Rotarian John Frischie (l.) hosted guest speaker Donya Lester (r.) at the Rotary Club Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Lester, who is the Executive Director of the Purdue Agriculture Alumni Association, is also the Director of Engagement for the Purdue College of Agriculture.  She said that she devotes 75% of her time equally to each endeavor which would suggest that she either has poor math skills or that she is very busy. Since she had just returned from Washington D.C. where she was a member of a committee that was expressing the concerns of land grant colleges to our representatives and senators in regard to budgeting, my guess is that it's the later. 

Actually, things at Purdue's College of Agriculture are going well.  The current department enrollment has reached a high of 3,289 students.  This represents roughly 8% of the 39,256 students at Purdue's West Lafayette Campus.  The fall freshmen enrollment was 499 students and the graduate student enrollment has increased to 631.  Eighty percent of the undergraduate students in agriculture are from Indiana.

The Purdue College of Agriculture has a track record of developing innovative products and programs not only for here in the United States but also for countries that struggle to provide sustenance for their inhabitants. Thus, the recent $65 million anonymous donation to the College of Agriculture, the largest donation in Purdue's history, makes good sense . It also makes good sense that the donation is without restrictions.  That gives the experts in the Purdue College of Agriculture the flexibility to tackle problems they deem to be the most urgent and seek solutions that will be the most beneficial.

Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club