In This Issue

  • A Message from the Dean
  • News from the College of Ag
  • Announcements and Awards
  • Events
  • Publications and Funding Opportunities

A Message from the Dean

Dear COA family and friends,

As I sit down to write this message, MSU's fourth week enrollment numbers have just been released. MSU announced a record enrollment of 16,978. Our College of Agriculture enrollment stayed steady, with 2,050 students, a slight increase compared to 2,033 students this time last year. Thank you to our faculty, staff and department heads for the outstanding job you do in making sure our students stay the course and succeed in reaching the goal of graduating with a college degree. I am also grateful to the outstanding student leaders in our college for their work to create a welcoming environment for all new and returning students.

This year, we moved from being the third largest to the fourth largest college on our campus. We will continue to be creative in our student recruitment, persistence and success efforts, and continue to evaluate and improve our strategies.

MSU has begun a month-long celebration of Hispanic heritage month, with the first event being a chat with Javier Zamora last week. I am reading his memoir, "Solito," and very much enjoyed listening to his conversation with President Waded Cruzado. Hispanic students represent the largest underrepresented ethnic group in our college, and I encourage everyone to participate in at least one event celebrating Hispanic heritage.

Wishing you a great fall season and a successful semester,

Sreekala Bajwa

News from the College of Ag

  • For the fifth year in a row, MSU has set a new record for research expenditures at $230 million. Once again, the College of Agriculture constituted the largest portion of the university's total with $50 million. Read more about MSU's research report here.
  • Congratulations are in order for LRES department head Dr. Bob Peterson! Dr. Peterson was named an honorary member of the Entomological Society of America earlier this month - one of the highest honors the society bestows. Read more about his recognition here.
  • Forty-six individuals will be honored this weekend during Homecoming, including five members of our COA team: David Gettel, Jane Mangold (Extension), Ryan McCormick, Megan Shroyer and Carl Yeoman. Read the full announcement here!
  • MSU will co-host the annual Montana Nutrition Conference and Livestock Forum in November, and registration is now open. Read the event preview here.
  • The Steer-A-Year program is seeking donations of steers, feed and financial support for the 2023-24 academic year. You can read more about the program here.
  • Students in Sonya Gimon's landscape design class implemented a unique project this spring exploring wildfire resilience and drought tolerance. They collaborated with local homeowners and experts to create new landscape design suggestions that center those climate considerations. You can read more here.

Announcements and Awards

  • We want to hear from YOU: The College of Agriculture and MAES are seeking your opinion on research needs in the state, and we want your feedback! Please take the time to fill out this short survey and share it with producers and constituents so we can do the best possible job of shaping future investments according to the needs of our stakeholders.
  • COA/MAES is pleased to announce an equipment RFP for each component of our operations, as well as the reopening of the COA Mini-Grant Program. Information on the equipment RFP can be found here, and information about the mini-grant program can be found here. Submission deadlines for both programs is October 30, and questions can be directed to Rebecca Falks at
  • Congratulations to Joe Atwood of the Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics! Dr. Atwood was selected for two awards at the 2023 Western Agricultural Economics Association meeting in Whistler, Alberta. He was awarded an Undergraduate Teaching Award and recognized as a WAEA Fellow for his excellence in research, teaching and service throughout his career. And he was joined at the ceremony by his son, Shane!
  • Tegner Jacobson, a graduate student in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Biology in the lab of Dr. Diane Bimczok, received a prestigious USDA pre-doctoral fellowship to study the role of biofilms in the pathogenesis of Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae infection in sheep. Tegner earned his bachelor's degree in microbiology from MSU and returned in pursuit of both his PhD and a graduate certificate in statistics. He has already co-authored three publications, won two presentation awards at national meetings, and received a one-year fellowship from the TL1 Translational Research Training Program.
    “Tegner is a highly talented and motivated trainee with excellent laboratory skills and great ideas, and this fellowship will be highly beneficial for his research and academic career," said Dr. Bimczok.

