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The Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology

Jordan College History

Ag faculty, December 1953

Pictured: Agricultural Faculty, Ag Division, Fresno State College - December 1953, on top of Ag Aministration and Classroom Buildling). Left to Right: Vincent Petrucci, Winston Strong, John Masten, George Ilg, Building Supervisor, Jesse Bell, Wayne Biehler, Lloyd Dowler, Floyd Hixson, Earle Bassett, Robert Glim, Robert Selkirk, Clarence Jensen, O. Martin Braun, Edwin Rousek, Howard Keck, William Smith, William Verdugo (photo by Roullard)


1914 – First agriculture courses included in Circular of Information (catalog)

1921 – George W Graves hired as first full-time agricultural faculty member and named Director of Agriculture at Fresno State Normal School. With PhB degree from University of Chicago (1908) and a M.S. degree from Washington State College (1912), he had “carried on investigations at Kew Botanical Gardens, London; the Jardines Plantes, Paris; and the botanical gardens in Dresden, Amsterdam and Berlin” in 1907.  He had served as a soils instructor at Washington State College (1912); instructor in agriculture and biology at Hanford High School (1915); agriculture supervisor in Los Angeles 1915-1919; instructor in agriculture in the summer session at University of Southern California (1919) and University of California (1921). He also served as a member of the city of Fresno’s park commission).

1922 – Department of Agriculture and Biology formed at Fresno State College with George W. Graves as head and Fred P. Roullard as an instructor in economic entomology (and the latter also served as the Fresno County Commissioner of Horticulture, which was lated renamed agricultural commissioner).

1922 – Courses in the April circular included: Soil Technology, Field Crops, Crop Production, Animal Husbandry (I and II), Poultry Husbandry (I and II), Vegetable Gardening, General Pomology (I and II), Irrigation, Farm Shop, Gas Engines and Tractors, Agriculture Education Methods, Agricultural Project. Students could earn an A.B. degree and special secondary certificate in agriculture by completing 130 units of coursework.  Lower division coursework included psychology, economics, sociology, zoology, botany, English composition, public speaking, hygiene and physical education along with 10 units of electives in chemistry and 12 in agriculture.  Upper division was divided into ‘professional work in education’ (21 units) and 44 units in agriculture. 

1922 – Agriculture Club formed

1923 – Dwight Logan Reid joins the faculty as an instructor in Agriculture and Biology. He is listed with a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin (1915) and master's (1918). He had previously served as head of the Department of Agriculture, State Normal School, Aberdeen South Dakota (1915-1918) and as an associate professor of Agriculture, University of Illinois (1918-1922).

1924 – Circular includes additional courses: Plant Pathology, Principles of Dairying

1925 – Agriculture department becomes stand alone department

1926 – Edward Willard Everett listed as a new faculty member starting in September in the 2027 Circular of Information with degrees from University of California (A.B., 1920) and University of California (B.S., 1921) and prior position as Head of Department of Agriculture, Santa Rosa High School (1921-1926). He is also listed as the District Supervisor of Agricultural Instruction, State Board of Education (and his position was 50% teaching and 50% supervision).

1934 – Five acres of lab land purchased by FSTC north of Van Ness campus botanical garden/horticultural for hands-on instruction (included glass house/lath house)

1935 – San Joaquin Experimental Range (SJER) established  agreement with USDA to study foothill forage and beef production (cattle provided by a private cooperator to USDA Forest Research Service)

1936 – O. Martin Braun, formerly Fowler HS instructor, hired as first full-time vocational agricultural instructor

1937 – 120 acre Millbrook/Shields farm rented by two faculty (Masten and Braun) to establish the Youth Training Program (ca. 1937-1943), which included student projects

1940 – First livestock donation of 12 Guernsey heifers coordinated by local dairyman John Suglian-one of the first community partnerships. Operational expenses were prohibitive and the cows were later sold.

1940 – Winston Strong offered a wide-range of courses to the community and taught English to the Mexican work force brought to San Joaquin Valley to help with production/harvest. Training also included farm mechanics, forging and welding, food processing, milking, vine pruning, chick sexers, and leadership

1942 – Six Counties Agriculture Committee created with support of the Fresno State president. Farmers from San Joaquin Valley met to discuss ag program expansion, and J. E. O'Neill kept the momentum going during the war period.

