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The Premier College Destination for Agriculture and Forestry in Louisiana

We are excited to introduce our newly-formed school that offers exciting opportunities for those who are passionate about agriculture, forestry, wildlife management, or GIS. Our degree programs and corresponding concentrations give students valuable knowledge and hands-on learning experiences that will allow them to be leaders in their future careers. We invite you to get to know our faculty and students in this first edition of our school's newsletter. You can also visit our website using the button below.

School of Agricultural Sciences & Forestry
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During March 18th and 19th, the Louisiana Tech Forestry Club competed in the 59th Annual Southern Forestry Conclave sponsored by the Association of Southern Forestry Clubs and hosted by Clemson University. They competed against 14 other schools including Virginia Tech, the University of Florida, and Stephen F. Austin. Twenty-five 25 Louisiana Tech students (led by their faculty advisor Dr. Bill Patterson) competed in 24 events testing both their physical and technical prowess. Notably, Louisiana Tech placed in the top half in several physical events including 5th in archery (Lane Cox), 4th in chain throw (Michael McVay and Brady Kumler), 6th in log roll (Derrick and Ben Moore), 4th in Jack & Jill crosscut saw (Jessi Stack and Derrick Moore), 1st in men's crosscut saw (Derrick and Ben Moore; see photo), and technical events including 1st in compass and pacing (Kyle Gordon), 4th in DBH estimation (Michael McVay), 1st in timber estimation (Dewey Amyx), and 4th in wood tech (Aubrey Williams). The team finished in 8th place overall for physical events, 5th place for technical events, and 6th for the overall competition. Notably, we beat some of our biggest rivals this year including Mississippi State University (7th), the University of Arkansas-Monticello (8th), and Louisiana State University (14th). Additionally, the STIHL® Timebersports® Series Collegiate Qualifier was held and Brady Kumler represented Louisiana Tech University, winning 6th place overall. Louisiana Tech University is slated to host Conclave and the STIHL events in 2020.
Aaron Babers (left) and Dr. Paul Jackson (right) set up and hosted the 2016 Louisiana State Agronomy FFA CDE Event at Lomax Hall on April 22, 2016. This event gives high school students the opportunity to gain a knowledge of the cultural practices related to commercial row-crop production. Students participated in several practicums including plant identification, plant disorders classification, insect identification, soil evaluation, and a general knowledge exam on agronomic practices. Fourteen high school FFA teams (comprised of four students each) participated in this year's event. The top four scoring teams received special recognition along with awards provided by the Louisiana FFA Association. The top teams were:
1st - Natchitoches Central HS (Blue Team)
2nd - Natchitoches Central HS (Gold Team)
3rd - Ruston High School (Blue Team)
4th - Lakeview High School (Blue Team)

The winning team will represent Louisiana FFA at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana in October where they will compete against other agronomy CDE teams from across the United States.
On February 11th , our school and the Athletic department hosted an FFA night at the Davison Athletic Complex followed by a basketball game. We had a great dinner with some great alumni speakers, and then we watched the Bulldogs get a nice win. This first-ever hosting of a FFA night resulted in a max capacity at the complex with 303 students from 16 schools. It was made possible by several local alumni and contributions from both our school and the College of Applied and Natural Sciences.
Dr. Joshua Adams served as the host chair of the 2015 Southern Forest Tree Improvement Conference held at Hot Springs, AR, and is also serving a 2-year term as the current chair of the permanent SFTIC committee. Existing since 1951, the conference meets every two years with attendees from the forest industry, state and federal agencies, and forestry schools. The purpose is to advance the state of knowledge and technology used in the southern forest tree genetics. Dr. Adams also published the 33rd proceedings affiliated with this conference. A link to the proceedings can be found at www.sftic.org.
This year, SASF hosted the first-ever South Campus Demo Day for the West Ouachita High School Ag I classes. Approximately 60 students came to South Campus and learned about the pre-vet program, horses, wildlife, GPS, and planting techniques in the greenhouse. The day was concluded with a nice South Campus hamburger grilling. SASF has already been asked to repeat this next year and hope to extend the invitation to more schools.
Doc, Did I Wake You Up? Congratulations to Dr. William Green for publishing his book entitled “Doc, Did I Wake You Up?” The book is a compilation of real-world experiences that Dr. Green has had through his career as a veterinarian. The book was released in April and is currently available at the Tech Bookstore or at online vendors.
Pre-veterinary medicine students accepted into a college of veterinary medicine were presented with a stethoscope by Dr. Green and Dr. Murphey. This past year was another great year for the Pre-veterinary Medicine program with 14 students being accepted to colleges of veterinary medicine. While most students are accepted into the College of Veterinary Medicine in Baton Rouge, we also had students that were accepted this year into other universities, including Auburn and Mississippi State. These students will join over 50 Louisiana Tech alumni that are currently studying veterinary medicine this fall and hundreds of alumni that are practicing veterinary medicine throughout the United States.
Several SASF Faculty and Students presented research  at the 2016 College of Applied and Natural Sciences Research Symposium. Among those who presented were Dr. Paul Jackson, Ms. Maggie Morgan, Dr. Mark Murphey, Dr. Heidi Adams, Dr. Joshua Adams, Mr. Brady Kumler, Mr. Chris Olvey, Ms. Blair Bennett, Dr. William Green, Dr. Ashley Keith, and Dr. Maureen Hillard. Furthermore, Dr. William Green was awarded the ANS Instructor of the Year (300- and 400-level courses) and Dr. Paul Jackson was given the ANS Scholarly Activity Award (left, with Dr. Gary Kennedy, ANS Dean, right, in above photo).
June 6th marked the first day of the 2016 Forestry Summer Camp. Students involved in summer camp will take courses in forest measurements, silviculture, forest products and operations, and GPS. The first class on the agenda is Forest Sustainability and Recreational Use, which included the much-anticipated Arkansas field trip. During this field trip, student visited the Ouachita and Ozark National Forests, hiked several mountain trails, viewed elk in their natural habitat, and took a 2-day canoe trip down the Buffalo River.
The Louisiana Garden Club Federation Inc. Scholarship was awarded to Aaron Babers, a senior in Agricultural Education with a minor in Plant Science, for the 2016-2017 school year. Aaron received the $2,000 scholarship from this Lake Charles-based organization, which gives only awards two scholarships every year. The objective of the federation is to bring local garden clubs together through joint efforts pertaining to the environment and conservation, floral design, landscape design, all types of gardening, and the general study of horticulture. Congratulations, Aaron, for your accomplishment!
On February 13th, we hosted the 2016 Home Gardening Workshop at Lomax Hall. The theme of the third annual workshop was "Raised Bed and Container Gardening". There were 93 attendees from the community. Dr. Paul Jackson, Dr. Maureen Hillard, and Mr. Waggoner Russell (pictured left) were among the faculty presenters at the event. We thank all of our sponsors for donating 26 door prizes, a special thanks to the Irrigation-Mart for providing the refreshments!
Chris Stelly (left) and Colby Sharp (right), both graduates of the Louisiana Tech Forestry program, have returned as graduate students pursuing Master of Science degrees under the advisement of Dr. Heidi Adams. Stelly is a 2014 LaTech Forestry Graduate and will be determining how the landscape and silvicultural techniques influence the selection of natal den sites among female Louisiana black bears. Sharp graduated from the program in May 2016 and will be assessing the avian community in a 20-year old afforested hardwood forest in western Louisiana.
On July 21st, Dr. Paul Jackson presented at the Joint Meeting of the Southern Forestry Nursery Association and the Northeastern Forest & Conservation Nursery Association. The title of Dr. Jackson's presentation was "Evaluation of longleaf pine fertilization treatments in the nursery nine years after the outplanting."
Congratulations to Dr. Gordon Holley on the publication of his recent manuscript! The paper, titled "Sales of Forestry-related Speciality License Plates in the Southern United States: A County Level Empirical Analysis," was coauthored by Drs. Shuan Tanger, MdFarhad H. Masum, and Michael A. Blazier (all from LSU).
Samuel "Ty" Strozier (2013 LaTech GIS Alumnus), graduated from Louisiana Tech with a Master of Science in Biology. His thesis research, "Evaluation of stand structure and species composition of a bottomland hardwood afforestation in the Red River Alluvial Valley, Louisiana," was funded by the Wildlife Habitat Council and the Partners for Fish and Wildlife, US Fish and Wildlife Service. He worked under the advisement of Dr. Bill Patterson. (In the photo, L to R: Michael Renfrow, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Buddy Bonaventure, NRG; Dr. Ronnie Haynes, US Fish & Wildlife Service; Dr. Bill Ross, Louisiana Tech School of Agricultural Sciences & Forestry; Sumita Prasad, Wildlife Habitat Council; Andy Dolan, US Fish & Wildlife Service; and Samuel "Ty" Strozier.)
Dr. Joshua Adams installed a unique upland sweetgum study of South Campus. This will be a long term study testing both genetic and herbicide factors and will be the thesis topic of incoming graduate student, Robert Hane (LaTech Forestry Alum, 2015), this upcoming year. American sweetgum was bred with its Asian cousin to produce new lines hybrids that have extremely fast growth rates, good wood qualities and upland adaptability. Dr. Adams partnered with another Forestry alum, Dr. Michael Blazier (LSU Extension), to install the only two plantings in Louisiana. The hope is that information from these plantings will pave the way for any future expansion of using hybrid sweetgum.  Seedlings were provided by Arborgen©.
Congratulations to Drs. Ashley Keith, Laura Gentry, and Maureen Hillard on receiving funding for their project "Development of a Nutrition and Physiology Teaching Laboratory Providing Kinesthetic Learning Opportunities for Undergraduates in Agricultural Sciences!" The amount for the total grant was $41,700.
Brady Kumler and Chris Olvey, both seniors in the SASF Forestry Program, have been conducting a study to determine if white-tailed deer actually prefer high-dollar food plot seed mixes over the less expensive mixtures. Under the guidance of Drs. Heidi and Joshua Adams, Kumler and Olvey have been monitoring deer activity at the plots using game cameras at two food plots established in the Ruston area. They will be reviewing these photos and documenting where the deer feed a majority of the time based on where three different seed mixes were planted. They hope to gather at least one more season of data before beginning data analysis and presenting their final results. Special thanks to the National Wild Turkey Federation for their contributions to this study!
Congratulations to Dr. Bill Patterson on his recent publication in the International Journal of Geotechnical Engineering! The article, titled "Soil-binding ability of vegetation roots in enhancing erosion resistance of a shallow slope," can be accessed by clicking on the citation below.

Shahriar, M. M., J. X. Wang, S. Alam, and W. B. Patterson. 2016. Soil-binding ability of vegetation roots in enhancing erosion resistance of a shallow slope. International Journal of Geotechnical Engineering 10(4): 409-417.
Society of American Foresters / Forestry Club
The Louisiana Tech University’s Forestry Club is a chapter of the Society of American Foresters, a national organization of professional excellence and academia.  Over the past year, the forestry club has participated in festivals, social events, local projects, and competitions, including the 59th Annual Forestry Conclave. The team placed sixth this year, but plan to improve for next year’s competition at Stephen F. Austin State University.  The club also began an annual tailgating event for the homecoming game. Current students, alumni, and friends all enjoyed music, food, and friends before cheering on the Bulldogs.  We are looking forward to this upcoming school year.
Stock Horse Team
The Louisiana Tech Stock Horse Team is a group of students who have come together to ride horses and learn how to be better horsemen and women. Their goal is to show what they have learned at local shows such as Cotton Country Horse Show Association with the ultimate goal to show across the state as members in the Louisiana Stock Horse Association. Many of these students have never shown before and their range of experience is from very limited to very advanced. This is a special group that works together to help each other improve and learn. Funding for the Stock Horse Team is self-generated and comes from wonderful donors and fundraising events hosted by the team.
Greenscape is a club that is open to students of all majors to promote interest in the field of  plant science, such as plant propagation, landscaping, vegetable and ornamental gardening, pest management, nursery and greenhouse production, agronomy, and botany. Students in Greenscape have opportunities to interact with the local community and develop relationships with students that have common interests.  Greenscape has been a part of many activities that include educating grade school students, volunteering with horticultural projects in the community, and experiencing hands-on learning through field trips and interaction with professionals in the region.    
Block and Bridle Club
The club serves to promote the improvement and increase the interest among students of Animal Science and to bring about closer relationships among men and women pursuing Animal Science as a profession. We strive to interact with local producers and the community to promote all aspects of animal agriculture. Each year our Block and Bridle members host events such as a Horseless Rodeo, the Little International Stock Show, an annual Block and Bridle Banquet, and a trip to agriculture companies or livestock production operations in the spring. In this picture, Ashley Keith and four B&B officers attended the National Block and Bridle Convention in Tulsa, OK. 
Equestrian Club
The Equestrian Club at LA Tech University is composed of students who love horses regardless of major and experience. Some of our service activities include shoe box gifts for children in need, assisting with the therapeutic riding program at the Outdoor Wilderness Learning Center, volunteering at the LA Tech Equine Center, participating local schools' equine education activities, and assisting at the Holly Hill Equestrian Trials. Recreational activities range from traveling to the Extreme Makeover Challenge, Clear Creek Stud Stallion Showcase, visiting local farms, and hosting social events for members.
Rodeo Club
The Rodeo Club at LA Tech University is made up of students who love horses and rodeo and wish to be part of developing a team to compete in the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA). The NIRA’s mission is to foster and develop rodeo at the college level so that it will provide educational and competitive opportunities for students. Currently we have about 15 members, one of which is currently showing in the NIRA and four others that plan to participate next year. Not all members of the club participate in the actual NIRA; however, it is a great way to be involved in an exciting and ever-growing equine sport. So, if you love horses, rodeo and being involved, join us! The club does fundraisers and other events to raise money, not only to participate in the NIRA but to travel to rodeos to enjoy and learn more about the sport. For instance, several members went to the National Finals Rodeo last December in Las Vegas as a reward for all of their hard work during the year.
Pre-Veterinary Medicine Club
This club is specifically designed for students majoring in pre-veterinary medicine. Our meetings and events create an atmosphere where students can learn more about a career in veterinary medicine and exercise their leadership abilities through organizing and leading our meetings and events. We put on two dog dips a year, serving the community by bathing dogs, trimming nails and giving flea dips. We also go on an annual trip to tour a vet school where students are able to learn about prospective schools and interact with professors and their peers.

Mascot Care Team is a group of 14 students that serve as the student caretakers of Tech’s live English Bulldog mascot, Tech XXI. These students make sure Tech XXI is exercised everyday and that he is exhibited at all possible recruiting, athletic, and special events. They continually monitor his health and well being. This organization is limited to pre-vet students that apply for the positions during their sophomore or junior years.
Collegiate FFA
Many people believe that FFA ends at the high school level, but this is not true! FFA actually has opportunities for college students of any major in a sector known as Collegiate FFA. Collegiate FFA is a service organization dedicated to premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. At Louisiana Tech, Collegiate FFA members are responsible for assisting with Career Development Events for high school students at district, area, and state levels. Collegiate FFA is also active in student recruitment through events such as the State FFA Goodwill Tour, the annual State FFA Convention, and other similar functions. These experiences diversify the members' portfolios and connect them with potential employers across the state and nation. Louisiana Tech's Collegiate FFA Chapter consists of five officers and is involved in many South Campus events such as Farm Day. Involvement in Collegiate FFA will open doors of opportunity to endless career paths.
The Wildlife Society
The Louisiana Tech Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society is made up of students who work with wildlife and their associated habitats, share a love of the outdoors, and know the value of natural resources and their conservation.  We understand the importance of conserving diversity, sustaining productivity, and ensuring responsible use of wildlife resources for the benefit of the public and future generations. This year, TWS members volunteered with Louisiana Hunters for Heros and the National Wildlife Turkey Federation (NWTF; see photo). They also had guest speakers from NWTF and the National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) talk with them about employment with their associated agencies.
Dr. William Green, SASF Director
Pre-veterinary Medicine & Animal Science
My life has changed direction a bit as I was appointed Director of the newly merged School of Agricultural Sciences and Forestry. This in addition to my regular duties of teaching and advising students and release of my first published book. The days go much faster! This spring was very busy with our scholarship banquets, FFA CDE programs, campus visits, speaking engagements, livestock show and sale and club banquets.  However, these are all valuable activities as they allow us to visit with prospective students, reward future and current students with scholarships and showcase our programs, faculty, and students. Our annual Livestock Show and Sale will showcase our animals produced on the farm and used by our students. Some of the proceeds derived from the sale will go toward much needed student scholarships. I am excited to be a part of all these activities and other activities that we have planned to make our programs stronger for the future.
Dr. Mark Murphey
Animal Science
Agricultural Sciences Program Chair
Dr. Gordon Holley
Forest Economics
Interim Forestry Program Chair

