UF CALS faculty, former students take home NACTA awards

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — University of Florida College of Agricultural and Life Sciences faculty and former students won numerous awards recently at the 61st Annual Conference of the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA).

“The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences has a long tradition of excellence in teaching. NACTA provides a forum where our outstanding faculty are recognized for their contributions to teaching and student development,” said college Dean Elaine Turner.

NACTA Educator Awards went to:

  • Jane Bachelor, a senior lecturer in food and resource economics at the Indian River Research and Education Center in Fort Pierce.
  • Kate Fletcher, a lecturer in family, youth and community sciences.
  • Muthusami Kumaran, an assistant professor in family, youth and community sciences.
  • Bob McCleery, an associate professor in wildlife ecology and conservation.
  • Karla Shelnutt, an associate professor in family, youth and community sciences.

The NACTA Teaching Scholar Award went to Nicole Stedman, an associate professor of agricultural education and communication.

Recent doctoral graduate Cathy DiBenedetto won the NACTA Graduate Student Teaching Award for her work in agricultural education and communication.

There were also awards for peer-reviewed articles. In this case, the Jack Everly Journal Award went to three faculty members:

Chris Estepp, now an assistant professor at Sul Ross State University, who earned his doctorate from UF in agricultural education and communication in 2012.

  • Grady Roberts, a professor in agricultural education and communication.
  • Karla Shelnutt, an associate professor in family, youth and community sciences.

“CALS faculty are actively engaged in the scholarship of teaching and learning. This research advances our knowledge and understanding of the best approaches to pedagogy, which, in turn, enhances our students’ experiences,” Turner said.

The following UF CALS alumni also received NACTA teaching awards:

Graduate Student Awards:

  • Bradley Burbaugh, B.S. in agricultural education (2003); now Clay County Extension director.
  • Tana Dennis, B.S. in animal sciences (2008); now a Ph.D. candidate, Purdue University.

NACTA Educator:

  • Emily Buck; Ph.D. agricultural education and Communication (2006); now an associate professor in agricultural communication at The Ohio State University.
  • Kylee Duberstein; Ph.D., animal sciences (2006); now an assistant professor in animal and dairy science at the University of Georgia.
  • Dean Pringle; M.S. animal sciences (1989); now a professor in animal and dairy science at the University of Georgia.
  • Kari Turner; B.S. animal sciences (2000); now an associate professor in animal and dairy science at the University of Georgia.

NACTA Teaching Scholar Award:

  • David Jones; Ph.D. agricultural education and communication (2006); now an associate professor at North Carolina State University.

The NACTA conference was held June 16-20 at the University of Georgia, in Athens, Ga.

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Cutline: University of Florida College of Agricultural and Life Sciences faculty and former students won numerous awards at the recent conference of the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture in Athens, Ga.

Credit: UF/IFAS

By: Brad Buck, 352-294-3303, bradbuck@ufl.edu

Source: Elaine Turner, 352-392-1963, returner@ufl.edu