Friday Features - May 12, 2017

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Friday Features
May 12, 2017

Students attend leadership seminar

Fourteen members of the Beta Gamma Chapter of Alpha Gamma Rho at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville attended the 2017 AGR Leadership Seminar held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Feb. 24-25. Those attending included nine officers, five members and an advisor. The title of the leadership seminar was the 2017 Total Leadership Challenge. The seminar provided an opportunity to hear from a wide range of speakers with positions and experience across many areas of the agricultural industry.

Representatives for prominent agricultural companies such as Monsanto, WinField and Zoetis spoke at the lunch and dinner sessions. They focused on the critical role agriculture plays in feeding the world and the challenges of a growing population. The speakers stressed the importance of educating people who are multiple generations removed from the farm. They also discussed the importance of technological advances in meeting new challenges and being advocates for agriculture.

In the leadership breakout sessions, students learned several new ideas that were brought back to the chapter and university. One of the most beneficial sessions was “Maneuvering Through Obstacles,” where the speaker talked about handling conflict during chapter meetings. Other breakout sessions included, “Leveraging Our Strengths,” “Collaborate to Conquer” and “Endurance for Life.” Topics during these breakout sessions ranged from standing out as a job competitor, building leadership skills throughout life and building teamwork.

Session speakers ranged from an animal nutrition specialist to an individual working for the United States Department of Agriculture. The conference provided an opportunity for the officer team and younger brothers to develop as leaders within AGR and at UW-Platteville.

The conference included Alpha Gamma Rho and Sigma Alpha members from across the country and provided several opportunities for networking. The conference also included a business etiquette program as part of an evening dinner, which served as a learning opportunity for members as they prepare for future professional dinners. Students were able to learn a variety of leadership skills that they will be able to use throughout their career.

Alpha Gamma Rho would like to acknowledge the Glenn Webb Education Fund/The GROWMARK Foundation for its financial support.

Ivanov presents research at international conference at Yale

IvanovDr. Andrey Ivanov, assistant professor of history at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, recently presented his research at the Rethinking Religion in Early Modern Russia Conference at the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.

At the conference, historians, social scientists, art historians and others from around the world examined important areas of change in religion in the early modern era and identified strategies for researching and rethinking religion – Orthodox and other faiths – in Russia in these centuries.

Ivanov and three co-presenters delivered a session entitled “The Reorientation of Orthodoxy,” which addressed Western influences – Protestant, Catholic and Enlightenment ideas – on the Russian church and society.

Ivanov presented “Did Russia Have a Reformation?” a research study examining Western influences on religious culture, politics and society in early Imperial Russia. In the paper, he argued that many of the ideas of the European Reformation had a profound impact on Russia and that the socio-religious reforms of Peter I and Catherine II were not isolated developments accidentally influenced by Western ideas, but rather, the extensions of a much wider European continuum of change. Ivanov also argued that Russia’s reform ended with the official reaction against reformed and enlightened Orthodoxy and that the Russian reformation replayed the course of development of Europe.

Ivanov’s co-presenters included Maksym Iaremenko, National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine; Gary Marker, State University of New York at Stony Brook; and Nadieszda Kizenko, State University of New York at Albany. Sergei Antonov, Columbia University, New York, New York, chaired the panel.

The conference was sponsored by the European Studies Council, Russian Studies Program, MacMillan Center and the Carnegie Foundation, and was supported by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation and the Edward J. and Dorothy Clarke Kempf Memorial Fund.

For information about the conference, visit: To read a news report about the conference, visit:

UW-Platteville establishes ACI student chapter

ACI Chapter studentsThe University of Wisconsin-Platteville recently formed a student chapter of the American Concrete Institute. This organization provides students opportunities that include ACI competitions, conventions, certification programs, networking with the concrete industry, free access to ACI publications, scholarships and fellowships. The UW-Platteville Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering as well as the ACI Wisconsin Chapter support this chapter.

Founded in 1904, the ACI is a leading authority and resource worldwide for the development and distribution of consensus-based standards, technical resources, educational and training programs, certification programs, and proven expertise for individuals and organizations involved in concrete design, construction, and materials, who share a commitment to pursuing the best use of concrete. ACI has more than 95 chapters, 110 student chapters and nearly 20,000 members spanning 120 countries.

Although the first official chapter meeting was on May 8, students at UW-Platteville have participated in several activities in the past two years including the Concrete Bowling Competition in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; the FRP Composites Competition in Detroit, Michigan; and the EMS Expo. UW-Platteville was awarded the Outstanding University of 2016 for active participation in student activities. The ACI Student Chapter is planning more hands-on activities for the fall 2017 semester.

Industry experts ‘Brag About Ag’

University of Wisconsin-Platteville students, faculty and staff recently held the 2017 Brag About Ag event, sponsored by the Collegiate Farm Bureau Chapter at UW-Platteville. These individuals had the opportunity to listen to agriculture industry experts and learn about new trends, technology advancements and controversial issues discussed in today’s society. The purpose of Brag About Ag was to promote the agricultural industry while clarifying any common misunderstandings.

Kim Bremmer from AgInspirations, located in Greenwood, Wisconsin, and Zach Fiene, from DMZ Aerial, located in Prairie Du Sac, Wisconsin, spoke to the gathered students, faculty and staff of UW-Platteville. Bremmer talked about sustainability and GMOs while Fiene discussed his work with drones and the new technology that DMZ Aerial is currently working on for pest identification.

“The speakers were very engaging and shared valuable information that can be applied to our daily lives,” Lara Daentl, Collegiate Farm Bureau president, said. “A large majority of students and staff stayed after the event to talk to the speakers and ask further questions and share related stories. The event was a time of learning as well as networking for all attendees.”

The event was planned and organized by Chad Bruss, director at large for Collegiate Farm Bureau, and the entire officer team. The Brag About Ag Committee also held a big role in organizing the event.

“The best part about Brag About Ag is that anyone can benefit from attending, no matter what major they are," Bruss said. “Agriculture is where your food comes from, and that is why it is important to know the facts behind it – whether it’s figuring out if the food you are buying is mislabeled or misleading, or how we are going to continue to feed the world in the future by incorporating more technology. This event is a great way to let others know exactly how it is being done and what the latest important topics are in the agricultural field.”


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