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By Andy Eubank – Jan 17, 2016 Need to Stay Ahead on U.S. Transportation System Facebook Twitter SHARE Facebook Twitter SHARE USB transportationThe United States is the world’s leading soybean producer, and right now it has the rivers, roads and rails to move all those soybeans from field to market. However, this status might be in danger without continued investment in the U.S. transportation system.Soy checkoff farmer-leader Bill Beam from Pennsylvania was part of a checkoff-funded mission to see Brazil’s transportation infrastructure first hand.Beam says the amount of investment Brazil is putting into improving its infrastructure is staggering.“I guess as an American producer, it’s pretty obvious that you know we got some serious competition down there which I don’t think that’s surprising anybody, but I was surprised at the sheer amount of investment in everything as far as infrastructure.”Brazil’s infrastructure is still not as good as the United States. But through investments, it will not take long to catch up. This adds to the need to ensure the U.S. transportation system is well maintained.For more information on the importance of U.S. farmers maintaining their competitive advantages through transportation, visit WWW.UNITEDSOYBEAN.ORG. Home Indiana Agriculture News Need to Stay Ahead on U.S. Transportation System Previous articleBeekeepers Sue EPA for Not Regulating NeonicsNext articleAvian Flu Strikes Indiana Turkey Farm Andy Eubank
Harvard’s used and surplus lab equipment is finding new life in laboratories in the developing world through the efforts of a former graduate student and two groups of current students who collect, organize, and ship beakers, centrifuges, and other items to where they’re needed.The effort, undertaken by the students and fellows at Harvard’s Longwood and Cambridge campuses, diverts equipment that would otherwise find its way into the waste stream. Instead, it is collected, cleaned, cataloged, and then sent through a nonprofit organization begun several years ago by a Harvard grad student to underequipped labs in developing nations.“I started working in a lab my freshman year, and I didn’t realize how much I took for granted,” said Denise Ye, a Harvard College senior, molecular and cellular biology concentrator, and a founder of the Harvard College student group. “[Disposable] pipette tips — I’d throw out a box of them a day — I didn’t know that labs in Africa reuse them.”Ye and fellow senior Xun Zhou, a chemistry concentrator, started the undergraduate student group during their sophomore year, modeling their organization after a similar one operating on Harvard’s Longwood Campus. Both groups work closely with Seeding Labs, a nonprofit launched by then doctoral student Nina Dudnik, who began collecting surplus lab equipment while studying molecular biology in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.Dudnik said she became aware of the desperate needs in overseas labs when she worked as a Fulbright Fellow in the Ivory Coast before coming to Harvard in 2001. While in Africa, she worked on agricultural development in a lab that was so poorly supplied that it was common practice to wash, dry, and reuse “disposable” plastic test tubes for as long as three months.She suffered a case of laboratory culture shock when she came to Harvard, and she recalls walking the halls at night seeing discarded equipment left outside the lab doors to be picked up for disposal.“It’s a waste stream at most universities, and it’s not a waste stream that anyone is paying attention to,” Dudnik said. “People are buying new equipment all the time.”Robert Gogan, associate manager of recycling services for the University’s Facilities Maintenance Operations, said the students’ efforts, together with Seeding Labs, provide a second life for equipment.“Seeding Labs is a wonderful example of a group that has succeeded in recovering resources that aren’t state of the art for use at Harvard, but are still useful to others,” Gogan said. “Nina tells me that the used microscopes, centrifuges, and freezers we have picked up from Harvard laboratories are extremely helpful in the South American and African labs to which they have been shipped.”To aid the effort, the University provides storage space in Allston and Longwood, and the equipment is shipped several times a year. Gogan expressed gratitude to the Allston Development Group of Harvard Real Estate Services and Harvard Habitat for Humanity, which let the student organizations use their warehouse in Allston.The equipment — 140,000 pounds shipped so far — is most often used but still serviceable. Often it is being replaced by newer and faster models, or, in the case of something like pipette tips, was overordered and is sitting unused in supply closets. Older equipment is a welcome addition to faraway labs.“The equipment that is most commonly used, it’s most likely to be surplus, but it’s also most likely to be needed overseas,” said Amanda Nottke, a graduate student in Harvard Medical School’s departments of Genetics and Pathology and an organizer of the Longwood effort.Though there is a constant stream of donated equipment coming in from working labs, Nottke said more arrives when a laboratory moves or closes and discards equipment it no longer needs. In those cases, working labs get first dibs on equipment, but there is often plenty left over and unwanted. Seeding Labs maintains an online database and allows overseas institutions to build a “wish list” for equipment they particularly need, Nottke said.Seeding Labs does charge a small fee for the equipment, about a tenth of what it would cost to purchase, Dudnik said, which augments funding from foundations and individuals for the nonprofit’s operations. Though Dudnik has reached out to other universities, Harvard’s many laboratories in Cambridge and Longwood still provide the bulk of material sent overseas.Though giving a second life to lab equipment is the heart of the effort, relationships established along the way are leading to scientific and cultural exchanges as well, Nottke said. In the fall, Harvard Medical School’s Genetics Department and Massachusetts General Hospital’s Molecular Biology Department will sponsor student “ambassadors” who will travel to Kenyatta University in Kenya for several weeks as part of an exchange that will promote cultural as well as scientific understanding.Nottke said the ambassadors, who haven’t been named yet, would be asked to blog about their experiences and make presentations upon their return.
John Mulaney & Nick Kroll in ‘Oh, Hello on Broadway'(Photo: Joan Marcus) Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 22, 2017 View Comments Oh, Hello on Broadway Oh, Hello has extended its Broadway run once again and will now play through January 22; it had previously been set to shutter on January 15. Nick Kroll and John Mulaney’s half-scripted, half spontaneous Great White Way debut was originally scheduled to run through January 8 at the Lyceum Theatre.Helmed by Alex Timbers, Oh, Hello centers on Gil Faizon (Kroll) and George St. Geegland (Mulaney), two outrageously opinionated, 70-something, native New Yorkers that the pair first began playing on the alternative comedy stages in NYC. Honed for over a decade, the fictional duo garnered a cult following and found their way onto a Comedy Central special, viral videos and late night couches everywhere.Oh, Hello is Gil and George’s “memoir for the stage”—a laugh-a-minute, two-man tour-de-force that’s totally unprecedented. Tina Fey, Seth Rogen, Ben Platt, Alex Brightman and Josh Groban are just a few of the stars Gil and George have welcomed to the stage during the run.As recently announced, the Olivier-winning The Play That Goes Wrong will begin performances at the Lyceum Theatre in March 2017. Related Shows