Community

New Missouri Transect Newsletter!

Friday, May 19, 2017

The Missouri EPSCoR Newsletter is now out.  You can read it online here:

Read both issues of The Transect here.

If you want a hard copy, please send a request at missouriepscor [at] missouri [dot] edu (subject: The%20Transect%20newsletter) .

Soil Health Survey Training in Columbia - March 3, 2016

Friday, February 19, 2016

MO DIRT and Missouri EPSCoR want to invite you to participate in a training in Columbia to conduct soil health surveys. You can choose to attend the morning session or the afternoon session.
 
When: Thursday, March 3rd. Morning session 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Afternoon session 1:00 to 4:00 pm.
Where: Room 322 Tucker Hall Building. GPS address: University of Missouri, Division of Biological Sciences, Tucker Hall, Columbia, MO 65211

Parking: See the map. There are two options for parking:

  1. Visitor parking lot west of the Tucker Hall building. It has parking meters that cost $1 per hour up to 8 hours. It is close to the Tucker Hall building but there is no guarantee that you will find a spot.
  2. Virginia avenue parking garage south of the Tucker Hall building, which is a 5 minute walk from the building. You will be mailed a day pass to park anywhere in the garage. Send me your mailing address if you need the day pass.

Who: Adults and teenagers (educational leaders, teachers, students, landowners, etc.) interested in soil science.
What to bring: Paper, pen, positive energy, and a camera (optional). We will be outside for a short period of time to show you the setup of a survey site, so be prepared for the cold weather.
What you will get: Training on how to set up and conduct soil health surveys, and if you decide to join the project, you will receive a backpack with a soil kit, and a manual.
Cost: Free
 
Contact Sandra Arango-Caro at the Danforth Center (SArango-Caro [at] danforthcenter [dot] org?subject=MO%20DIRT%3A%20Soil%20Health%20Survey%20Training" rel="noreferrer">SArango-Caro [at] danforthcenter [dot] org) if you are interested in participating.  If you cannot attend this training, we will be offering training across the state in the future. Please also share this information with others.
We hope you can join us, as well as your students and colleagues!
 
Read below for an introduction to MO DIRT, Missouri Transect, and soil health surveys:

MO DIRT - Missourians Doing Impact Research Together, has two main goals: (1) to further educate citizens on the societal importance of healthy soils and (2) to recruit as many individuals as possible to examine the current properties of our state soils and how these are being influenced by land use and management, as well as microclimate and climate change (see attached brochure). This project is funded by the National Science Foundation under the federal EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) initiative. Called “The Missouri Transect,” this working group of scientists, educators and community advocates will be generating data and models to better understand how climate influences agricultural and native plant systems, and how Missouri communities are affected and respond to this phenomenon over the course of five years. The leading institution for The Missouri Transect is the University of Missouri-Columbia, which is collaborating with eight other academic institutions including the Donald Danforth Plant Center, the Saint Louis Science Center, Saint Louis University, Lincoln University, Washington University, Missouri University of Science and Technology, and the University of Missouri at Kansas City and St. Louis.
 
Within MO DIRT we have a program on soil health surveys. This surveys are conducted by teenagers and adults, working as individuals or in small teams, in study sites of their choosing representative of natural systems (prairie, forest, woodland) or agricultural system (grassland, crop fields, animal fields). Urban or suburban gardens are not included. The sites are monitored monthly from February to November over the course of several years. You can join the soil surveys at any time. The data generated from the soil surveys include measurements of physical, chemical, and biological indicators of soil health. These data will provide baseline information to be shared through an open access on-line website. This electronic tool will allow participants to learn about data being deposited by others across the state, and how the data will be validated for use by scientists, as well as teachers for classroom learning, all for the endpoint of better tracking of how soil health is being affected across the state for long term prospects.
 
During the training, volunteer citizens (teachers, high school students, land owners, youth groups, etc.) will learn about soil science and how to monitor soil health by measuring soil physical, chemical, and biological indicators. Participants will also learn about data collection and data management. If you are a teacher, take into consideration that your high school students can attend the training to, even if you cannot attend.

The training last 3 hours and is free. If you decide to join the soil surveys project you will receive a manual and a soil kit.

2016 LSSP Symposium confirms dates and speakers

Friday, September 25, 2015

The Life Sciences and Soceity Program at the University of Missouri has announced three confirmed speakers for the upcoming 2016 LSSP Symposium. 

  • Richard Alley is climate scientist from Penn State University. He is a member of the AAAS What We Know panel on climate change, and has a long history of bringing his message the general public.
  • Marcia McNutt is former head of the US Geological Survey, current Editor-in-Chief of Science, and incoming President of the National Academy of Sciences.
  • Naomi Oreskes is a historian of science from Harvard University who focuses on scientific consensus. She has written about the consensus on climate change, but is most well-known for her book Merchants of Doubt, on which the recent film was based.

Watch a TED talk by Dr. Oreskes given in New York, NY in 2014:

The Symposium will be held March 18 & 19, 2016, and focuses on climate change and the Anthropocene.  There will be many events leading up to the symposium.  Stay tuned for more news and annoucements!

Missouri Transect Annual Meeting

Event date(s): Wednesday, September 14, 2016 to Thursday, September 15, 2016
Location: Havener Center, Missouri S&T, Rolla


The second Missouri Transect Annual Meeting is a unique opportunity to collaborate with Missouri Transect researchers from across Missouri and to learn about research and education projects that are enhancing Missouri’s research and development infrastructure, capacity, and competitiveness.  Graduate and undergraduate students who attend will have the opoortunity to submit and present a poster on their research. Their lodging expenses may qualify to be covered by Missouri EPSCoR. The meeting website with online registration is coming soon.