1942 – First fund raising group established - Citizens' Advisory Committee of San Joaquin Valley prominent citizens/fundraisers established - encouraged by Braun, Masten, Strong and President Thomas, the group addressed a plan to raise money to acquire land and facilities with Fresno State College Foundation overseeing financial matters referred to as Agriculture Project Activities Fund

1945 – Outreach effort - San Joaquin Valley Agricultural Committee outreach effort - "Our Kids Are entitled to an Education Too!" 17-page booklet published by Gerald Advertising

1946 - California's budget provides $45,000 for the purchase of farm land and effort begins to identify land

1946 – Rodeo team added

1947 – MOU between Fresno State College Foundation and the Six Counties Agricultural Executive Committee of San Joaquin Valley.  Notes the committee had raised $325,000 of a planned $500,000 along with “securing the gifts of cattle and other property to the Foundation to be used in the operation” of a school farm.  The MOU notes the committee had purchased 320 acres of land “to be used as the headquarters for said school farm”.  The land, in two parcels, was the area bounded by Barstow and Bullard, Shaw and Chestnut.  

1947 – First Dean of Agriculture named: Eugene A. Egan, who was a faculty member at CalPoly-SLO

1947 – Foundations' College Association General Manager, Art Stofstrom, is placed in charge of Agriculture Department's farm-related business affairs

1947 – Though not yet in the ag organizational structure,  Home Economics and Industrial Education (IA+T) had wide range of courses; no business courses offered yet (per catalog)

1947-48 – Fresno State College acquires 430 acres of the World War II Army Air Corps Base (Hammer Field now Fresno Yosemite International Airport and National Guard base

1947 – Donors' Day event in November recognized contributors and reported on projects at a luncheon at the Fresno State College farm property at Hammer Field.

1947 – Governor Earl Warren approves SB 399 establishing the State College Fund (SCF) also approved AB 181 that appropriated $200K of SCF dollars to Fresno State College in support of development of Hammer Field for Agriculture

1947-48 – Nine new faculty hired including George Ilg (farm manager), Robert Selkirk (dairy husbandry), Robert Glim (farm accounting), E. Ragle (ag mechanics), Edwin Rousek (animal  husbandry), Vincent Petrucci (viticulture), Jesse Bell (animal husbandry, F. Roullard (ag inspection), Lloyd Dowler (poultry). Faculty offices, classrooms and laboratories were located at Hammer Field, Dean's office remained on Fresno State College campus

1948 – Expansion of agricultural program and major development of classrooms, laboratories, student projects commenced

1948 – Bachelor degree in agriculture required 120 units, first bachelor's of science degree awarded.

1949 – Fresno State Teaches College becomes Fresno State College and begins granting bachelor's degrees.

1949 – Fresno State College Bulletin lists the Agriculture Division with 9 program areas:  Agricultural Mechanics, Animal Husbandry, Crop Production, Dairy Husbandry, Dairy Industry, General Agriculture, Horticulture, Poultry Husbandry and Viticulture; 

1949 – Rodeo team officially becomes a campus club (and the first year of the College National Finals Rodeo, which is held in San Francisco).

1950 – Industrial Arts appears in Fresno State College bulletin in place of Industrial Education

1950 – Harry Karle receives first viticulture-related bachelor's degree of science, and continues a 75-year connection to program that includes positions as its first vineyard foreman and later plant science professor, department chair, and assistant and associate dean of farm and mechanized agriculture.

