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Feature Story from 2013

February 21, 2013 - Filed Under: About Extension

MISSISSIPPI STATE – An experienced communications professional and administrator recently joined the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

Elizabeth Gregory North became the department head for MSU’s Office of Agricultural Communications February 1.

Ron McLaughlin
February 25, 2013 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A department head with the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine was selected to fill a national role with the American Association of Veterinary Clinicians.

The AAVC has elected Dr. Ron McLaughlin, head of the college’s Department of Clinical Sciences, to serve as president. In this role, McLaughlin works with the organization to enhance the quality of veterinary instruction in the United States.

February 26, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting

OXFORD – Northwest Mississippi parents, early-care and education providers and community members will be closer to educational materials when the Mississippi Child Care Resource and Referral Network opens new offices on March 5.

February 27, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Family Financial Management

GRENADA – As part of America Saves Week, which ends March 2, Mississippi State University Extension Service is spreading the saving message to promote automatic savings to help people reach their savings goals.

“America Saves Week is a great opportunity to help people in our community to set a goal, make a plan and save automatically,” said Rita Green, a financial management Extension agent based in Grenada County.

Stephen Meyers
February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Sweet Potatoes

PONTOTOC – A new sweet potato specialist has joined forces with Mississippi growers as they produce and promote one of the state’s favorite vegetable crops.

Stephen Meyers, a native of northern Indiana, is working with growers whose fields are largely centered in or around Calhoun and Chickasaw counties. He earned his bachelor’s degree in horticultural production and marketing, with a minor in weed science, from Purdue University. He received master’s and doctoral degrees in weed management from North Carolina State University.

Speaking at a Producer Advisory Council meeting in Verona on Feb. 21, 2013, Mississippi State University administrator George Hopper challenges agricultural producers to tell the state's land-grant university representatives what they need to succeed with their commodities. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Scott Corey)
February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Livestock, Forestry, Catfish

VERONA – When agricultural producers speak, Mississippi State University listens.

About 300 commodity producers, crop consultants and MSU representatives met on Feb. 21 at the North Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Verona for the annual Producer Advisory Council meeting. The meeting has been held for more than half a century to give farmers the opportunity to express agricultural needs to their land-grant institution.

Despite color differences between this Africanized honeybee (left) and a European honeybee, it requires scientific analysis to distinguish between the two. (Photo by USDA-Agricultural Research Service/Scott Bauer)
February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Beekeeping, Insects

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Beekeepers and those who work with bees are taking steps to prepare for the arrival of Africanized honeybees in the state.

Jeff Harris, apiculture specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said that although Africanized bees are more defensive than European bees, it is wrong to think of them as aggressive.

February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting

By Kaitlyn Byrne
MSU Office of Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Teen dating violence occurs more often than most people realize, but there are usually warning signs.

Cassandra Kirkland, family life specialist with Mississippi State University’s Extension Service, said one out of every three teenagers has experienced some form of abuse in a dating relationship.

Ryan Akers
February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Leadership

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Some people never stop looking for opportunities to advance their goals, especially those recruited for leadership classes.

Ryan Akers and Chance McDavid are two representatives of the Mississippi State University Extension Service who are taking part in the Leadership Mississippi program. Lynn Darling, director of the MSU Early Childhood Institute, is also in the 2013 class. After one meeting, they have set their sights on expanding their professional agendas across the state.

From left, Brenda Wright, owner of Heavenly Hearts Learning Center in Nesbit, joins Schmaya Miller, Kingston Jenkins and Ken'Narius Johnson to listen as LaLetrice Fletcher, field technical assistant with the Nurturing Homes Initiative, reads them a book. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Alicia Barnes)
February 28, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting

By Alicia Barnes
MSU School of Human Sciences

MISSISSIPPI STATE – To prepare children for kindergarten and beyond, child care providers rely on professional development programs to ensure best practices.

March 1, 2013 - Filed Under: Timber Harvest

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi State University is offering a free webinar to help those in the timber business understand the changes being made this summer to lumber measurements and standards.

Southern Pine Design Values will be offered free online March 18 from 9 a.m. to noon. Registration is free, and only those registered will receive a link to the webinar. Register at

Steve Demarais
March 1, 2013 - Filed Under: Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A Mississippi State University professor has been named Wildlife Conservationist of the Year by the Mississippi Wildlife Federation.

