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September Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Human Milk and Breastfeeding: Scientific Challenges, Paradigm Shifts, and Unanswered Questions”
September 13th, 2022 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

See the Facebook event here

This month’s speakers:

Join Courtney Meehan and Shelley McGuire on September 13th for their pub talk, “Human Milk and Breastfeeding: Scientific Challenges, Paradigm Shifts, and Unanswered Questions”.

Breastfeeding is universally considered the gold standard in infant nutrition and has sustained human existence since time immemorial. Yet surprisingly little is known about why breastfeeding imparts such important health benefits to infants. Indeed, substantially more is known about milk composition and lactation in dairy cows than in women due to the economic importance of the dairy industry to agriculture and farming. However, research conducted collaboratively by several interdisciplinary research groups at Washington State University and the University of Idaho has succeeded in tackling a host of critical questions that have long required attention. This challenging science has frequently confronted dogma, often needing to return to the most basic of questions to help researchers and women understand the complexities and power of human milk and breastfeeding. The research has spanned a divergence of topics and questions such as:  Does milk composition vary around the world?; Do childcare practices alter milk composition?; Does human milk transmit SARS-CoV-2 and/or provide antibodies to this virus?;  and Does cannabis use during lactation alter human milk composition? Join us while we explore the messy but lifesaving science of human milk, the unanswered questions, and how WSU and UI researchers are working to translate their findings to purpose and practice.

Courtney Meehan is the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies and a Professor of Anthropology in the College of Arts and Sciences at Washington State University.  Meehan’s research focuses on the social and environmental determinants of human milk composition, maternal-infant microbiomes, childcare and maternal-infant health. Most recently, she has focused on breastfeeding and COVID-19 and cannabis use during lactation. She conducts field research in the Central African Republic, Ethiopia, and the United States. She has collaborated with Drs. Shelley McGuire, Mark McGuire, and Janet Williams at the University of Idaho for over a decade on a variety of human milk and microbiome research. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Leakey Foundation.

Shelley McGuire earned PhD in human nutrition from Cornell University and was faculty at Washington State University from 1997 until 2018 when she became Director of the Margaret Ritchie School of Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Idaho. Over her career, she has worked closely with Drs. Mark McGuire and Janet Williams (both animal scientists at the University of Idaho) and Dr. Courtney Meehan (WSU) studying a broad range of topics, including the impact of maternal nutrition on milk composition, reproductive function during the postpartum period, implications of COVID-19 during breastfeeding, and mastitis. The McGuire/Williams team’s finding in 2011 that milk contains its own unique microbiome represented an important paradigm shift in the field, and their collaborative global INSPIRE Study is considered a gold standard in terms of understanding human milk composition. Shelley’s research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, United States Department of Agriculture, the National Science Foundation, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

EFA Fall 2022 Events Schedule

Pub Talk September 13th 6-7pm
Speakers: Courtney Meehan and Shelley McGuire
Venue: Paradise Creek Brewery
Click here for more info

Speaker Series September 22nd
Speaker: Dr. Brittany Berry-Pusey
Department: Physics and Astronomy
Click here for more info

Pub Talk October 11th 6-7pm
Speakers: Julia Day and Craig Parks
Venue: Paradise Creek Brewery

Social at JSMOA October 19th 5-630pm
Social Event: During WSU Research Week
Venue: Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art
Please RSVP here

Pub Talk Nov 15th  6-7pm
Speakers: Alex Fremier and Mark Swanson
Venue: Paradise Creek Brewery

Details on events are posted on the EFA Events page closer to the event date.

May Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Debate on the Ethics of Genome Editing in Livestock”
May 10th, 2022 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

See the Facebook event here

This month’s speakers:

Join Alison Van Eenennaam, Brenda Murdoch, Jason Winfree, Patricia Glazebrook, W.Jay Gordon, Amber Adams-Progar, and Jill McCluskey on May 10th for their pub talk, “Debate on the Ethics of Genome Editing in Livestock”.

