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December 2021 Edition of the Official Newsletter of the
School of Agricultural and Natural Sciences
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Congratulations UMES Winter 2021 graduates!
VIDEO:  Watch the Winter 2021 Commencement ceremony
Winter grad receives coveted early admission to veterinary school
VIDEO: WMDT "The Bright Side" congratulates Gaibrielle Bressler
VIDEO: UMES horticulturist comments on climate changes affecting Christmas tree industry
Message from the SANS Dean
COVID-19-UMES Updates & CDC Fact Sheet

UMES to collaborate on half million dollar food safety grant with UMD
UMES joins slate of presenters at Future Harvest annual conference
Registration open for January Produce Safety Rule Grower Training
UMES 2022 AgDiscovery Summer Program-Register before March 1
ACS Project SEED Summer Program virtual info session Jan. 20
2022 Biological Internship Opportunities in Chincoteague
UMES Land-grant Scholarship Program
Here's to a safe and prosperous new year!

Best wishes from SANS to our students, faculty, staff and stakeholders for a great start to the new year.  We hope you had a wonderful holiday season and are looking forward to the start of the spring semester.  
Congratulations UMES Winter 2021 Graduates!
Not only did the 179 graduates of the Winter Class of 2021 get to walk on December 17, they were also joined by a group of students from the Class of 2020 who celebrated their milestone a year ago with a virtual event due to the pandemic.  Pictured above, UMES President Dr. Heidi Anderson gets a photo op with the graduates during a dress rehearsal for commencement exercises.
Pictured at top (from left), among the SANS Winter 2021 bachelor's degree recipients are: Ariel Ferguson, biology; Star Ames, human ecology; Jenyfer Boyer, biology; Zion Brinson, biology; and Gaibrielle Bressler, general agriculture (Pre-Vet).

Above (from left), among the participants in UMES' Winter 2021 Commencement exercises are: Hernan Osorio, chemistry, May 2020 graduate; Chanelle Acheamfour, Ph.D., food science; Wendy Attuquayefio, Ph.D., food science; and Tylijah Cephas, general agriculture, May 2020 graduate.


Click HERE for a list of Winter 2021 SANS graduates
Click HERE to watch the commencement ceremony
UMES winter grad receives coveted early admission to veterinary school
Hard work and determination are paying off for Gaibrielle Bressler.  The Prince George's County resident not only graduated a semester early from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore Pre-Vet program, but has been accepted for early admission to Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in Indiana to earn her doctorate.  When she walked across the stage on December 17 during UMES' 25th winter commencement, she did so fully prepared for the next step toward achieving her dreams.

Bressler claimed one of the coveted spots for early admission to Purdue's program thanks in part to her participation in it's competitive Vet Up College internship program that she attended virtually last summer along with 26 peers from across the country.  For the 2021-22 admissions cycle, Purdue’s veterinary program received 1,537 applications for 84 seats including the pre-admission spots, said Lori Stout, the school’s director of admissions and recruitment.  According to the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges, 10,834 qualified applications had been received across the system for the 2021-22 admissions cycle.  On average, the acceptance rate is between 10-15 percent.

“I was in awe when the dean of the school called me. All I could say was ‘thank you’ over and over again,” Bressler said.  “Now when people ask my career goal, I don’t say, ‘I want to be a veterinarian’ anymore, I say ‘I’m going to be a veterinarian.’”
UMES student accepted into Purdue University Vet Med program
VIDEO:  Click on the image above as 47 abc features UMES Winter 2021 grad Gaibrielle Bressler on "The Bright Side" on December 16 for her "Good News" in being accepted for early admission to the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine & Veterinary Hospital.
The Prince George's Post also featured Bressler in its Dec. 23-29 issue. Click here and visit the archives for a pdf of the article.
Changes through the years impacting
Christmas tree growth
VIDEO:  Click the image above as UMES Assistant Professor of Horticulture and UMES Extension Specialist Dr. Naveen Kumar Dixit weighs in during a 47 abc report (December 20) on the local and state Christmas tree industry and how climate change can be a factor in the supply.
SANS students contribute some
holiday cheer to neighboring town
Members of UMES' HBCU Royal Court participated in Princess Anne's Christmas Parade to kick off the holiday season in early December . Biology (pre-med) majors Lloyd Dunbar (Mister Maroon & Gray, second from left) and Khari James (Mister 1886, second from right) represented SANS along with Human Ecology (fashion merchandising) major Taylor Brown (Miss Maroon & Gray, first from left).


Dear SANS Stakeholders,

A Happy New Year to all of you! I am delighted for this opportunity to extend to you greetings at the beginning of another year. Without a doubt, 2021 was challenging, but I was inspired seeing how everyone rose to the challenge to ensure that we continued our positive march forward.
December was an exciting month and I was very happy to witness another crop of graduates walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. Let me take this opportunity to extend a belated, but very sincere, warm congratulations to all the graduates - you can now go out and change the world for the better!
With the continued upsurge in COVID-19 cases, it will be critical that we all adhere to the safety guidelines. Please be safe and ensure that all around you are safe as well. With very best wishes for a healthy and highly productive 2022.
Moses T. Kairo
SANS Professor and Dean

The health and well-being of our campus and the community is our highest priority. The University's Task Force is working diligently to stay informed of changing dynamics in the coronavirus outbreak. 
UMES Updates
CDC Guidelines

UMES and New Mexico State University to collaborate with UMD on half million dollar grant to champion food safety

UMES Extension and New Mexico State University will play vital roles in a half million dollar USDA-NIFA grant to provide small farmers of fresh produce the training tools to help their workers ensure safe food practices for Maryland consumers.
Pictured at left from top to bottom: Food Safety Specialist Dr. Melinda Schwarz, Environmental and Agricultural Faculty Legal Specialist Nicole Cook and Small Farm Program Coordinator Berran Rogers will serve as co-principal directors on the project, “TRAIN: Targeted Resources Addressing Identified Needs in Maryland worker food safety training via on-farm piloting of a mixed media toolkit.”

The USDA-NIFA grant was awarded to UMD Extension faculty, Drs. Shauna Henley and Angela Ferelli, to provide small- and medium-sized farms that grow, harvest, pack and hold fresh produce with training and tools to “enhance and sustain an operational culture that champions food safety.”
UMES will join slate of presenters at Future Harvest annual conference Jan. 13-14
Future Harvest-A Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture has brought farmers, food entrepreneurs and educators together each winter for over two decades to share information toward building a resilient regional foodshed.  This year's event features some 20 sessions led by successful farmers and renowned leaders in regenerative agriculture along with two keynote addresses; Renard Turner of Vanguard Ranch in Louisa County, Virginia, and David Montgomery and Ann Bilké, authors of "What Your Food Ate."
Click HERE to register!
UMES Extension will be participating in the Maryland Food Network's FSMA Produce Safety Rule Grower Training virtual training January 26 and 27, from 12:30-4:45 p.m. both days. The training half-day sessions will cover the Produce Safety Rule and how to reduce sources of microbial contamination in produce production.  Direct questions to Dr. Melinda Schwarz, UMES Extension Food Safety Specialist,

Who Should Attend?

Fruit and vegetable growers and others interested in learning about produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), and co-management of natural resources and food safety. The PSA Grower Training Course is one way to satisfy the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirement outlined in § 112.22(c) that requires ‘At least one supervisor or responsible party for your farm must have successfully completed food safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized as adequate by the Food and Drug Administration.’

Register HERE before January 10
Gearing up for Summer 2022 opportunities for high school students
UMES is among the 2022 locations for the AgDiscovery Summer Program.

The free two-week program takes place June 12-25 on campus through the Department of Agriculture, Food and Resource Sciences.

