Auburn University

Auburn University

A new policy has banned smoking on the campus of Auburn University.

Four campus groups passed resolutions to ban smoking on campus and officials say the ban will go into effect on Aug. 21.

Auburn University student Liz Howerton told the newspaper that most students she's talked to are supportive of the idea and that it "can only do good for the campus."

Lee Bradberry, who owns a nearby cigar shop, says he applauds the school's concerns for public health but has misgivings about the policy because he thinks it infringes on individual rights.

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New agriculture statistics prepared for Alabama counties reveal that agriculture, forestry and related industries have an annual economic impact in Alabama of $70.4 billion.

The study was conducted by Auburn University and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. It shows that the Alabama counties that receive the greatest economic impact from agriculture are Mobile, Cullman and DeKalb.

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  More than 800 students from 60 colleges will be at Auburn University this weekend for a national event known as the "Landscape Olympics."

Auburn's team of 40 students will show off their skills in 28 events, including tree climbing.

The National Collegiate Landscape Competition attracts recruiters from 50 companies, including Caterpillar and John Deere. They will be at Auburn scouting for the nation's top prospects during the event.

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A new study of Alabama's agricultural and forestry industries says they contribute more than $70 billion annually to Alabama's economy and account for 22 percent of the state's workforce.

The Alabama Agribusiness Council and other groups joined Gov. Robert Bentley in releasing the study Tuesday.

Bentley said the last similar study was done in 1989, and the new study by Auburn University shows how important agriculture and forestry are to Alabama's economy.

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The Auburn University Board of Trustees has approved two men for positions on the board.

The Opelika-Auburn News reports (http://bit.ly/WCL75N) that the board made the decision during a meeting in Montgomery Thursday afternoon.

Mike DeMaioribus was approved as the District 8 trustee; and Wayne Smith was approved as an at-large trustee.

The 58-year-old DeMaioribus is the senior vice president at Dynetics Inc., a Huntsville-based company that specializes in intelligence, missiles, aviation and space.

Auburn University officials are considering offering a graduate-level degree in brewing sciences.

The degree is among issues expected to be discussed at the school's board of trustees meeting Feb. 1.

The Opelika-Auburn News reports (http://bit.ly/10IX8Fe) that the program would provide graduate-level coursework for students and professionals interested in learning about brewing, including malting, mashing, brewing and fermentation.

The trustees are also expected to discuss a possible graduate-degree program in turf grass management.

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bleacherreport.com

A tentative trial date has been set for Harvey Updyke Jr., the man accused of poisoning the Toomer's Oaks at Auburn University with a powerful herbicide during Auburn's national championship run in the 2010 football season.

Updyke is scheduled to appear in court April 8. A hearing will also be held Feb. 13 to discuss pending motions — which include a request by the Lee County District Attorney's Office to revoke Updyke's bond.

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Auburn University is seeking input from students, faculty and residents on what Toomer's Corner should look like if the iconic oak trees have to be destroyed after they were poisoned.

The Opelika-Auburn News reports (http://bit.ly/11bFHSk) that feedback is being sought in the form of an online survey from now until Jan. 18.

Dan King, assistant vice president for Auburn's facilities department, says officials at the university are being proactive in developing a future plan in the event that the trees must be taken down.

AP Photo/Opelika-Auburn News, Vasha Hunt, Pool

Attorneys for Harvey Updyke say the University of Alabama fan is mentally competent to stand trial on charges of poisoning Auburn University's landmark oak trees.

But the lawyers said Thursday that Updyke still plans to use an insanity defense to fight the charges.

Attorney Margaret Brown told a judge in Opelika that Updyke's mental condition at the time of the offense is an entirely different question than his competency now, about two years after the incident.

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Auburn has fired coach Gene Chizik.

Auburn announced Sunday that Chizik was dismissed two years after leading the Tigers to their first national title since 1957. The Tigers closed with a 49-0 loss to No. 2 Alabama that was the second-most lopsided Iron Bowl game ever and worst since 1948.

The move came after a 3-9 season without any Southeastern Conference wins. It was the most losses by an Auburn team since an 0-10 season in 1950.

Chizik had three years left on a contract worth $3.5 million annually. The announcement came after a team meeting.

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