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Feeding a Growing State

 

McCall Farms makes $3 million gift to advance farming research

 

There are more than 25,000 farms across South Carolina, and farming is one of the state’s leading industries. It is also a primary focus of Clemson’s College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. To help South Carolina farmers remain competitive both nationally and globally, McCall Farms is supporting Clemson with $3 million for critical research, establishing the McCall Farms Vegetable Breeding Endowment.

This endowment will support and enhance the vegetable breeding program within the college, specifically as part of the Advanced Plant Technology program. The program uses genomics-assisted breeding to develop improved vegetable varieties for production in the Southern United States. The APT program involves a statewide network of researchers supporting crop breeding and genetics in the Clemson University Agricultural Experiment Station.

Current projects in the vegetable breeding program include improving heat tolerance in green beans and disease resistance in leafy greens, muskmelon and watermelon.

The program, led by Stephen Kresovich, the Robert and Lois Coker Trustees Endowed Chair of Genetics, has made significant advancements to both the intellectual and operational capabilities of the University in crop agriculture. Improvements have been made in upgrading the research facilities at the Pee Dee Research and Education Center as well as other research and education centers across the state. Meanwhile, Clemson has hired some of the best and brightest new faculty for research positions at the RECs as well as the main campus. Funds from the McCall endowment will provide continuing support to this and other important research, improve equipment, provide supplies, and fund technical personnel salaries and graduate student research assistantships.

“Our research helps the more than 25,000 farms located throughout South Carolina in a variety of areas, including specialty crops, responding to weather and environmental changes, modernizing technology and field practices, and managing invasive species,” says President Jim Clements. “I am incredibly grateful to McCall Farms and the Swink family for their generous support. This donation will make a tremendous impact on farming across the state and beyond.”

Located in Effingham, South Carolina, McCall Farms understands the need for crop diversification and catering to consumer tastes. They established a canning operation in 1954 and work with a network of farmers throughout the state. They have several national brands of fruits and vegetables that are staples in kitchens across the country. McCall Farms is owned by Henry Swink ’68 and Marion Swink ’72 and operated by Woody Swink ’00, McCall Swink ’98 and Thomas Hunter ’06 — all Clemson alumni.

“While South Carolina farmers are some of the most efficient and productive in the world,” says CAFLS Dean Keith Belli, “this partnership with McCall Farms will be a catalyst for CAFLS’ efforts to provide research, teaching and Extension programs that continue to support the state’s agriculture industry as we tackle the challenge of sustainably feeding a growing state and global population.”

 

 

Friends of the Forest

Scotts are first Cornerstone Partners for College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences

As a land-grant university, Clemson is dedicated to educating our citizens about the abundant natural resources of our state. According to the South Carolina Forestry Commission, forestland encompasses nearly 12.9 million acres of South Carolina. Public agencies manage 13 percent of the state’s forests, while 87 percent belongs to more than 200,000 private landowners. Forestry and forest products are a $21 billion industry, one of the largest economic drivers in the state.

Amy and Mitchell “Micky” Scott ’75 share Clemson’s passion to educate the public and protect our natural resources, supporting causes that make a positive difference for the forest industry. Since 2013, they’ve made significant gifts of time and money to Clemson and the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences.

The Scotts recently added a $2.5 million gift that will provide need-based scholarships for students enrolled in the Forestry Summer Camp, scholarships for the recruitment and retention of top undergraduate talent in CAFLS, and fellowships and program support for graduate students enrolled in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Conservation. With this gift, the Scotts become CAFLS’ first Academic Cornerstone Partner.

“It is only fitting that Micky and Amy are the first Cornerstone Partners for the College,” says President Jim Clements. “Their gift will make a difference not only for generations of Clemson students but also for our entire state by enabling us to develop even more leaders for the fields of forestry and natural resources. I am incredibly grateful to Micky and Amy for their support.”

Leading his family’s Allendale, South Carolina, lumber business into the fourth generation, Micky Scott graduated from Clemson in 1975 with a B.S. in forest management. He serves on Clemson’s Wood Utilization + Design Institute Board and is former chair of the Timberland Legacy Advisory Committee. In 2019, he received the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences Distinguished Service Award for his efforts.

The College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences prides itself on being at the heart of Clemson’s land-grant mission, exemplifying founder Thomas Green Clemson’s vision of a high seminary of learning to serve the state of South Carolina. Support from leaders like the Scotts allow that legacy to continue for future generations.

 

Lifelong Tigers

iphoneTOTMscreenIntroducing Tigers on the Move

Ever want an easy way to find out what an old classmate is doing now? Or a quick way to send a message to the Clemson Family about your newest job, impending nuptials or move to a new location?

“Tigers on the Move,” a new interactive Web portal, will allow you to do just that. A complement to the alumni news found in Clemson World magazine, this site will allow for real-time, immediate updates and searchability.

Check it out at TigersOnTheMove.com and submit your latest Tiger news today!

RINGsepiaGetting (more) social

Are you a ring-wearing Clemson alum? We have recently launched a Twitter feed and Instagram page dedicated to the Clemson Ring. Share pictures of you and your ring, indicating your class year and location by tweeting @ClemsonRing and tagging ClemsonRing on Instagram.

Students have chosen Ashby B. Bodine as the 2013 Alumni Master Teacher.

MasterTeacher2013Bodine is professor emeritus/visiting professor in the Department of Animal and Veterinary Sciences in the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences.

Bodine’s research has been on the biochemistry and immunology of archaic vertebrates, in particular, sharks, rays and skates. Since 2006 an interdisciplinary Creative Inquiry team mentored by Bodine has been researching an anti-tumor protein from the bonnethead shark that has great potential for use in anti-cancer treatments.

Bodine has received the Godley-Snell Outstanding Agricultural Research Award, the Class of ’39 Faculty Award for Excellence, the Gamma Sigma Delta Outstanding Teacher Award, the National Scholars Program Award of Distinction and the Outstanding Teacher Award from the National Association for Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture.

The Alumni Master Teacher Award for outstanding undergraduate classroom instruction is presented to a faculty member nominated by the student body and selected by the Student Alumni Council.

Class of 1963Class of ’63 celebrates golden anniversary

This year marked the Golden Tiger Reunion for the Class of 1963. Bobby Kemp ’63 drove the same car to reunion that he drove off campus on graduation day. The car even had its original Clemson College parking decal. See page 46 for news on the Class of 1963’s reunion gift.

More than 450 attendees returned to campus for Reunion Weekend, and alums from the Classes of 1939
through 1963 gathered to reminisce and reconnect with the Clemson Family.

Alumni Association names new board members

The Clemson Alumni Association Board of Directors has elected four new members to take office July 1.

Gary E. Clary ’70 of Central, a retired circuit judge and certified mediator and arbitrator, will serve a two-year term. An IPTAY representative emeritus, he has served as a member of the Alumni Association National Council and is a past president of the Cherokee County Clemson Club and now a member of the Fort Hill Clemson Club.

Mike Dowling ’93 of Greenville, chief financial officer of Southern First Bancshares will serve a three-year term. He served on the Student Alumni Council and is a past-president of the Clemson University Young Alumni Council. He has also served as an Alumni National Council representative and Board of Visitors representative.

Patsy Siebert DuPre ’80 of Hendersonville, N.C., will serve a three-year term. An independent contractor in Washington, D.C., she was on the board of the Washington-Baltimore Clemson Club before moving to N.C. Members of the President’s Leadership Circle, she and her husband have a son at Clemson.

Heather Simmons Jones ’97, M ’12 of Columbia, founder and CEO of Opus 3, a firm specializing in economic development, human resources and labor relations, was re-elected to a two-year term. She was a charter member and officer for both the Coosawhatchie and Anderson Area Clemson clubs and is a board member of the Columbia Clemson Club.

The alumni board has 23 members and is the governing body for the Alumni Association. Primary responsibilities include general oversight of programs and initiatives of the Alumni Association, financial audit and review, creation of governing policies and strategic planning.

DOING IT RIGHT, DOING IT BETTER

SeniorPlatoon2013Marching into history

This spring, members of the Clemson Senior Platoon once again gathered on campus to celebrate their Clemson history. The first drill team ever established at Clemson, the platoon was founded in 1930 by Gator Farr as a way to reward senior cadets for three years of hard work. The group remained active from 1930 through 1960, when Clemson became a civilian school.

The platoon has performed at home football games, bowl games and even once at Yankee Stadium. Through the years, the Clemson Senior Platoon has contributed more than $25 million back to Clemson, making it one of the most generous groups in the University’s history. Under the leadership of Sanford Smith ’55, the platoon still performs at events such as the First Friday Parade and Military Appreciation Day.

Alumni and students mark National Week of Service

For the fifth year in a row, alumni clubs and groups celebrated a National Week of Service. The first week of April, 20 alumni groups, from Montana to New England, joined together in community service projects that ranged from packaging, cooking or delivering meals to working with Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofits.

This year, the event was coordinated with the annual University week of service, and through Clemson Sweep and the Unity Project, students participated in on- and off-campus service projects.

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FlagSCBecome a Clemson advocate!

The Enterprise Act, a bill that would allow Clemson to operate some of its non-academic functions more like a business, was passed by the S.C. Senate this spring, but didn’t make it through the House before the legislative session ended. The bill would give the University’s Board of Trustees the authority to move such functions as athletics, research and economic development into a new “enterprise division” that would be able to do such things as buy and sell property without going through the process required for state agencies.

It’s needed, Clemson officials say, because the bureaucracy of state government frequently inhibits the institution’s ability to undertake projects with private business and industry in a timely manner to respond to market conditions. You can be an advocate for Clemson at the state level. For more information, or to sign up, go to clemson.edu/governmentalaffairs.