2019 Outstanding Young Alumni Winner Dr. Nicole Sanchez

By Kaitlyn Harkin

Dr. Nicole Burdick Sanchez received the 2019 Outstanding Young Alumni Award during the Department of Animal Science External Awards Program on April 30, 2019. The award was presented to Sanchez by Texas A&M AgriLife Research Faculty Fellow Dr. Thomas Welsh.

Sanchez is originally from Ontario, Canada and grew up in Corpus Christi, Texas. As an undergraduate student at Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Sanchez participated in undergraduate research for 3.5 years under Dr. Jamie Laurenz, while also being an active member of the Javelina Marching Band and Tau Beta Sigma Sorority. She graduated with her B.S. in Animal Science in 2005.

Her work as an undergraduate researcher opened doors for her to pursue a master’s degree in the same
program at TAMU-Kingsville which she completed in 2007. Under the direction of Welsh and Jeff Carroll, Sanchez completed her Ph.D. in Physiology of Reproduction at Texas A&M University in 2010.

In June 2010, she joined the USDA, ARS Livestock Issues Research Unit in Lubbock, Texas as a post-doctoral research associate, and transitioned to a permanent research animal scientist position in January 2013. Sanchez’s research focuses on studying interactions between stress and immunity in cattle and swine, and how changes in metabolism influence these responses. Additionally, she has investigated differences in innate immune and metabolic responses caused by naturally-occurring variations including temperament.

Sanchez has been recognized many times for her research accomplishments, including the Tom Slick Graduate Research Fellowship, the U.S. Senator Phil Gramm Doctoral Fellowship Award, the Vice Chancellor’s Award for Graduate Student Research, and the Association of Former Students Distinguished Graduate Student Award for Excellence in Doctoral Research.

Additionally, Sanchez and her team were awarded the National Pork Board Award for Innovative Research in 2013 and 2016 by the Southern Section of the American Society of Animal Science. Since 2004, Nicole has authored or co-authored two book chapters, 48 peer-reviewed journal articles, 150 abstracts, and 36 technical and proceeding reports.

“She has been a highly productive young graduate and brought positive recognition to our department,” Welsh said. “The trajectory of the early independent phase of her career forecasts that Dr. Sanchez’s future research, education, and outreach efforts will pay even greater dividends for the livestock industry.”


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

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