Northern Ag Network
Northern Ag Network
Northern Broadcasting System    Northern News Network    Northern Sports Network
Search This Site...
Search This Site...
MSU Ag Grad Student Selected to Meet with National Ag Leaders

MSU Ag Grad Student Selected to Meet with National Ag Leaders

3/7/2018 11:21:00 AM/Categories: Popular Posts, General News, Ag Conferences, People in Ag, Grains, National News, International

BOZEMAN -- A Montana State University graduate student who once picked rocks and cut thistle heads on her family's farm and now researches wheat genes recently returned from another round of meetings with national ag leaders.

Emma Jobson, 25, was one of 10 national graduate students and 20 undergraduates who were selected for a weeklong trip to Washington, D.C., through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Student Diversity Program. She was the only student from Montana selected to attend. Last year, Jobson participated in a similar program offered by the Agricultural Tri-Societies.

"I would encourage other graduate students to apply for those kind of programs," Jobson said. "It's good to see science beyond the research and how it's applied to policies."

Jobson -- who also applied for and was selected to speak March 13 at the Nebraska Plant Breeding Symposium in Lincoln -- is working toward her Ph.D. in plant genetics, hoping that her work will benefit farmers raising wheat under increasingly arid conditions.

Jobson was chosen for the USDA forum based on an essay she wrote and a letter of recommendation from professor Mike Giroux, her adviser and interim head of the Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology in MSU's College of Agriculture. Her essay addressed the significant challenges of feeding the planet’s more than 10 billion people with depleted resources.

"Emma stands out because of her dedication to global food security and taking advantage of opportunities to expand her network and professional development on a national scale," Giroux said. “I know those traits will serve her well in the future.”

The 30 students who were selected for the February forum came from land-grant universities like MSU, Hispanic-serving institutions and non-land-grant colleges of agriculture. While in Washington, D.C., they learned about contemporary agribusiness, scientific research and agricultural policy. They participated in a USDA briefing and discussed career opportunities with agriculture leaders in academia, government and industry.

Besides meeting current ag leaders and mingling with future ag leaders, Jobson met with the director of the USDA program that funds her research in Giroux's laboratory. Jobson's research is currently funded by a $244,618 grant titled "Wheat Yield and Quality Improvement via Testing of New Semi-Dwarf Alleles." The USDA grant was made possible by preliminary results obtained with funding provided by the Montana Wheat and Barley Committee.

During her final two days in Washington, D.C., Jobson attended the USDA's largest annual meeting, the Agricultural Outlook Forum.

"These students are the next generation of agriculture, and it is important for the USDA to support their training as future agriculture professionals," USDA Chief Economist Robert Johansson said in a press release before the event.

Jobson -- whose ancestors farmed in Sweden and continued farming after immigrating to the United States -- grew up on a corn and soybean farm near Fort Collins, Colorado. Her mother and uncle also manage farms in Colorado, Nebraska and Iowa.

Because of that background and the fact that she conducts research funded by the USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture, she was already familiar with many areas of agriculture, Jobson said. The USDA program and forum exposed her to commodities and rural development, however. Speakers also discussed food safety, government regulations, the need for higher yields and the challenges of developing crops to feed a growing population.

"I think it's really been eye opening in regard to how research needs to fit into policies and the way we describe and present our research. It needs to be accessible and informative to a broader public," Jobson said. "There are a lot of misconceptions. It's important that the research and scientists doing the research are able to accurately convey what the science is behind the reasoning." 


Leave a comment

Add comment


Recent Ag News

Wyoming Ranchers Win Right to Be Heard to Defend Against Grizzly Bears Predation

3/20/2018 9:39:00 AM
DENVER, CO. Today, a federal judge agreed that Wyoming ranchers add an important voice to the discussion over how to deal with the rebounded grizzly bear population around Yellowstone National Park. For decades, ranchers such as Charles C. Price and Mary E. Thoman have dealt with the deadly and dangerous effects of the growing grizzly bear population in their backyards but will finally be able to join with the court in ensuring all parties know the true effects of the grizzly bear. Mr. Price and Ms. Thoman, and their fellow ranchers lose countless numbers of livestock due to grizzly bear kills every year. Mr. Price and other ranchers in the Upper Green River Valley lost 71 cattle to confirmed grizzly bear kills in 2017 alone. Ms. Thoman and her family have not only lost countless sheep to grizzly bear kills, but also one of the family’s shepherds was mauled by a female grizzly bear in 2010. Those trying to make an honest living in rural western Wyoming are forced to expend a vast amount of money to try to protect themselves, their employees, and their livelihoods from the unrestrained predation by the ever-growing grizzly bear population. >> Read More
Article rating: No rating

NCBA Announces 2018 Stockmanship and Stewardship Events

3/20/2018 4:56:00 AM
Stockmanship and Stewardship events provide beef and dairy producers with hands-on training, cattle handling demonstrations, beef quality assurance (BQA) certifications and more. >> Read More
Article rating: No rating

Senate Ag Committee Recognizes MT FFA President

3/19/2018 10:51:00 AM
March is Women's History Month, and the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry is celebrating women in agriculture. Today the committee recognized Sheridan Johnson, a 4th generation wheat farmer from Conrad, Montana - and Montana FFA Association president. >> Read More
Article rating: No rating

USCA Petition for Rulemaking on "Fake Meat" Under Consideration

3/16/2018 1:36:00 PM
(WASHINGTON) – The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has posted for public comment the United States Cattlemen’s Association’s (USCA) petition for rulemaking on the definitions of “beef” and “meat”. The deadline for letters of support is April 10th. >> Read More
Article rating: No rating

Montana Ranchers to Support USCA Truthful Beef Labeling

3/16/2018 1:29:00 PM
The United States Cattlemen’s Association’s (USCA) efforts on truthful beef labeling will be supported this month with multiple fundraising events being organized by producers across the state on Montana. >> Read More
Article rating: No rating

Find Articles by Date

«March 2018»