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You are here:Home / Newsroom / Newsletters / NIFA Updates / NIFA Update - July 11, 2012

NIFA Update — July 11, 2012

NIFA Update, from the Office of the Director, is a biweekly newsletter for research, education, and Extension partners at land-grant universities and other cooperating institutions.


  • 4-H Headquarters Extends “This is MY Agriculture” Photo Contest
  • NIFA in the News
  • NIFA Lists Open Requests for Grant Applications



  • Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson
  • Statement from Agriculture Secretary Vilsack on the Codex Alimentarius Commission's Adoption of Standards for the Veterinary Drug Ractopamine
  • Obama Administration Announces New Investments to Advance Biofuels Industry and Enhance America's Energy Security 
  • Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Visits OSU, Highlights Cancer-Fighting Research and 150 Years of Land-Grant University Partnerships
  • UPDATE: Federal Partners Continue to Support State and Local Partners as they Fight Wildfires 
  • Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on U.S. Senate Approval of the Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act


  • UNL Announces Interim Dean/Director
  • National Job Bank Expands Services


  • Dorsey Receives 2012 Alumnus Award
  • NIFA Grant Recipient Receives Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship

  • Next issue of NIFA Update is July 25

4-H Headquarters Extends “This is MY Agriculture” Photo Contest

The 4-H National Headquarters photo contest “This is My Agriculture” deadline is extended to July 31, 2012. 4-H members, volunteers, alumni, and staff are invited to enter the contest in celebration of USDA’s 150th Anniversary. For more information and to submit an entry, visit the “This is MY Agriculture” photo contest website.

NIFA in the News


NIFA Lists Open Requests for Grant Applications

Funding Opportunity

Closing Date


Biomass Research and Development Initiative (BRDI)

See solicitation deadlines.

Carmela Bailey

Rangeland Research Program (RRP)

July 30, 2012

James P. Dobrowolski

Aligning and Elevating University-Based Low-Income Nutrition Education: Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed)

August 1, 2012

Helen Chipman

Critical Agricultural Materials

August 3, 2012

Carmela Bailey

Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate and Postgraduate Fellowship (NNF) Grants Program

August 15, 2012

Ray A. Ali

Higher Education Multicultural Scholars Program (MSP)

August 29, 2012

Ray A. Ali

Small Business Innovation Research: Biofuels and Biobased Products

September 6, 2012

Ray A. Ali

Small Business Innovation Research Program: Phase I

September 6, 2012

William Goldner

Small Business Innovation Research: Food Science and Nutrition September 6, 2012 Jodi Williams
Small Business Innovation Research Program: Phase I September 6, 2012 Charles F. Cleland
Small Business Innovation Research: Small and Mid-Size Farms September 6, 2012 Charles F. Cleland
Small Business Innovation Research: Air, Water, and Soils September 6, 2012 Mary Ann Rozum
Small Business Innovation Research: Animal Production and Protection September 6, 2012 Adele Turzillo
Small Business Innovation Research: Aquaculture September 6, 2012 Gary Jensen
Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Dual Purpose with Dual Benefit: Research in Biomedicine and Agriculture Using Agriculturally Important Domestic Species September 20, 2012 Mark A. Mirando
Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Food Safety November 14, 2012 Jeanette Thurston


NIFA advertises all of its funding opportunities through “Find Grant Opportunities” on the website. This site is searchable and contains summary information on all federal funding opportunities with links to the full announcements. Users can search announcements by topic, funding agency, and date, as well as subscribe to an email notification service based on these parameters.


Obama Administration Announces New Investments to Advance Biofuels Industry and Enhance America's Energy Security

WASHINGTON, July 2 – As part of the Obama Administration's commitment to deploying every available source of American energy and reducing our reliance on imported oil, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, and Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced new funding available to pursue new innovations in biofuels technologies, increase production of U.S. biofuels, and strengthen American energy security. USDA, the Navy, and the Department of Energy are announcing $30 million in federal funding to match private investments in commercial-scale advanced drop-in biofuels. The Energy Department is also announcing a total of $32 million in new investments for earlier stage research that will continue to drive technological breakthroughs and additional cost reductions in the industry. Visit the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.

Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Visits OSU, Highlights Cancer-Fighting Research and 150 Years of Land-Grant University Partnerships

COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 28 - Shining a light on agricultural research that has implications for fighting cancer, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack visited The Ohio State University's (OSU) Center for Advanced Functional Foods Research and Entrepreneurship, where researchers are studying the development of novel functional foods and components that offer impressive benefits to health. Vilsack's visit coincides with the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the founding of the land-grant university system with the signing of the Morrill Act of 1862.

