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APLU, AASCU and USDA Give University of Georgia and Oklahoma State Faculty National Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences

November 15, 2015

Indianapolis, IN – The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities today named Terence J. Centner of the University of Georgia and Garey A. Fox of Oklahoma State University, along with five regional and two new teacher awardees, 2015 recipients of the Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences. The awards, which honor university faculty for their use of innovative teaching methods and service to students, were presented at the 128th APLU Annual Meeting now underway in Indianapolis, Indiana.

In recognition of their scholarship, exemplary pedagogy and dedication to instruction, the annual awards include stipends of $5,000 for the national winners and $2,000 for regional and new teacher honorees to be used for improving teaching at their respective universities.

The five regional awards were given to W. Marshall Frasier of Colorado State University and Timothy D. Paine of the University of California, Riverside in the Western region; Foy D. Mills, Jr. of Sam Houston State University and Patricia K. Smith of Texas A&M University in the Southern region; and Alan C. Hansen of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in the North Central region.  Courtney A. Meyers of Texas Tech University and Jennifer R. Strong each received best new teacher honors.

“Educating students and inspiring young minds is at the very heart of public universities’ mission,” said Ian Maw, Vice President of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources at APLU.  “The impact that educators have on their students can last a lifetime and these awardees have helped their students realize their aspirations and serve as an inspirations to fellow educators.”

Details on the 2015 recipients of the Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences follows:

Terence J. Centner, University of Georgia
The centerpiece of Terry Centner’s teaching involves engaging students in their education through rigorous coursework and a variety of assignments. In teaching his agricultural and environmental law classes, he employs the Socratic Method. Students learn how to formulate responses to questions, observe how others handle challenging inquiries, and prepare themselves for their future careers.  

A leader in curriculum development, Centner proposed and helped develop three majors, three minors, one certificate, and an accelerated bachelor’s and master’s program. He is a founding member of a planning subcommittee that developed an online agricultural and environmental law certificate program for AG*IDEA, a national consortium offering online programs.  Centner is a national expert in agricultural and environmental law. The trademark protection for Georgia’s Vidalia Onions resulted from his research efforts.

He earned a B.S. from Cornell University, J.D. from SUNY at Buffalo, and LLM from the University of Arkansas.

Garey A. Fox, Oklahoma State University
Known as an inspirational and innovative educator, Garey Fox teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on surface water, groundwater, and their interaction. Fox currently holds the position of professor and Buchanan Endowed Chair in Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering at Oklahoma State University (OSU); he also serves as the Oklahoma Water Resources Center’s director and Berry Endowed Professor.

Fox has an exemplary record in curriculum development and outcome assessment, student recruitment, retention, advising, and mentoring students. His teaching and research programs are intricately linked through conducting and publishing teaching-related research on curriculum and program assessment; organizing and hosting an annual, nationwide Student Water Conference; hosting a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates; and advising undergraduate research scholars.

Fox received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Texas A&M University and a Ph.D. from Colorado State University.

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