Meet the rest of our wonderful faculty by following the link below!
Meet the SASF Faculty
As the School of Agricultural Sciences and Forestry continues to grow and progress, we need your participation and support for scholarship funding. Your give, large or small, will allow us to continue the focus on our students, spending private dollars in a way that most benefits them. Our goal is to continue to recruit highly talented students and rewards them with scholarships. All the students in the picture below, for instance, received a Louisiana Forestry Association Scholarship in 2016 to help defray tuition costs.
Recruiting quality students to continue the long tradition at Louisiana Tech for producing top agricultural and forestry professionals is always a priority, and fits with the university's growth goals, Your contribution can help send recruiters to events such as the state FFA convention in Monroe. Tech XXI showed up, too! For every $5 contribution, we can recruit another high school student to our school!
We depend on our student organizations to maintain the fraternal atmosphere on South Campus and for exposure to our school. Each one of our clubs would ideally have a personalized club tent for recruitment activities and outreach. Above, Forestry Club members participated in the Ruston Farmers Market to teach kids about tree anatomy and growth. This is just one of our student organizations that dedicate themselves to helping Louisiana Tech and the surrounding community.
Maintenance of our grounds and facilities is always a challenge. While we have student organizations, such as Greenscape, help us out, but we are always looking for garden sponsors such as the one in front of the Lomax Hall (see above photo). With your sponsorship and our hands-on abilities, our grounds can be fitting of the premier Agriculture and Forestry school in Louisiana.
Keeping our GIS program up to date with current equipment and software is critical as we grow this program to meet the future needs of the workforce. Every year, GIS software costs $25,000 in renewal fees. Contributions like this are critical to producing competitive future alumni in the job market.
It's been over 10 years since the last Hardwoods Grading Class was taught at Louisiana Tech, which was a regional attraction in the forest industry. Our old sawmill is out of commission and we only have a small bandsaw that Dr. Joshua Adams recently got operational (see above photo). Any help on acquiring equipment and updating the sawmill would be a great recruiting activity and good exposure for the school to the general public.
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This past year has been an exceptional year in the School of Agricultural Sciences and Forestry, due to no small part of the loyal support from our amazing alumni and friends. Thank you! We're excited about our future and look forward to staying connected by keeping you informed with the latest news and activities as we continue to grow. We welcome and encourage feedback from you.

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Copyright © 2016 Louisiana Tech University, All rights reserved.

Our mailing addresses are:
Agricultural Sciences:  P. O. Box 10198 / Ruston, LA  71272
Forestry: P. O. Box 10138 / Ruston, LA  71272

Newsletter Editors: Dr. Joshua Adams & Dr. Heidi Adams

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