1951 – Dean Egan resigns and Professor Lloyd Dowler appointed new Dean

1951 – Wayne Biehler (agronomy) named first Chair of Plant Science

1951 – State Department of Finance requires Fresno State College Foundation to enter a lease with the State of California due to profits generated by ag projects

1953 – Agriculture Division adds 2 programs:  Ornamental Horticulture and Graduate Studies (11 programs total)

1954 – Farm enterprises move from Hammer Air Force Field to Shaw campus in July

1954 – Fresno State College Agricultural Foundation established to oversee and manage revolving farm related funds and resources through effort of Agriculture Advisory Board/Committee of Fresno State College Foundatio (bylaws adopted 11/04/54 and incorporated 12/2/54)

1954 – Agriculture Division revises curriculum:  removes General Ag, changed to Agriculture; Mechanized Agriculture changed to Agricultural Mechanics 

1955 – 1st, FFA State Executive Committee Meeting (January) held on campus, annual sessions continued here

1956 – Fresno State College reorganization of divisions:   Agriculture, Air Science, Business, Education, Fine & Practical Arts (HE/IA here), Humanities, Life Science (biology), PE,  Physical Science and Social Science

1957 – Fresno State College reorganized one Division:  separated Division of Fine and Practical Arts into 3 divisions:  new Applied Arts Division (includes HE and IA), new Speech Arts and  Fine Arts

1957 – Agriculture majors revised -10 major areas of study were reduced to 4:  Agriculture and Agricultural Mechanics, Animal Science, Plant Science and Graduate programs

1958 – Faculty Winston Strong is granted the first ag instructor sabbatical (James Brownell was his temporary replacement)

1963 – Fresno State College becomes a charter institution of the State College System of California, forerunner of the California State University System.

1963 – Plant Science program revised - shown as Viticulture and Enology 

1965 – Campus divisions were changed to schools resulting in the School of Agriculture 

1965 – Graduate program name changed to Agriculture - Interdisciplinary Graduate program

1968 – Agribusiness program -  officially launched (approximately)

1969 – School of Agriculture renamed School of Agricultural Sciences 

1969 – Lloyd Dowler steps down and returns to instruction, and Othmar J. (O.J.) Burger named Dean

1969 – School reorganization.  Departments of Plant Science; Animal Science; Agriculture Education; Enology; Dairy Industry; Food Science; and Interdisciplinary Graduate Program

1969 – School Honors Convocation became the 1st annual event recognizing individual graduating students on campus.

1972 – Fresno State College assumes its current official name, California State University, Fresno 

1972 – First Turf Day golf fundraiser event for alumni and supporters held Belmont Town and Country Club for approximately 97 players 

1974 – Dudley Little wins men's all-around title at college national finals rodeo event 

1977 – Agriculture Boosters Barbecue is born (first annual fundraiser benefiting ag students and the ag community)

1978 – O. J. Burger steps down as Dean, and Charles M. Smallwood is appointed

1978 – Home Economics joins School of Agricultural Sciences from the School of Professional Studies

1979 – School of Agriculture and Home Economics (SAHE) renamed

1979 – Ag One Foundation established, and board of directors formed (with George Ilg as its first executive director)

1979 – Agricultural Energy and Technology Project (AETP) competitive State grant awarded (leads to establishment of CIT in 1980). The program provided faculty release for research activity

1980 – University reorganized from 10 to 8 schools:  Professional Studies disbanded and Industrial Arts and Technology (IAT) joins SAHE

1980 – Center for Irrigation Technology (CIT) opens, part of AET project (with Ed Norum as its first administrator)

1980 – USAID-BIFAD $500,000 grant received - Dr. Marinus Van Elswyk (Plant Sci) appointed Director of SAHE International Programs/Assistant Dean)

1980 – Sweet corn is planted on campus by a faculty member and students for a test project on campus.

1981 – Center for Agricultural Business conducts First Annual Agribusiness Management Conference

1981 – Agricultural alumnus Kenneth L. Maddy ('57) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

1982 – Fresno State sweet corn is sold to the public for the first time at the farm stand at the corner of Chestnut and Barstow avenues

1983 – Dairy operations moved to current site at northwest corner of Barstow and Chestnut

1983 – SAHE/Office of the Dean hosts American Association of State Colleges of Agriculture and Renewable Resources (deans and US ag administrators) first effort coordinating and hosting a national/annual meeting 

1984 – San Joaquin Experimental Range (SJER):  SAHE acquired management control of SJER per 10-yearr cooperative agreement with USDA-Forest Research Services

1985 – AETP grant ends, and the California Agricultural Technology Institute (CATI) established as SAHE's umbrella for applied research and technology transfer activities. CATI provided the continuum for faculty release time, and it eventually becomes a CSU budget line item ($1 million).

