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From the Dean People are what make the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences an extraordinary organization. Our College is home to an amazingly talented collection of scientists, teachers, research technicians and support staff. I am extremely proud of these people and the work they do. They are spread across our state, working to make North Carolina a better place in which to live.

Bryce Lane, Chancellor Fox and Dean Oblinger

Bryce Lane, left, and Dean Oblinger escorted N.C. State Chancellor Marye Anne Fox on a recent tour of the JC Raulston Arboretum. Lane was interim arboretum director. Since then, a new arboretum director has been named. See related story for details.
But as talented and innovative as our people are, we cannot do what we do alone. It is absolutely essential that we collaborate with other organizations and institutions and form partnerships that allow us to make the most effective use of our talents.

This issue of Perspectives looks at some of our partners and the programs we’re pursuing with them. We are, for example, pursuing an innovative aquaculture effort with Carolina Power & Light. With CP&L’s help, we’ve built a demonstration facility, called the CP&L Fish Barn, at the Lake Wheeler Road Field Laboratory.

Also in this issue, you’ll find an article about a relatively new partner, the prestigious Keck Foundation. An $800,000 grant from the foundation has allowed us to establish the W.M. Keck Behavioral Biology Program. This program may lead to new strategies for controlling agricultural and urban pests and to a better understanding of complex human behavior.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention two of our oldest and most valuable partners — the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and collective county governments throughout the state.

It would take more than an issue of a magazine to recount the many ways we interact with our state’s Department of Agriculture, but one of our more important collaborations is the system of research stations we’ve established across the state. We simply could not do what we do without these indispensable real-world laboratories.

Likewise, the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service would not be the organization it is without the collaboration of county governments and the local governing body on the Cherokee Indian Reservation. It is this partnership with local governing bodies that defines the Cooperative Extension Service.

We’ve focused on just a few of our partners in this issue of Perspectives. There are countless others, and they’re all extraordinarily important because without them, we couldn’t do the important work we do.

JAMES L. OBLINGER
Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences