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A KNOWING GLANCE AT 2019

“… because as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; this is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns; the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”—Donald Rumsfeld, former United States secretary of defence.

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THE COMPLEXITY BENEATH OUR FEET

In 2019 the Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences (ALES) will celebrate a century of teaching and research in the discipline of soil science. It is fitting that we will also celebrate the 90th anniversary of the faculty’s Breton Plots, which were established to identify ways to enhance the fertility of the province’s grey luvisols.

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KEEPING ALBERTA MOVING

Rail lines and roadways provided needed access to Alberta’s coal resources, and Edson served as a supply depot as the railroad pushed West. The community was also the jumping-off point for those who travelled the Edson to Grande Prairie Trail to homestead in the Grande Prairie Region.

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PUTTING STUDENTS IN CHARGE

Are you ready to turn farming decisions over to the youngest farmers at the table? Lakeland College in Vermilion has done just that. The Student-Managed Farm (SMF) is a real-world lab where second-year students in the Animal Science Technology and Crop Technology programs take the reins as agricultural entrepreneurs.

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SO, YOU WANT TO BUILD AN APP?

Farmers are do-it-yourself (DIY) people. Determination and desperation leads many to become self-taught welders, mechanics, carpenters, and now, app developers. Sheila Elder and David Ricardo are two farmers who’ve solved problems by building apps.

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AN AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE IS BORN

 In 1912, Alberta agriculture minister Duncan Marshall announced the province would construct three agricultural colleges. The Vermilion School of Agriculture, later rechristened Lakeland College, opened first. Olds College remain in operation, while the Claresholm School of Agriculture was shut down in the early 1920s.

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4P PACT PAYS OFF FOR FARMERS

Launched in 2015, 4P, which stands for “public, private and producer partnership,” includes Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Canterra Seeds and the Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC). The pact is aimed at improving CPSR varieties.

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