To most people who use the online virtual world of Second Life, the character named Beyers Sellers seems like a typical virtual person. He’s dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, he has a cottage by the beach with a boat nearby. Few would suspect that the man behind this creature is Prof. Robert Bloomfield of the Johnson School of Management.
Beyers Sellers also has a huge magic box on his virtual property that allows him to create a number of different buildings, including a one-room school house. Bloomfield plans to use such a structure this semester to host virtual lectures as part of his class, NMI501: Business and Oversight in Second Life.
In an effort to keep the study of traditional farming progressive, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has instituted a new major, agricultural sciences, which will combine the study of agriculture with other disciplines, allowing some CALS students to broaden their undergraduate education.
“I think that sometimes studies in agricultures are though of as being somewhat narrow or focused on a certain job outcome or discipline,” said Associate Dean Jan Nyrop. “But this allows a broader mix of education background for people who may not be looking [to work] on a farm but instead in other industries with a broader agricultural base. In short, it’s agriculture with a liberal arts bent.”