The end of the semester is always busy for students, faculty and staff. This year was no exception. However, for many the crazy schedule did not stop after classes ended, so we wanted to take a minute to share a couple exciting things people have done the last couple of weeks.
China Study Away
Shortly after graduation Dr. Melissa Remley travelled to China with five students. For the first five days they worked with researchers and
students at the Ningxia Forestry Institute (a botanical garden/plant research center). Remley said the group visited the institute’s Laboratory for Seedling Bioengineering, germplasm resource garden and field experiments. The institute produces a lot of wolfberries (i.e. gogi berries) and they harvest the berries and young shoots for tea and edible greens. They also grow many other plants, including grapes, and produce wine.
Remley said the best part of the trip was getting to know the researchers and students, bonding over a bon fire and karaoke, making traditional Chinese dumplings and having cultural exchange presentations. “We are still constantly communicating with our friends in China through WeChat (China’s version of Facebook),” Remley said.
The last week of the trip the group was in Beijing. They spent 3 days touring some historical sites, such as the Great Wall, Forbidden City and Summer Palace. The timing of the trip allowed them to attend an MSU alumni event in Beijing. Remley said they also took in a Kung Fu Show and Chinese Acrobatic Show, which were both amazing.
Brazil Study Away
On May 17 students from UniCesumar University in Maringá – PR, Brazil, arrived at Missouri State to spend a week learning about agriculture in Missouri. The group’s schedule included: listening to lectures from School of Agriculture faculty; observing animal science demonstrations at the Darr Center; touring the Fruit Experiment Station, an ADM facility, and the Monsanto research facility in St. Louis; and visiting the Arch.
At the end of the week when the Brazilian students departed, so did eight Missouri State students and two faculty members, Samantha Warner and Mike Klem. Warner said the unique design of the Brazilian study away program allows students from UniCesumar and Missouri State to build relationships and learn about agriculture and culture in both countries.
In Brazil, the schedule included listening to lectures about agriculture in Brazil; touring the University’s farm, a biodiesel facility and an agriculture cooperative; experiencing Brazilian coffee; and visiting Iguaçu Falls. Warner said watching students fall in love with the Brazilian people, culture and landscape was the best part of the trip.
Transfer Student Practicum
June 4-6 we held our second transfer student practicum. The practicum is funded by a capacity building grant for non-land grant colleges through the USDA. The purpose of the program is to expose community college students to opportunities for continuing their education in the agricultural sciences through a combination of lectures, hands-on activities and exposure to current research projects. This year 12 students and one advisor from OTC attended.
Other events we’ve hosted at the Bond Center recently include:
- Missouri FFA LEAD – 250 high school students participated
- MFA, Inc. Southwest Missouri Sales Training Workshop
- Darr Family Foundation Grant Award Presentation
And the summer has just begun! Stay tuned for more updates on the exciting things our students, faculty and staff are doing on their summer break.