Participants will:
•Increase their awareness of the diverse careers and opportunities in food and agricultural sciences
•Participate in experiential learning activities through a series of hands-on labs, workshops, research projects and field trips
•Interact with scientists conducting state-of-the-art research at the UMES Agricultural Experiment Station and at regional research centers
•Participate in character and team-building activities
•Reside on the university campus

Students currently in grades 8-11 can apply by March 31, 2022 below.  Direct questions to Corrie Cotton 
Register HERE before March 31, 2022
The American Chemical Society will be hosting a Student Information Session on Thursday, January 20 at 6 p.m. (ET) for high school students interested in its 2022 Project SEED summer program. Students, teachers and other interested parties can register by clicking the button below.   ACS staff will discuss the new student application process, application deadlines and give an overview of the program.  

UMES will be accepting two high school students to work in its research labs for the full-time eight-week in-person summer internship program that includes a $3,200 stipend.  Interested students will need to apply through a centralized process with the ACS and choose UMES as the preferred program site on the application. The application window opens February 1-March 10.  (See button below)

Click HERE for Project SEED 2022 Student Information Session
Click HERE for more information and to be notified when the application window opens February 1
Internship opportunities for undergraduates
Apply now through April 1 to UMES' AFRI-EWD-REEU 2022 Summer Internship!

The program, supported by a nearly half a million dollar USDA-NIFA grant, is slated to take place on campus (pending COVID guideline updates) May 30-August 7.  Applicants for the summer program must be full-time non-UMES undergraduate students in agriculture, chemistry, biochemistry, biology, environmental science, computer science, engineering or technology who are interested in exploring how their major can be applied to a career in agriculture and food science. 

To apply, applicants can send a two-page essay explaining their interest in applying their major to agriculture and food science, their resume and unofficial transcripts to Dr. Victoria Volkis at before April 1, 2022.  Interns receive a $3,000 stipend in addition to room and board for in-person or $4,000 if remote. 

In addition, Volkis is seeking two UMES students for a paid internship commencing this spring to be trained to become group leaders and two UMES undergraduates for the fall semester.
Deadline for application is February 20, 2022, but apply early!  Selections may begin before the closing date.  To apply, email cover letter, resume and email and phone numbers for three professional references to Katie Walker, wildlife biologist at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge at Katie_Walker@fws.govEmail Walker for more information on general requirements and benefits.
Volunteer opportunity for Maryland
student climate action coalition

The MaryPIRG Student Climate Action Coalition is a body that brings together students of public universities across Maryland to take action to accelerate climate action on college campuses statewide.  UMES’ representative is Iyinyeoluwa “Ruth” Okulate.  The student organization is seeking a volunteer coordinator to lead research into environmental justice, work on community service opportunities and develop initiatives for students related to climate change.  Contact Okulate at if you are interested in this volunteer position or if you are interested in becoming a delegate.
Enjoy reading the SANS Digest? 

You can help us spread the word about all of the great things our students and faculty are doing by forwarding this email to research partners, colleagues and other stakeholders that may not be receiving School of Agricultural and Natural Sciences newsletters, such as the SANS Monthly Digest and UMES Extension's newsletter, Connections!.  

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Subscribe to the SANS Monthly Digest HERE
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Upcoming Events

Look for more to come in the new year!


SANS in the News

UMES winter grad receives coveted early admission to veterinary school
The Price George's Post, December 23-29, 2021 (Visit the archives)

Changes through the year's impacting Christmas tree growth
WMDT, December 20, 2021

UMES student accepted into Purdue University Vet Med program
WMDT, The Bright Side, December 16, 2021

Previous Editions . . .

The SANS Monthly Digest-November 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-October 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-September 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-August 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-July 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-June 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-May 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-April 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-March 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-February 2021
The SANS Monthly Digest-January 2021

The SANS Monthly Digest-December 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest-November 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest-October 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest-September 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest- August 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest - June 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest- May 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest - April 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest- March 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest - February 2020
The SANS Monthly Digest - January 2020

The SANS Monthly Digest - December 2019
The SANS Monthly Digest - November 2019
The SANS Monthly Digest - October 2019
The SANS Monthly Digest - September 2019
The SANS Monthly Digest - August 2019
The SANS Monthly Digest - July 2019
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