1985 – National award:  Plant Science irrigation program receives $7,000 award for excellence in agricultural technology instruction from the National Assoc of State Departments of Agriculture and the RJ Reynolds Inc

1984 – 25th Year of School Honors Convocation (no other college offered such an event)

1985 – Department of Industrial Art & Technology name changed to Industrial Technology

1985 – Viticulture and Enology Research Center founded by legendary faculty member Dr. Vincent E. Petrucci (who taught at Fresno State from 1948 until 1993)

1986 – SAHE programs revisions:  Agriculture Economics and Education changed when Agriculture Education moved back to Animal Science, becoming Animal Sciences and Agricultural Education)

1987 – Industrial Technology Interior Design program changed name to Graphic & Interior Design (GID)

1987 – Formal organization of a student recruitment team, the Agriculture Ambassadors

1987 – Ag One honors Fred Rau at its first Community Salute event

1988 – School name changed to School of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SAST)

1988 – New Bachelor's of Science degrees: Animal Science (5 options), Food and Nutritional Sciences (5 options), Agricultural Engineering Technology (4 options), and Plant Science (5 options); and Minors in Agri Business, Animal Sciences, Food and Nutritional Sciences, Agriculture Engineering Technology and Plant Science

1988 – University Farm Land Review Committee formed with a group of campus and industry representatives to review and submit recommendations for future direction

1989 – Dietetics Program, Plan V - granted a 10-year operation approval by American Dietetic Association (ADA) and led by Professor Joanne Caid

1989 – Interior Design Option - completed reaccreditation review by Foundation for Interior Design Education Research (FIDER) lead by Dr. Pat Henning-Smith with help from Dr. Gene McCurry and Dr. Nancy Brian

1989 – Advanced Learning Technology (ALT) Project to develop undergraduate curriculum in computer-based learning modules.

1989 – MS in Plant Science:  degree approved with options in Crop Science, Plant Protection and Soils/Irrigation; implementation

1989 – Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM)-an interdisciplinary program funded by a $390K grant for equipment needs, IT Chair Gary Grannis leads the effort. BS degree approved in 1991

1989 – Crop Production and Protection Center discontinued

1989 – FFA Field Day 40th Anniversary:  dedicated to Dr. Charles M. Smallwood, Dean (11 years of dedicated service)

1990 – SAST Seminar Series offered with presentations by faculty, staff and/or industry representatives

1990 – CATI Five-Year Review

1990 – Family Sciences and Home Economics name changed to Department of Child, Family and Consumer Sciences (CFCS), to meet academic program and industry needs

1990 – Equine option (ASAE) developed

1990 – Mechanized Agriculture program converted to Agricultural Engineering Technology (AET), new prefix, to provide better awareness 

1990 – Commercial Arts/Advertising Design program title changed to Graphic Design 

1991 – Industrial Technology B.S. program reaccredited by the National Association of Industrial Technology (NAIT)

1991 – Industrial Arts Master's of Arts Degree changed to MA-Industrial Technology

1991 – California Construction Institute (CCI) approved and established as an  auxiliary unit of the Construction Management program/IT

1991 – Diversity student outreach recruitment effort launched with multicultural grant

1991 – Poultry program reestablished via a cooperative agreement with Zacky Farms and the Agricultural Foundation; Zacky provided facilities, birds and part-time instructor and the foundation provided facility maintenance, feed and student labor.

1991 – Farm Laboratory formally reviewed by internal and external parties

1991 – US Vice President Dan Quayle visited Center for Irrigation Technology hosted by Dr. Ken Solomon

1992 – Agriculture Foundation Board of Governors restructured from 25 members to 7 

1992 – University cutbacks affect  personnel, course offerings, and resources. Enrollment fell 8% and graduate student numbers fell 20%

1992 – Charles M Smallwood retires, and Dr. Daniel P. Bartell appointed Dean

1992 – Industrial Arts MS degree phased out and replaced with MS in Industrial Technology

