Texas AgriLife Vice Chancellor’s Awards

COLLEGE STATION –Several animal science personnel were honored with the 2010 Vice Chancellor’s Awards in Excellence presented during an awards ceremony held March 25, 2011. The Vice Chancellor’s Awards recognize outstanding achievements by faculty and staff in Texas AgriLife agencies.

Donna Witt – Student Counseling and Relations

Donna Witt, senior academic advisor in the Department of Animal Science, received the 2010 Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for student counseling and relations.

A senior academic advisor since January 2006, Witt is an active student recruiter and is responsible for new student and transfer student conferences. From working with freshmen registering for classes to discussing future career opportunities with the seniors, she makes student excellence and success a priority.

Witt also communicates internship and employment opportunities to undergraduate students and coordinates a writing-intensive course for students who participate in research directed by animal science faculty members.

Lisa Slay – Technical/Extension Support, On-Campus

Lisa Slay, research assistant, was presented the 2010 Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for technical/extension support, on-campus.

Slay’s technical support for the beef cattle nutrition program contributes significantly to its collaborative research activities. She manages an extensively funded laboratory, keeps multiple projects proceeding on time, and routinely trains undergraduate and graduate students on laboratory techniques and research protocols. A colleague noted that the way Slay executes her vital duties “has enabled project scientists from several disciplines to collectively bring significant recognition” to Texas AgriLife Research and the Texas AgriLife Extension Service.

Bridges to the Doctorate in Reproductive Biology Leadership Team – Diversity Award

Drs. Fuller Bazer, Tom Spencer and Guoyao Wu, all professors in the Department of Animal Science, were among the team members of the Bridges to the Doctorate in Reproductive Biology Leadership Team to receive the 2010 Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for diversity. 

Other members of the team are Dr. Gregory Johnson, veterinary integrative biosciences; Dr. Gary Newton, Cooperative Agricultural Research Center, PVAMU; and Dr. Michelle Garcia, TAMU-Kingsville.

The faculty members of this multidisciplinary team of researchers and educators are committed to increasing the participation of underrepresented minorities in biomedical research. Team members from three institutions (Texas A&M University, Prairie View A&M University, and Texas A&M University-Kingsville) and one agency (Texas AgriLife Research) have recruited minority students to join their laboratories. They foster student development with mentoring from the team’s faculty members and access to specialized laboratories and animal resources at all three campuses. A former student said “I can sincerely say that I would not be pursuing a Ph.D. in animal science if it were not for the outstanding support and guidance provided by the entire Bridges to the Doctorate team.” Another student noted, “I have been fortunate to have many mentors and positive associations that have resulted in my love for research.”


For more information regarding news from the Department of Animal Science, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Texas A&M University, please contact Courtney Coufal at cacoufal@tamu.edu or (979) 845-1542.

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