USDA partners with The Ohio State on a wide variety of food and agricultural research that provides an important investment in the Columbus community and beyond. Currently, OSU has 67 active research and integrated grants competitively awarded through USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), funded at more than $28.5 million. OSU regularly receives annual capacity building allocations to fund agricultural research and Extension. In federal fiscal year 2012, the institution received over $13 million in Extension formula funding and over $8 million in formula research funding from NIFA. Visit the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.

UPDATE: Federal Partners Continue to Support State and Local Partners as they Fight Wildfires

WASHINGTON, June 27 – As the federal family continues to aggressively respond to the wildfires in the Western states, the U.S. Forest Service, Department of the Interior, and Federal Emergency Management Agency announced additional resources have been deployed to support state and local partners. In light of the severity of current fire activity, the National Interagency Fire Center has raised the national preparedness level to level 4, on a scale of 1-5. Preparedness Level 4 (PL 4) triggers increased planning for additional resources and greater oversight of resource allocations in order to achieve the most effective deployment. PL 4 calls for additional restrictions on the practice of prescribed fire application or managing fires for multiple objectives to ensure resources are being deployed to the highest priorities. Federal partners also continue to work closely with first responders and firefighters from local, state, and tribal agencies to combat and monitor large wildfires including those in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Montana Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. Visit the USDA Newsroom to read the full release.


UNL Announces Interim Dean/Director

Alan Moeller assumed the leadership at University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), Extension as interim dean and director, effective July 1. From his many years as a key member of the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR) administration Moeller is familiar with the mission of UNL Extension and its integration in the tri-fold mission of teaching, research, and translational Extension. He has strong relationships with many of its clients and supporters, and his skills and experience will provide a stable environment for continuation of the excellence that is the hallmark of the people and programs of UNL Extension. This appointment is for an initial period of 60 days, but will be extended if necessary until a permanent dean and director joins the IANR leadership team. His address is: UNL Extension, 211 Agricultural Hall, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583-0703. Telephone: 402-472-2966; Fax: 402-472-5557.

National Job Bank Expands Services

The National Job Bank (a national online service for posting and finding positions within Extension, outreach, research, and higher education) is available to job seekers who have at least a bachelor’s degree and offers a look at position openings at universities and governmental agencies across the country. Among the new features is an alert system for job seekers. An individual can create a profile indicating the type of position and geographic region they are interested and receive an email message with positions matching their criteria at no cost. The site also links directly to the employers and the job descriptions, which it did not before. Both job seekers and employers need to register on the site to make full use of its capabilities. The site provides instructions and contact information.

The National Job Bank was started in 1994 by the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service and moved to the Journal of Extension in 2003. National Job Bank is operated by Extension Journal, Inc., the nonprofit that publishes the Journal of Extension.


Dorsey Receives 2012 Alumnus Award

Maurice W. Dorsey, national program leader for public policy in NIFA’s Division of Family and Consumer Sciences, was honored as the 2012 Alumnus of the Year at Bel Air Senior High School. As Alumnus of the Year, he delivered the 197th Annual Commencement Address. The senior class honored him for his dedicated service to the community and commitment to young people in the school community. His message to the class of 2012 was “Living Through Adversity.” The vice president of the Board of Education, Maryland State senators District 7 and 35, representatives of the Maryland House of Delegates, The Harford County Council, the Mayor of Bel Air, faculty, students, family and friends, and the school administration attended the commencement ceremony.

NIFA Grant Recipient Receives Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship

Pamela Y. Scheffler, co-project director with the Hawaii Community College, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutes (ANNH) NIFA grant recipients, received a Fulbright grant to study biodiversity in agro forestry systems in India. Scheffler will be on a Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship from August 2012-May 2013 working in Karnataka state in Southern India with the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment. While there she will research biodiversity patterns in agricultural, agro forestry, and natural ecosystems. She will build upon themes from her doctoral research (investigating biodiversity patterns in logged areas of the Brazilian Amazon) and current ANNH project and teaching. ANNH helps to fund Hawaii Community College’s Tropical Ecosystem and Agroforestry Management (TEAM) program to improve agriculture, agro forestry, and forest management education, especially for native Hawaiian students. As the agro forestry teacher for TEAM, Scheffler can directly apply what she learns while on her Fulbright study to the classroom and to projects working with her students on her return. Her work with the TEAM and ANNH inspired and helped her prepare for the Fulbright agro forestry research project.


The next NIFA issue is planned for July 25. Submit news items to: by July 6. If you have questions about Update, please contact the Editor: Judy Rude, public affairs specialist, NIFA Communications Staff.

To subscribe or unsubscribe to this newsletter, please send an e-mail message to Judy Rude. In the body of the message, type: subscribe nifa-update OR unsubscribe nifa-update. Back issues of NIFA Update are available on the NIFA website.

Sonny Ramaswamy, Director

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Questions? Comments? Last Updated: 07/11/2012