Save the Date:

Wednesday & Thursday, September 14 & 15

Havener Center, Missouri University of Science & Technology, Rolla, Missouri

Soil Health Survey Training in Columbia

Event date(s): Thursday, March 3, 2016
Location: Room 322, Tucker Hall, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211


You are invited to participate in the next MO DIRT* training to conduct soil health surveys in Columbia. You can choose to attend the morning session or the afternoon session.
 
When: Thursday, March 3rd. Morning session 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Afternoon session 1-4 pm.
Where: Room 322 Tucker Hall Building. GPS address: University of Missouri, Division of Biological Sciences, 105 Tucker Hall, Columbia, MO 65211

Parking: There are two options for parking:

  1. Visitor parking lot west of the Tucker Hall building. It has parking meters that cost $1 per hour up to 8 hours. It is close to the Tucker Hall building but there is no guarantee that you will find a spot.
  2. Virginia avenue parking garage south of the Tucker Hall building, which is a 5 minute walk from the building. You will be mailed a day pass to park anywhere in the garage. Send me your mailing address if you need the day pass.

Who: Adults and teenagers (educational leaders, teachers, students, landowners, etc.) interested in soil science.
What to bring: Paper, pen, positive energy, and a camera (optional). We will be outside for a short period of time to show you the setup of a survey site, so be prepared for the cold weather.
What you will get: Training on how to set up and conduct soil health surveys, and if you decide to join the project, you will receive a backpack with a soil kit, and a manual.
Cost: Free
 
Contact Sandra Arango-Caro at the Danforth Center (SArango-Caro [at] danforthcenter [dot] org" rel="noreferrer">SArango-Caro [at] danforthcenter [dot] org) if you are interested in participating.  If you cannot attend this training, we will be offering training across the state in the future. Please also share this information with others.
We hope you can join us, as well as your students and colleagues!

*MO DIRT - Missourians Doing Impact Research Together, has two main goals: (1) to further educate citizens on the societal importance of healthy soils and (2) to recruit as many individuals as possible to examine the current properties of our state soils and how these are being influenced by land use and management, as well as microclimate and climate change (see attached brochure). This project is funded by the National Science Foundation under the federal EPSCoR (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) initiative. Called “The Missouri Transect,” this working group of scientists, educators and community advocates will be generating data and models to better understand how climate influences agricultural and native plant systems, and how Missouri communities are affected and respond to this phenomenon over the course of five years. The leading institution for The Missouri Transect is the University of Missouri-Columbia, which is collaborating with eight other academic institutions including the Donald Danforth Plant Center, the Saint Louis Science Center, Saint Louis University, Lincoln University, Washington University, Missouri University of Science and Technology, and the University of Missouri at Kansas City and St. Louis.
 
Within MO DIRT we have a program on soil health surveys. This surveys are conducted by teenagers and adults, working as individuals or in small teams, in study sites of their choosing representative of natural systems (prairie, forest, woodland) or agricultural system (grassland, crop fields, animal fields). Urban or suburban gardens are not included. The sites are monitored monthly from February to November over the course of several years. You can join the soil surveys at any time. The data generated from the soil surveys include measurements of physical, chemical, and biological indicators of soil health. These data will provide baseline information to be shared through an open access on-line website. This electronic tool will allow participants to learn about data being deposited by others across the state, and how the data will be validated for use by scientists, as well as teachers for classroom learning, all for the endpoint of better tracking of how soil health is being affected across the state for long term prospects.

Strategic Planning Meeting Held on August 20

Event date(s): Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Location: Bradford Research Center


As an awardee of the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), Missouri is required by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to conduct Strategic Planning meeting within 90 days of the award date (August 1, 2014). Investigators, team leads, project administration and NSF Program Officers came together for a strategic planning meeting on August 20, 2014.

The strategic planning meeting was held at the Bradford Research Center and facilitated by an independent external facilitator, Dr. Carl Batt, a Liberty Hyde Professor in the Department of Food at Cornell University. There were approximately 50 participants. Researchers traveled from Kansas City, St. Louis, Jefferson City, Rolla and around Columbia to attend the meeting. External participants came in from California, New York, and Washington, D.C.

 
                                 
Researchers traveled from around the state to collaborate on the Missouri Transect strategic plan at the Bradford Research Center in Columbia
                                Education Team creating timelines and accomplishments with collaboration through Skype

The morning opened with an introduction and welcome from Dr. John Walker, the Project Director and Principal Investigator of Missouri EPSCoR. Dr. Kelvin Chu, Program Officer at NSF EPSCoR, outlined the expectations from NSF for the strategic plan. Each team lead gave short 5 to 10-minute presentations about their team’s research question, goals, and investigators.

After a short break, participants split off into their research teams. They drafted the expected accomplishments by the end of the five-year program, determined timelines for their activities in research and outreach and created a poster for further discussion.

Everyone reconvened and Dr. Chris Elsik, the Cyberinfrastructure (CI) team lead, led a discussion about integrating CI capabilities with each team’s research and database needs.

After the discussion, researchers split up to visit each poster and discuss timelines and accomplishments with other teams. They noted on other teams’ accomplishments posters possible individual or team collaborations to achieve each accomplishment

Participants visited other teams’ posters to discuss how the timelines and accomplishments fit into the Missouri Transect project

The full group reconvened for a presentation from the external evaluator about the EPSCoR evaluation process. Then the Statewide Committee Chair, Dr. Keith Gary spoke to the group about the role of the Statewide Committee and the Academic and CI subcommittees, the Missouri Science & Technology plan, and how to build commercialization partners and increasing communication with the State government. The meeting closed with comments from Dr. Walker.