1992 – Industrial Technology construction management degree approved

1992 – Construction Management program moved to School of Engineering 

1992 – FFA State Leadership Conference proposal submitted to State Department of Education to relocate 4-day state-wide conference to Fresno (formerly at SLO), approval received effective spring 1994

1992 – Faculty retirements reach 7, largest number in a single year since the late 70’s

1993 – Viticulture and Enology Research Center building dedicated (and funded by community and alumni support)

1993 – School hosted the “Trilateral Faculty Exchange Program” with participants from National Chung Hsing University-Taiwan, Kon-Kuk University, and Fresno  State;   theme - “Food Systems and the Environment"

1993 – School Strategic Plan developed

1993 – SAST committee formed to address farm land utilization with administration: softball site (Cedar and Barstow)on table along with a proposed University village  (69-acre parcel on SE corner of the farm)

1993 – Center for Food Science and Nutrition Research, a CATI funded center is proposed

1993 – Stoller Distinguished Professor-the first endowed faculty position in food science proposed

1994 – Bill Jones (‘71) receives Fresno State Alumni Association's first Top Dog Outstanding Alumni Award for the College 

1995 – MS in Agriculture-Food Science and Nutrition option discontinued

1995 – IT department revises programs to include: CAD, CAM, Graphics Communications Management

1995 – IT and Graphic & Interior Design (GID) program and 3 faculty move to School of Arts & Humanities

1995 – IT adds Control Systems Management and Transportation Systems Management

1995 – American Association of State Colleges of Agriculture and Renewable Resources (AASCAR) national meeting hosted in Fresno

1995 – MS in Food and Nutritional Sciences proposed

1995 – SAST established its first Website

1995 – Mechanized Agriculture undergraduate option discontinued

1995 – Distance learning program offered 5 courses, partnership with Chico and Davis campuses

1995 – Department of Plant Sciences and Mechanized Agriculture changes name to Department of Plant Science (still offers mechanized  ag courses)

1995 – Consultant team reviews University Agricultural Laboratory and develops a University Agricultural Land Use Policy

1997 – Fresno State Winery becomes nation's first commercially-bonded winery on a college campus (and the first commercial wine that was bottled and sold was a white table wine named for professor emeritus, Dr. Vincent E. Petrucci). Winery was built with $10 million in state funds and donations.

1997 – Kellogg Foundation funded the California Food and Fiber Futures Project (CF3); led by the UC Davis administration, SAST Dean actively participated with three postsecondary education systems and numerous “stakeholders” to address topics of interest:  consumers, farm workers, inner-city populations, food bank managers, growers, processors, distributors and retailers 

1999 – Agricultural alumnus Bill Jones ('71) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

2000 – The CSU's first combined Department of Viticulture and Enology was created in July. Dr. Robert Wample appointed as department chair and director of the Viticulture and Enology Research Center. 

2001 – Winery's World Cooperage Barrel House was dedicated aging in Hungarian, European and American oak barrels. 

2004 – Ag Communications student Molly Fagundes wins American Farm Bureau National Discussion Title

2005 – Agricultural Business senior Neil Gibson honored as the Fresno State Undergraduate Medalist at campus commencement.

2006 – Daniel Bartell Retires, and Charles Boyer named Dean

2007 – The Water, Energy, and Technology (WET) Center opens on campus to partner with startup and established businesses to launch and/or facilitate the development of practical applications of new technologies.

2008 – Alumnus Nat DiBuduo ('73) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

2009 – College is renamed the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology in recognition of a generous donation of $29.442.516 (with goal of creating a campus agricultural research facility) by the family of the late Hanabul “Bud” Jordan, his wife Dee, and, his brother, the late Lowell Jordan (the largest single cash gift ever given to any California State University). Bud ran a general contracting business in Hayward and Lowell ranched cattle in Dublin, and first started supporting the College based on a friendship with agricultural economics professor Bob Glim. The families spent time together vacationing at motor home rallies, where the Jordans learned about the campus agricultural programs and tasted their products.