New Faces in the COA

Welcome to our new faculty and staff! If we missed anyone in this list, please email Reagan Cotton with new faculty/staff name, title and photo. We will be introducing all of our new faculty and staff on our social media channels during this fall semester.

  • Stacy Nation-Knapper joined us this summer as our new HR Business Partner. Welcome, Stacy!
  • Seunghyun Lee and Nicole Karwowski joined the faculty of the Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics, and Jess Roner joined DAEE as media and course coordinator (she's also a recent MSU graduate!)

Events in the COA

Upcoming Events

  • The first Bair Ranch Foundation Seminar for Fall 2023 will be held Thursday, September 28 at noon in ABB 138 and via Webex here. James Reecy, professor of animal science and vice president for research at Iowa State University, will deliver “International Collaboration and Development: Benefits Abound."
  • Join the College of Agriculture over Homecoming Weekend to celebrate 130 years of MSU and the College of Agriculture!
    • We will celebrate our alumni and award winners in a reception on the Linfield Hall front lawn this Friday, September 29 at 3:30 p.m.
    • Meet us at the Rockin' R Bar on Saturday, September 30 starting at 9:30 am to watch the MSU Homecoming Parade, enjoy a beverage and reunite with your fellow aggies!
  • Our Meet the Ag Employers event will take place Tuesday, October 3 at 5 p.m.! If you know of employers who might be interested, contact Liz Greenfield at

Recent Events

  • The Department of Animal and Range Sciences had a fantastic turnout at their Welcome Back party! Students took part in a treasure hunt that challenged them to introduce themselves to staff and faculty members to win T-shirts and other prizes. Thank you to Jane Ann Boles for spearheading this event!
  • Thank you to Tami Parrott, veterinarian and instructor of Equine Lameness (EQUS 327), who led a hands-on class on equine anatomy outside of ABB.
  • Lovreet Shergill of the Southern Ag Research Center in Huntley was invited by the Argentine Association of Weed Science to present at the MALEZAS 2023 conference. He presented "Harvest Weed Seed Control: A Valuable Addition to the Weed Management Toolbox” at the conference in Argentina. Thank you for your incredible outreach, Dr. Shergill!

Publications and Funding Opportunities

  • You can find a full list of recent publications from MSU's Library and Office of Sponsored Programs here. Recent publications include:
    • Book: Lance McNew, associate professor of wildlife habitat ecology, published "Rangeland Wildlife Ecology and Conservation." Expert contributors include our own Tim DelCurto, Sam Wyffles, Chris Posbergh and Jeff Mosley, along with other university and federal scientists, state and federal rangeland and wildlife managers, NGO scientists and conservationists and ranchers. The book is open access here.
    • Baber, K.W., C.A. Jones, K. McPhee, P.R. Miller, and P. Lamb. "Nitrogen fixation among pea and lentil varieties in the northern Great Plains." Agron Jour.
    • Baber, K., C. Jones, P. Miller, P. Lamb, and S. Atencio. "Lentil nitrogen fixation response to fertilizer and inoculant in the northern Great Plains." Agron Jour.
  • For current and upcoming funding opportunities, check out the MSU Office of Research and Economic Development database here.
  • Western SARE has issued calls for proposals for several programs:
  • Recent grants include:
    • Jessica Torrion, NWARC: $139,981 sub-award with UC-Davis from a $760,000 USDA-NIFA grant.  “Partnership: Decision Support Tool for Precision Management of Alfalfa for Yield and Quality Improvement”. Collaborators: UC-Davis, Univ. of Florida, and USDA-ARS.
    • Jane Boles, Tommy Bass: SARE Meat and Poultry Processing Project. Western SARE. $410,000.
    • Chris Posbergh, Brent Roeder, Carl Yeoman. Prevalence of Chlamydia abortusin Montana Domestic Rangeland Sheep. Bair Ranch Foundation. $89,700