Steve Demarais, professor of wildlife ecology and management in MSU’s Forestry and Wildlife Research Center, received the honor at the federation’s Feb. 16 meeting.

March 4, 2013 - Filed Under: Pets

MISSISSIPPI STATE – When Dutch, a miniature dachshund, arrived at Mississippi State University’s Animal Health Center at the College of Veterinary Medicine, he was lucky to be alive.

“Most people would have put him to sleep, but I thought he had a chance,” said Dr. Robert Shamblin, Dutch’s owner and a veterinarian for over 40 years. “He wanted to live.”

Dutch was attacked by a coyote on his morning outing with Shamblin’s wife at their home outside of Tuscaloosa.

Kipp Brown, area meat goat agent in the Carroll County Extension Service office, led the small ruminant and swine commodity group's discussion during the Producer Advisory Council meeting Feb. 26 at Mississippi State University's Central Research and Extension Center. Nine commodity groups were represented at the meeting. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
March 5, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Livestock, Forestry

RAYMOND -- Producers and industry professionals from the central district gathered Feb. 26 to share needs and ideas with agents, specialists and researchers of Mississippi State University’s Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural, Forestry and Experiment Station.

The Central District Producer Advisory Council meeting was held in conjunction with Alcorn State University’s Extension Program and Hinds Community College.

March 5, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Commercial Horticulture, Fruit, Flower Gardens

GOODMAN -- A series of monthly field days highlighting sustainable agriculture practices continues March 15 in Goodman.

Fruit, vegetable and flower growers are invited to the Alliance for Sustainable Agricultural Production Demonstration Farm for information on mulching, irrigation and high tunnels.

Kyle Briscoe
March 5, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Leadership

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A Mississippi State University doctoral student recently received the inaugural Future Leaders in Science Award.

Kyle Briscoe of Liberty, Mo., is one of 12 graduate students in the nation to receive the award from the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America and Soil Science Society of America. He is studying agronomy at MSU.

March 6, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Livestock, Forestry

BILOXI -- Agricultural producers in the coastal region shared their needs and concerns during a Mississippi State University meeting Feb. 25.

The sixth annual Producer Advisory Council meeting was held at MSU’s Coastal Research and Extension Center.

Mississippi State University graduate student Kira Newcomb, left and technician Scott Bearden release female black ducks fitted with very high frequency radio transmitters on Feb. 3, 2011, at the Duck River Unit of Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge in New Johnsonville, Tenn., as part of her research on the ducks' declining population. (Submitted Photo)
March 6, 2013 - Filed Under: Wildlife, Waterfowl

MISSISSIPPI STATE – A Mississippi State University graduate student in the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture recently took second place in a competition at an international symposium.

Kira Newcomb won for the delivery of an oral presentation on black duck winter survival and habitat use at the sixth North American Duck Symposium and Workshop held Jan. 26-31 in Memphis, Tenn.

B.J. McClenton, Monroe County Extension coordinator (left), and Charlie Stokes, area Extension agent, unload water from a semi-trailer to distribute to tornado victims in Monroe County in 2011. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Scott Corey)
March 7, 2013 - Filed Under: Disaster Response, About Extension

ABERDEEN – B.J. McClenton’s appreciation of horses and livestock attracted him to a career with the Extension Service, but his desire to help people sealed the deal.

The Monroe County Extension coordinator and 4-H youth agent said the educational aspect of Extension appealed to his desire to work outside the classroom, especially with adults. That desire to help others led him to a brief job at the West Point Fire Department. He also became a certified EMT, a path that paid off in April 2011 when an F5 tornado hit Monroe County.

March 8, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture

STONEVILLE – Two Mississippi State University students placed in competitions at the Southern Branch of the American Society of Agronomy annual meeting February in Orlando, Fla.

MSU agronomy student Jennifer Corbin of Cleveland placed second in the graduate division for her oral presentation on crops. Corbin is a research associate in rice at MSU’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville.

Joshua White of Ackerman, a doctoral student in agronomy, placed second in the graduate student crops poster contest. White managers forage variety testing at MSU.


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