asymmetrical paralysis.
“I was almost totally paralyzed,” Hines said. “If not for a really good neurologist in Jackson, I probably would not have survived.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Researchers may have found the secret to controlling a tiny insect that robs Mississippi landowners of an estimated 12 million cubic feet of pine forest each year.
Though only an eighth of an inch long, the Southern pine beetle is a big pest and difficult to contain. Scientists at Mississippi State University's Forest and Wildlife Research Center, along with colleagues at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Harvard and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service, have made a breakthrough with the discovery of an antibiotic-producing bacterium.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Veterinarian and ABC-TV “Good Morning America” contributor Dr. Marty Becker will bring his popular brand of wit and animal wisdom to Mississippi State University as keynote speaker for the College of Veterinary Medicine’s first ever Nestlé-Purina Human-Animal Bond Lecture Series Oct. 20-24.
"We are thrilled to have Dr. Becker as our keynote speaker,” said Dr. Jennifer Burgess, chair of the lecture series. “We have put together a week-long event that has appeal for anyone who has pets or whose life is touched by animals on farms, at zoos or in the wild.”
By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Young people who desire a career in animal health but do not want to pursue a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree now have an alternative at Mississippi State University.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi is joining other states in an effort to bring attention to renovation safety concerns during National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, Oct. 19-25.
Jane Clary, Mississippi State University’s Extension Service health specialist, said the Mississippi State Department of Health reports that hundreds of children are poisoned each year by lead, which can cause a variety of health problems, including brain damage and even death.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Daniel Rivera joined the Mississippi State University team that supports the state’s livestock industry when he accepted a position in September with the MSU Extension Service.
Rivera is the Extension livestock specialist for the southwest district and works from the Central Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Raymond. He is a member of MSU’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences.
By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University professor Ed Martin spent nearly 40 years teaching landscape architecture students to use plants to create great outdoor spaces, and he felt others should understand this principle, too.
Soon after arriving at MSU in 1956, Martin began a partnership with the Garden Clubs of Mississippi to educate people about the function of the landscape. He started a design seminar open to the public.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – The North Mississippi Research and Extension Center will have new leadership beginning Nov. 1 from a longtime Mississippi State University agricultural economist.
Melissa Mixon, interim director of MSU’s Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, announced on Oct. 9 that Cary “Bill” Herndon will assume the post, pending College Board approval.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippians know to call the Extension Service with questions about insect pests, row crops or family finances, and thousands turn to the same source for training on a variety of other topics.
One topic that has become popular is all-terrain vehicle safety. Many Mississippians are injured and some killed each year in accidents involving ATVs. In late October, two 11-year-old girls died in an ATV accident in DeSoto County, highlighting the need for training in how to safely operate these vehicles.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Allergy season can be year-round for many pets, and solutions can be harder to find for small animals than for their human friends.
“With the exception of allergies to fleas and certain foods, people cannot protect their pets from many of the environmental causes of allergic reactions, such as pollens and house dust mites,” said Dr. Juli Gunter, veterinary dermatologist with Mississippi State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. “We often find ways to manage, not cure, their allergic reactions.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The Piney Woods Heritage Festival will return Nov. 14 and 15 to the Mississippi State University Crosby Arboretum in Picayune for the first time since Hurricane Katrina.
Relive the Piney Woods region’s early days along the arboretum’s trails with exhibits and demonstrations of traditional blacksmithing, storytelling, woodcarving, spinning, quilting, doll making, Native American artistry, basketry and a host of other skills.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Individuals involved with tourism development in their communities or those just getting started can learn how to bolster their efforts by attending the Alabama-Mississippi Rural Tourism Conference Oct. 28-29 at the Holiday Inn in Columbus.
The conference is part of a continuing partnership among the Mississippi State University Extension Service, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and the Tennessee Tombigbee Tourism Association to promote tourism development in Alabama and Mississippi.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Mississippi scientist and author widely recognized for advancing the study of how insects, spiders, ticks and mites impact human health has joined the faculty of Mississippi State University as associate Extension professor.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A small insect pest that drove many cotton farmers nearly to desperation in its heyday is now in desperate straits of its own.
For most of the summer, the state's extensive trap network found only one boll weevil, which was in a Tunica County trap on June 11. Scouts added two more weevils to the 2008 collection in mid-October from traps in Chickasaw County.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University will auction about 40 horses, including some of the last foals of Triple-Crown descendant Minister Slew, on Nov. 15 to raise money to support MSU’s equine research.
The sale at the Mississippi Horse Park, which is located on Poorhouse Road south of Starkville, will begin at 1 p.m. after a sponsored lunch for sale participants. Buyers can begin viewing stock at 10 a.m., and horses under saddle will be displayed between 10:30 and 11 a.m.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Once this year’s crop is out of the fields, cotton producers can turn their attention to 2009 with a two-day short course in December.
The Mississippi State University Extension Service is offering a cotton short course Dec. 1-2 on campus in the Bost Extension Building. The annual short course will provide information about cotton production with the goal of making growers more productive and profitable.