Faculty, students recognized at awards ceremony

Dunlap, Womack receive Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Awards

Writer: Courtney Coufal, cacoufal@tamu.edu

COLLEGE STATION – Several faculty and students in the Department of Animal Science were recognized at the College of Agriculture and Life Science’s 2015 Awards Ceremony held Sept. 16 in College Station.

Dr. Kathrin Dunlap, assistant professor, and Tasha Womack, undergraduate student, each received Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Awards.

Dunlap received the Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Award for Early Career Teaching. Though early in her career, Dunlap has a long history of excellence in teaching, according to the award nomination.


Dr. Mark Hussey, vice chancellor and dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Dr. Kathrin Dunlap, assistant professor in the Department of Animal Science.

Dunlap earned a doctorate in physiology of reproduction from Texas A&M in 2006, and during this time she served as a graduate teaching assistant. For her efforts, she received the Mauro Prockner Memorial Award, which recognizes excellence in academics and research, patience in teaching, innovation in the laboratory, and quality in writing. After graduation, she received postdoctoral training at the Texas A&M Colleges of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences where she served as an instructor for the Veterinary Integrative Biosciences Histology course. Upon completion of her postdoctoral work, she returned to the Department of Animal Science as an associate research scientist. In this capacity she instructed and supervised both graduate and undergraduate students in the laboratories of two senior investigators and served as a guest lecturer for ANSC 107 Introductory Animal Science and ANSC 433 Reproduction in Farm Animals. She was later named Assistant Research Professor and in addition to her research responsibilities, began teaching a section of Senior Seminar.

In 2013, she was named assistant professor, the position she currently holds. She now teaches the honors section of ANSC 107, and is developing an online section of ANSC 107 which is expected to launch in the summer of 2016. She also teaches ANSC 230 Basic Animal and Research Experience, a course she developed to provide high impact learning experiences for students of a non-traditional agriculture background. This course has become one of the most requested undergraduate courses, as it blends discussion about scientific principles and methodologies with hands-on laboratory activities and interaction with industry professionals, according to the award nomination. She also teaches ANSC 433 Reproduction in Farm Animals.

“In her time as a member of the Department of Animal Science, Dr. Dunlap has facilitated the delivery of courses and undergraduate research projects that are innovative, high impact and rigorous. She never fails to give her students her best effort and they reciprocate. Perhaps the greatest example of her excellence as an educator is that students view her as a mentor and continue to seek her guidance long after completing her class,” according to the award nomination.


Dr. Mark Hussey and Tasha Womack.

Womack received the Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Award in Undergraduate Research. Womack graduated with a bachelor’s degree in animal science in May 2015. During her time as a student, she worked as a student worker for Dr. Clare Gill, professor in animal genomics whose research focuses on beef cattle genomics. Womack helped Gill with white blood cells for long-term storage, and she performed DNA extraction and microsatellite-based parentage testing of the resource population. In her time working for Gill, Womack processed more than 2,000 samples.

In addition, Womack worked as a student worker in the Geochemical and Environmental Research Group. In 2013, she completed a summer internship at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Neb., and worked on a project to characterize the bacterial population in nasal swabs collected from cattle with bovine respiratory disease. As a senior, Womack completed the Undergraduate Research Scholars program under Gill’s direction and wrote a thesis titled, “Characterization of a major locus affecting coat color in reddening in cattle.” In March 2015, Womack gave a platform presentation on her study at the 42nd Texas Genetics Society meeting in Dallas.

Womack began her doctoral degree in pharmacology at the University of Houston this fall.

“Tasha has innate curiosity, a passion for science, loves asking ‘Why?’ and combines all that with a tremendous joie de vivre. Tasha is a natural leader and yet maintains wonderful humility. She has ‘great hands’, an asset for a budding bench scientist. Her honesty and integrity are impeccable. She strives for excellence in everything she does,” according to her award nomination.

In addition to the achievement awards, the following recognitions were made:

  • Dr. Josie Coverdale, associate professor, was recognized as a recipient of the Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Awards for Teaching – College Level.
  • Dr. Wes Osburn was recognized as a Critical Thinking Academy Fellow – The Critical Thinking Academy consists of a group of faculty within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences that will develop and implement strategies for instilling critical thinking in students. Osburn’s is developing an online ANSC 481 Senior Seminar Honors section that is based on developing and applying critical thinking skills to solve complex animal agriculture issues. The goal is for animal science undergraduate students to enhance their ability to ask vital questions, identify and clearly define an animal agriculture issue or problem, gather and assess relevant information, develop well-reasoned conclusions , identify and evaluate other alternatives and is able to effectively communicate the solution.
  • Dr. David Riley was recognized for earning tenure effective Sept. 1; Dr. Andy Herring, Dr. Shawn Ramsey and Dr. Luis Tedeschi were each recognized for earning promotion from associate professor to professor; and Dr. Carey Satterfield was recognized for earning tenure and promotion from assistant professor to associate professor.
  • Haley Collins was recognized as a new faculty member in the Department of Animal Science.
  • Dr. Nancy Ing was recognized as a member of the College Climate Council Members.
  • Undergraduate student Clint Hearn was recognized as vice president of finance for the College Student Council for 2015-2016.


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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