News from across Turtle Island

  • Grant awarded for research on oak wilt

    Oak wilt will turn red oak leaves into a dull green or brown. Heavy defoliation accompanies leaf wilting and discoloration.

    Posted on January 20, 2017 3:27pm

    MSU Forestry faculty Monique SakalidisDeborah McCullough and Bert Cregg, along with Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences Academic Specialist Jan Byrne, have been awarded a Michigan Invasive Species Grant to study oak wilt.

  • Five essential community commitments to walkable places

    Downtown Charlevoix. Photo courtesy of the Michigan Municipal League.

    Posted on January 19, 2017 3:18pm

    Effective placemaking is built around walkable places. While much can be done to activate public spaces in places with good urban form, it is hard to sustain if the community does not have a lot of people living there or a convenient way to get them there. There are five essential commitments that communities must make toward walkable places, which are taken from the Land Policy Institute’s guidebook on Placemaking as an Economic Development Tool. They are all essential to creating quality places where people want to live, work, play, shop, learn and visit. Without them, any amount of placemaking will result in underperformance or less-than-desired outcomes.

    Places that have these five components are much easier to engage in placemaking, which can effectively activate a public space. Some of these commitments require planning, investments or regulations, and in some cases, all of the above.

  • Zoning Administrators—It’s a New Year, what do you plan to do differently this year?

    Attendees of the 2016 ZAC Program enjoying the presentation. Photo courtesy of Kurt H. Schindler, AICP, MSUE

    Posted on January 19, 2017 3:05pm

    While many people make personal resolutions during the New Year, it is also a good time for professional evaluation. This is the perfect opportunity for zoning administrators and communities to evaluate office procedures and professional development needs.

    The Zoning Administrator Certificate (ZAC) Program offered by the Land Policy Institute’s Planning & Zoning Center at Michigan State University is a one-stop-shop for both. This is the only course of its kind in Michigan. Specifically designed for all new and current zoning administrators, along with private consultants, state agency field staff and county planners who consult with local Zoning Administrators, this intensive course teaches the fundamentals needed to improve performance, customer service, efficacy of processes and accuracy of information.

    The course runs Feb. 15-16, 2017, at the Hilton Garden Inn in Plymouth. Space is still available and early registration ends on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017, so be sure to reserve your space today!

  • Crop pollination webinar series offers advice from entomologists

    Posted on January 19, 2017 2:51pm

    Experts in crop pollination working under the Integrated Crop Pollination Project will present a series of webinars on “Ensuring Crop Pollination in US Specialty Crops.”

  • MSU student opportunity: student research assistants

    Posted on January 16, 2017 3:48pm

    The Department of Forestry at Michigan State University, in collaboration with multiple industry partners, is seeking two highly motivated green bioproducts student research assistants for Spring and Summer of 2017.


  • MSU student opportunity: social and digital media assistant

    Posted on January 13, 2017 4:36pm

    MSU Forestry is seeking a student assistant to play an active role in developing MSU Forestry’s online presence. The Student Assistant will work with the Communications Coordinator to maintain MSU Forestry’s social media platforms and promote Department programs, courses, activities and events.

  • Medical marijuana law training offered

    Posted on January 13, 2017 3:04pm

    Michigan State University (MSU) Extension is offering training throughout Michigan for local government officials on the new Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act, and related law.

    Mark Wyckoff, senior associate director of the MSU Land Policy Institute and director of the Planning and Zoning Center at MSU, says of the new laws, “There is no right answer other than communities making an informed choice that works for that community. The training will help communities understand these risks and how to evaluate them.”

    Trainings will be held throughout February and March at 11 locations. The workshops run from 6-9 p.m. and Master Citizen Planners will earn three hours of continuing education credits. The cost is $55, or $50 for Master Citizen Planners or those in groups of two or more from the same municipality. Registration ends Feb. 13.


  • Marisol Quintanilla joins Department of Entomology as new applied nematologist

    Posted on January 11, 2017 9:07am

    The Department of Entomology welcomes Marisol Quintanilla as MSU’s new applied nematologist, starting Jan. 15, 2017.

  • Keys to Sparty’s Cabin passed to MSU alumna

    Posted on January 10, 2017 3:14pm

    Sparty’s Cabin — the student-made “tiny home” — has a found a new owner in an MSU alumna. The cabin’s new owner, Debra Levantrosser, was presented with a ceremonial key and quickly realized it was a perfect fit.

    Sparty’s Cabin was constructed by 60 students during the course of six weeks, a product of collaboration between the MSU School of Planning, Design and Construction and several other institutions within MSU.

    After construction was completed, the tiny house was auctioned off through the MSU Surplus store. The bidding ended on Dec. 6, however the winner was not presented with the house until Jan. 6.

  • MSU alumna plans to live in Sparty’s Cabin

    MSU Provost June Pierce Youatt, left, presents the keys to Debra Levantrosser on January 6.

    Posted on January 9, 2017 10:05am

    Sparty’s Cabin has a new owner. Michigan State University alumna Debra Levantrosser is the new owner of the tiny house hand-built by students. The 100-percent livable house complete with a hand-crafted wood counter top, shelves and sliding door has been up for auction since October.


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