2011 – Plant Science graduate student Christine Rainbolt honored as the Fresno State Graduate Medalist at campus commencement

2012 – Plant Science graduate student Marcelo Moretti honored as the Fresno State Graduate Medalist at campus commencement

2012 – Plant Science Club wins its first of many President’s Trophy Contest titles against other most distinguished collegiate agricultural programs from across the nation at the annual Students of Agronomy, Soil and Environmental Sciences (SARES) conference in November. 

2012 – Alumnus Marvin A. Meyers (‘56) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

2012 – Ag Communications student Tino Rossi wins American Farm Bureau National Discussion Title

2013 – Rue and Gwen Gibson Farmer Market Opens on Campus 

2013 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack visits Fresno State (and discusses the Food, Farm and Jobs Bill and comprehensive immigration reform to support U.S. agriculture sector

2013 – Foster Farms Poulty and Education Research Center dedication on-campus as the nation's first humane-certified University poultry facility

2014 – Agricultural Business senior German Alberto Marquez Alcala honored as the Fresno State Undergraduate Medalist at campus commencement

2014 – President's Commission on the Future of Agriculture releases report 

2014 – Charles Boyer retires, and Sandra Witte named Interim Dean

2014 – First Jordan College honors student cohort selected

2015 – Recent ag education graduate Levy Randolph wins American Farm Bureau National Discussion title

2015 – Jordan Agricultural Research enter construction starts

2015 – President's Water Task Force releases report 

2015 – Center for Agricultural Business renamed Institute for Food and Agriculture

2015 – Freshman Brittany Dias wins reserve champion honors in breakway roping in College National Finasl Rodeo  

2015 – Jordan College welcomes record enrollment in fall

2016 – Sandra Witte officially named Dean in March

2016 – Jordan Agricultural Research Center research center opens

2016 – Temple Grandin, animal welfare expert, speaks on campus

2017 – Bee Sweet Citrus Fresh Fruit Packing Line opens on campus (first of its kind in the nation)  

2017 – Plant Science graduate student Touyee Thao honored as the Fresno State Graduate Medalist at campus commencement

2017 – Gibson Farm Market sells an openin day record of 38,586 ears of yellow and white sweet corn

2017 – University Signs Memorandum of Understanding pact with University of Sao Paulo agricultural campus

2018 – Ag education junior Tim Truax becomes Fresno State's third national champion at the American Farm Bureau Collegiate Discussion Meet

2018 – Gibson Farm Market sells an opening, Memorial Day weekend total of 80,766 ears of corn 

2019 – Alumna Jackie Mundt ('09) won the American Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers discussion national title (open to 18- to 5-year-old competitors who won state competitions)

2019 – Colton Campbell wins men's all-around title at College National Finals Rodeo Finals event 

2019 – Fresno State renames dairy unit after Manuel Mancebo Jr. and Katye Mancebo

2019 – Plant Science graduate student Anthony Mele honored as the Fresno State Graduate Medalist at campus commencement

2019 – Dean Witte retires and Dennis Nef named Dean in June

2020 – Fresno State creates temporary lab for coronavirus testing in Jordan Agricultural Research Center 

2020 – Jordan College celebrates over 400 graduates virtually (because of COVID-19 pandemic)

2020 – Department of Child and Family Science moves to the College of Social Sciences for the fall semester

2020 – New dairy diagnostics lab opens in graduate research laboratory thanks to gift by Land O'Lakes 

2021 – Alumnus Marcello Monticelli ('69) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

2021 – Fresno State begins construction on new viticulture greenhouse (and completed in 2022)

2021 – Fresno State hosts combined commencement for class of 2020 and 2021 at Bulldog Stadium 

2021 – Master's of science degree in human nutritional science is offered for the first time by the food science and nutrition department. 

2022 – Agricultural Business alumnus Stephen Were Omamo ('86) named the University's Top Dog Distinguished Recipient honoree   

2022 – The nation's first campus nut processing laboratory is officially unveiled in April, thanks to technology donations coordinated by Western Agricultural Processors Association partners and equipment construction management by Gary Dunn (Wonderful Pistachios) 

2022 – Food Science and Nutrition Department expands its post-graduate dietetic program from a nine-month intnership to also include a master's of science degree

2022 – Dennis Nef announces retirement, and Rolston St. Hilaire becomes Dean in September

 

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