Opposition to foods made from new technology, especially genetic engineering, has been increasing over time. Recent advances in genome-editing are widely acknowledged to have tremendous potential for beneficial results, but research is needed to understand the accompanying potential scientific, ethical, regulatory, and social consequences. Since genome editing is a relatively new phenomenon, there is an opportunity to study how social interactions affect consumer acceptance. Consumers obtain information about new technology in many ways, including personal interactions, social media, and traditional media. The presenters project examines how the delivery of this information through various forms of media affects consumer acceptance of genome editing. In their talk/debate, they will address genome-edited hornless livestock and animal welfare. They will explain how they use text-mining algorithms on major social and traditional news media websites to understand these websites impact on public sentiment about genome editing and animal welfare. This public-engagement event aims to facilitate communication between scientists, producers, ethicists, and the public about the use of genome editing for hornless cattle.

Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam is a Professor of Cooperative Extension in the field of Animal Genomics and Biotechnology in the Department of Animal Science at University of California, Davis.  She received a Bachelor of Agricultural Science from the University of Melbourne in Australia, and both an MS in Animal Science, and a PhD in Genetics from UC Davis. Her publicly-funded research and outreach program focuses on the use of animal genomics and biotechnology in livestock production systems. Her current research projects include the development of genome editing approaches for cattle. She has given over 700 invited presentations to audiences globally, and uses a variety of media to inform general public audiences about science and technology. A passionate advocate of science, Dr. Van Eenennaam was the recipient of the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology 2014 Borlaug Communication Award and the American Society of Animal Science 2019 Rockefeller Prentice Award in Animal Breeding and Genetics. Twitter: @BioBeef.

Dr. Brenda Murdoch is an Associate Professor in the Department of Animal, Veterinary and Food Science at the University of Idaho. Murdoch’s research focuses on characterizing the relationship between genetic variation in mammals and traits which are valued and important to society. She exploits a number of molecular and genetic tools to further improve our understanding of how these variations affect biological processes of both undesirable and desirable phenotypic traits. She holds a Ph.D. in Animal Science from the University of Alberta.

Dr. Patricia Glazebrook is Professor of Philosophy in the School of Politics, Philosophy and Public Affairs at Washington State University. She publishes on gender, agriculture, food security, and climate change in Africa, philosophy of science and technology, and military ethics. Her current research addresses climate impacts and adaptations by women subsistence farmers in Ghana. She has incorporated Ghana Fair in the United States in partnership with the Single Mothers’ Association of the Upper East Region in Ghana to provide livelihood diversification and alternative income, and to support microcredit financing for women in the Region.

Dr. Jason Winfree is Associate Professor in the Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology department at the University of Idaho. His research interests include the economics of market structures, industrial organization, collective reputation, food quality standards, and sports economics.

 

Dr. Jill J. McCluskey is Regents Professor and Director of the School of Economic Sciences at Washington State University. McCluskey’s research focuses on product quality and reputation, sustainable labeling, consumer preferences for new technology, and representation of women in STEM. An award-winning researcher, she is widely published and cited. Her research has been funded by private foundations, NSF, and USDA. An award-winning mentor, she has served as major professor to 46 Ph.D. graduates, many of whom are Professors at major research universities. She is a member of the Board on Agricultural and Natural Resources of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. She is an Editor of the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, past President and Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Fellow of the Western Agricultural Economics Association, and a member of the WA State Academies of Sciences. Her research has been highlighted by various media outlets including the New York Times, National Public Radio, and Newsday. She received her Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of California, Berkeley.

W. Jay Gordon has represented and supported dairy farmers as a lobbyist for the Washington State Dairy Federation (WSDF) since 2001. He served as the Executive Director for 14 years and is currently the Policy Director of the Federation. The WSDF has represented dairy families in Washington on policy and regulatory issues since 1892, making it the oldest active dairy producer trade association in the United States. Washington is home to 410 dairy farmers who employ about 400 people and produce more than $1 billion in dairy products. Jay routinely works with state agencies, national dairy organizations, local livestock and shellfish growers to promote the dairy industry while working to provide solutions for environmental and health issues such as nutrient management regulation, air and water regulation and animal identification. He is a member of the board of the Washington Agriculture Legal Foundation, which protects the legal rights of those involved in agriculture and aquaculture, and is on the advisory board for the William D. Ruckelshaus Center, which serves as a neutral resource to solve complex policy challenges for parties in Washington and the Pacific Northwest.

Jay is a steward of the land and understands that in some cases, farmland and ecosystem protection go hand-in-hand. With funding from the American Farmland Trust, the Trumpeter Swan Society, Capitol Land Trust, and the National Parks Foundation for an easement protecting farmland along the Elwha River on the Olympic Peninsula, Jay demonstrated that grazing cows on this land improved the habitat for swans. Jay and his wife Susan own a seventh generation, 900-acre dairy and crop farm in the Chehalis valley near Elma. Over the years, they have produced a wide variety of vegetables, grains, and forages, as well as milk. They have four daughters.

Amber Adams Progar is an Associate Professor and Dairy Management Extension Specialist in Animal Sciences at Washington State University. She grew up on a dairy farm in Wisconsin, earned a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, a Master’s in Zoology at Oklahoma State University, and a PhD in Animal Science at Texas A&M University. She spent the past 15 years researching animal behavior and well-being, and is an enthusiastic collaborator with dairy industry partners. Her applied research program uses animal behavior and non-invasive measurements of stress in cattle to promote management practices that support animal well-being. She also combines her teaching skills and passion for farming to translate research results into meaningful information for farmers.

March Pub Talk

Science Pub: “Cultivating Belonging in Pullman and Beyond”
March 1st, 2022 | 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Sip your favorite brew, while you learn a thing or two! Science Pub is an opportunity to enjoy learning about science in an informal atmosphere; no scientific background necessary! Just bring your curiosity and a thirst to learn.

There are 2 ways to be at this event:

  1. In Person – Paradise Creek Brewery will be seating indoors at 100% capacity under the Washington State COVID-19 Mask Mandate and the pub talk will be broadcast/projected on a the large projection screen in the pub/restaurant area.
  2. On Zoom – Register for the Zoom Talk HERE. Place a food/drink order for pick up at Paradise Creek Brewery’s Downtown Restaurant – 245 SE Paradise St, Pullman. Local delivery is also available. Mention Science Pub and you’ll be sent a link by text or email to join the event. Tip: Place your order early so it’s ready by Science Pub time.

Please also visit the Facebook event for this talk.

This month’s speakers:

Join Trymaine Gaither and Sophia Gaither on March 1st for their pub talk, “Cultivating Belonging in Pullman and Beyond”.

To belong is also to understand that there is room for us all to strive and flourish across our differences. Trymaine’s talk will cover some of his work throughout the WSU system around mindfulness and anti-racism. Trymaine will end with a discussion about the learning communities happening across the institution. Sophia will talk about Pullman Young Professionals Association and how community members can get involved.

Trymaine Gaither is currently the Special Assistant to the Provost for Inclusive Excellence at Washington State University. He trains faculty and staff in mindfulness-based anti-racism, self-awareness, contemplative pedagogy, and self-compassion practices.

A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, Trymaine Gaither has been in the education sector for 10+ years. His anti-racist work has garnered him awards, the most recent being the 2020 Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Service Award from Washington State University. Through his work with the university, Trymaine has facilitated mindfulness retreats, implicit bias training, and mindfulness-based anti-racism training. Trymaine is also a Certified MBSR (Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction) Teacher and completed his training through the Center for Mindfulness at Brown University. Trymaine currently serves on the Board of Advisors for the Center for Mindfulness at Brown University as well.

As a community organizer, Trymaine served as an appointed Board Member of the Mecklenburg County Community Relations Committee from 2012-2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. In addition, Trymaine led a city-wide “Know Your Rights Initiative,” informing marginalized groups of their rights within policing practices. Alongside his implicit bias trainings of the CMPD police force and continued, he is currently the Co-Chair for the Police Advisory Board for Washington State University. Trymaine attended North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University with a major in Business Management. He spends his spare time exploring the Pacific Northwest with his wife Sophia, six-year-old son Noah, and nineteen-month-old Brycen.

Sophia Gaither serves as the President of the Pullman Young Professionals program under the Chamber of Commerce and Board Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the Association of Colleges and Employers for the Mountain-Pacific region, also known as MPACE.

Formerly the Associate Director and Instructor in the Carson College of Business at Washington State University, Sophia has over 12+ years in higher education teaching, directing, and executing programming and curriculum focused on career competency development, professional development, and navigating the process of becoming. She has served Washington State University within equity and inclusion, advocating for all women faculty, staff, and students as the former Chair of the President’s Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) and former executive member of the Association of Faculty Women.

Her life work focuses on understanding how one’s intrinsic values, ethics, and skills align with ones’ external goals to assist in achieving their personal and professional life plans. She enjoys spending time with her two sons, Noah and Brycen, and life-partner, Trymaine Gaither traveling and experiencing the diverse lands of the Pacific Northwest.