Asec Department Awards
ASEC awarded faculty and staff with departmental awards. Congratulations to all our honorees.
Levon Esters will be traveling across Australia on a Fulbright grant he was awarded in May
Esters will be stationed out of the Univeristy of Southern Queensland in Toowoomba, Queensland on the east coast of Australia. Working with the country's Regional Universities Network (RUN), Esters plans to conduct a study in reginal, rural, and remote (RRR) Australian communities looking at the intersection of agricultural career education and the role it plays in enhancing the postsecondary education and career prospects of youth and adults in the RRR areas.
"I will be intervewing students and educators across different grade levels, parents, business owners, school administrators and university professionals," Esters said. "I want to be fully immersed in these communities."
Neil Knobloch received the national Outstanding Agricultural Educator Award from the American Association for Agricultural Education (AAAE).
Knobloch has made outstanding contributions to agricultural education over the last 18 years, which have affected the quality of life of PK-20 students and teachers by applying scientific principles of learner-centered education to engage in solving grand challenges facing agriculture, food, and natural resources. Since earning his Ph.D. in Human and Community Resource Development at The Ohio State University in 2002, he has taught and researched Agricultural STEM Education systems and chairs the College of Agriculture PK-12 Engagement Council. He is the co-director of the Mentoring@Purdue program that promotes best practices to recruit and retain woman and underrepresented minorities in agricultural STEM majors.
In July, Beth Forbes received the ACE Professional Award from the Association of Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences.
The ACE Professional Award is the highest recognition given by the organization to one of its members. The award recognizes excellence and professionalism in a communicator. It is based on achievements over an extended time.
Forbes is the Director of Science Communication for Purdue Agriculture and a continuing lecturer in ASEC. In her role, she helps staff and students better communicate science information to the public.
Zachary Brown, doctoral student in ASEC, was elected the 2020-2021 National Graduate Student President of Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS).
"I'm excited to represent Purdue and graduate students across the nation as we work to improve the MANRRS experience for current and future graduate students," said Brown. "Sometimes you need to step into leadership to make the changes you want to see."
Brown has served in many roles in the organization since his undergraduate days at Iowa State University. MANRRS promotes academic and professional advancement by empowering minorities.
Liz Alexander, an ASEC master's student, earned the 2020 Purdue Agriculture Graduate Student Pathmaker Award in May
The award recognizes graduate students from the College of Agriculture who have distinguished themselves as effective mentors and peer coaches by unselfishly investing in success of fellow graduate students and /or undergraduate researchers-in-training.
"At the start of my graduate career, I hadn't thought of myself as a mentor," she says. But the turnover and onboarding of new students over three years with one project taught her to create efficient systems the benefited each team member – and herself: "I learned just as much from my peers and from their perspectives when they come in."
Dr. Levon Esters was awarded a national Faculty Mentor of the Year award at the Southern Regional Education Board annual Institute on Teaching and Mentoring in October. Doctoral students Torrie Cropps and Quincy Clark nominated Dr. Esters for the award.
"Dr. Esters works tirelessly, yet effortlessly, at helping students achieve an excellent academic and professional graduate experience," Clark wrote in her nomination letter.
"Because his students speak so highly of him, many Black graduate students from other departments reach out to him for guidance and support," Cropps wrote.
The Institute offers training and support for underrepresented minority Ph.D. students to finish their doctorates and become campus faculty, addressing the nation's continuing shortage of faculty of color.
Dr. Neil Knobloch was honored with the Distinguished Agriculture Teacher Educator Award for the North Central Region from the American Association for Agricultural Education (AAAE) during their conference in October.
The award recognizes Dr. Knobloch's excellence in agricultural teacher education and scholarship.
As Dr. Mark Russell noted in his nomination, Dr. Knobloch "has made outstanding contributions to agricultural education over the last 17 years, which have impacted the quality of life of PK-20 students and teachers by applying scientific principles of learner-centered education to engage in solving grand challenges facing agriculture, food, and natural resources."
Dr. Allen Talbert was named the Indiana Association of Career and Technical Education (ACTE) Post-secondary Teacher of the Year at the organization's state conference on September 21, 2019.
ACTE awards recognize excellence and dedication within the field of career and technical education among ACTE members. The Post-secondary Teacher of the Year Award recognizes the finest career and technical teachers at the post-secondary level who have demonstrated innovation in the classroom, commitment to their students, and dedication to the improvement of ACTE in their institutions and communities.
The Mentoring at Purdue (M@P)Team was recognized with the National Land-Grant Diversity Champion Team Award at the National Land-Grant Diversity Conference on February 7. The team was recognized for their exemplary leadership in advancing diversity and inclusion through inclusive programming, cultural competency initiatives, and community outreach activities.
Team members include: Neil Knobloch, Professor; Levon Esters, Associate Professor; Elizabeth Alexander; Brandon Allen; Zachary Brown; Quintana Clark; Torrie Cropps; Ulyssa Hester; Yujie Huang; Ryan Kornegay
Brandon C.M. Allen received the France A. Córdova Award for Leadership in Action. The Ph.D. candidate initiated a water drive for the citizens of Flint, Michigan; a BoilerUp4 Houston campaign after Hurricane Harvey; and another BoilerUp4 campaign after Hurricane Irma hit Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.
The award honors graduating students who have demonstrated exceptional leadership during their time at Purdue. The students must have held successful leadership roles, working in partnership with staff and faculty to move the university forward, while maintaining a minimum 3.0 grade point average. The award winners receive a certificate, a cash award and their name inscribed on a plaque.
Sarah LaRose and Hui-Hui Wang were selected as Teaching Leadership Award Fellows by the Purdue Teaching Academy and Center for Instructional Excellence. The award fosters the pursuit of excellence in teaching and the development of teaching leaders. It honors those wo serve as advocates for and champions of student success through teaching.
As part of their work, Drs. LaRose and Wang propose to create intentional opportunities for ASEC faculty to actively engage in the scholarship of teaching and learning. To accomplish this, they plan to coordinate a series of workshops and group sessions that focus on helping faculty reach these goals.
Hui-Hui Wang received the 2018 Emerging Faculty Impact Award from the College of Agriculture PK-12 Council.
Wang, an assistant professor of agricultural STEM Education, was honored for her efforts to effectively collaborate with faculty in the colleges of Agriculture, Science, Education, and Engineering. She has developed three curricula to engage PK-12 audiences and trained Purdue Master Gardeners and high school teachers in curricula.
She co-developed a new graduate studies course that instructs students how to teach integrated STEM through agriculture, food, and natural resources. Those students developed and implemented lessons at YMCA afterschool programs and for local Girl Scout troops. Across classrooms, communities, and colleagues, Dr. Wang is a rising advocate of advancing STEM education.
ASEC awarded faculty and staff with departmental awards.
Outstanding Counselor Award: Mark Tucker
Early Career Teaching Award: Linda Pfeiffer
Graduate Mentor/Teacher: Levon Esters
Outstanding Teaching Award: Kathryn Orvis
Outstanding Service to Students: Amy Conrad
Natalie Carroll was presented with the 2018 Frederick L. Hovde Award of Excellence, which honors a faculty or staff member who has displayed outstanding educational service to rural Indiana.
"Rural communities are the foundation of our state, and service to those communities is the foundation of Purdue," said Karen Plaut, chair of the Hovde Award committee and Glenn W. Sample Dean of Purdue Agriculture.
Carroll was recognized for her more than two decades of work with Indiana youth through 4-H and FFA. She has been instrumental in developing 4-H curricula across ten project areas related to natural resources, including entomology, forestry and geology.
Dr. Allen Talbert was one of 45 professors inducted into Purdue's Book of Great Teachers in December.
The Book of Great Teachers honors outstanding teaching faculty who have demonstrated sustained excellence in the classroom.
"The Book of Great Teachers honors the very best of our Purdue educators and underscores our commitment to teaching excellence," said Jay Akridge, Purdue provost. ""We are grateful to the faculty members inducted this year — and in years past — for their devotion to our students, and we thank them on behalf of the countless lives they have influenced through their wisdom and guidance."
Dr. Levon Esters and Dr. Neil Knobloch accepted the National Experiment Station Section's inaugural Diversity and Inclusion Award on behalf of every member of the M@P team.
Mentoring@Purdue (M@P) activities attract not only students, but also faculty and staff members to their many workshops.
"M@P is making a real difference in the College's conversations around diversity and inclusion. It is a model of an effective program and I am glad it is getting the national recognition it deserves as well as the opportunity to help others develop similar programs."
— Karen Plaut, Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture