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Welcome Dr. Abigail Borron and Dr. Jessica Holt to ALEC
Dr. Abigail Borron and Dr. Jessica Holt joined UGA, ALEC in January 2015 to lead the Agricultural Communication BSA major.
Dr. Holt earned a Ph.D. in Agricultural Education and Communication, from the University of Florida in 2015. She is from Plant City, Florida. Her background is in print design, photography, and journalism within the agricultural industry. She serves as the undergraduate coordinator for the AGCM major. She loves teaching and engaging with students, while implementing new and innovative teaching strategies to increase student preparedness for their careers. Dr. Holt was awarded the outstanding dissertation for Agricultural Communication by the Association for Communication Excellence in June 2015.
Dr. Abigail Borron earned a Ph.D. in Youth Development and Agricultural Education from Purdue University with an emphasis on communication with underserved audiences. Dr. Borron is from Indiana. She is passionate about culture-centric communication and social justice issues, seeking ways to give voice to underrepresented audiences in the food and fiber industry.
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Leslie Edgar, associate professor and director of the Office of International Programs in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences at the University of Arkansas, has been named assistant dean of the college.
Edgar is now assistant dean for student programs, which includes her previous duties as director of the Office of International Programs in addition to duties as director of the college’s Honors Program. She also remains a tenured professor of agricultural communications in the Department of Agricultural Education, Communications and Technology.
“I am very pleased to have Leslie expand her service to Bumpers College as director of the Honors Program,” said Dean Mike Vayda. “Leslie has involved and worked with faculty in setting the direction of the Office of International Programs, and was cited by search committee members as a caring colleague with great organizational skills. Her appointment enables synergistic opportunities for student research, honors work and international learning experiences.”
Edgar’s responsibilities include curriculum overview, promotion, additional international experience opportunities and increased access to funding.
“In my role as the director of international programs, I have had the opportunity to work closely with our Bumpers College faculty and department heads,” said Edgar, who completed the LEAD21 Class X leadership development program this year. “These working relationships continue to be the highlight of my international programs position. I enjoy working with the departments, faculty and students to assist them in finding success in programs of interest. I look forward to working with students and faculty to increase collaboration, opportunity, partnerships and promotion of our Honors Program.”
Edgar received her bachelor’s degree in animal science in 2000 and her master’s degree in agriculture systems, technology and education in 2002, both from Utah State University. She earned her doctorate in agricultural leadership, education and communications from Texas A&M University in 2007.
Edgar takes over the Honors Program from University Professor of horticulture Curt Rom, who was recently named associate dean of the Graduate School and International Education.
“I appreciate all the work Curt did and thank him for his service as director of our Honors Program,” said Vayda. “His dedication to our students was instrumental to the growth and development of our program.”
MURRAY, Ky. — Dr. Brian Parr has joined the Hutson School of Agriculture at Murray State University in the department of Agricultural Science as professor and Head. Parr, who previously got his start in higher education at Murray State, comes back after 7 years at Auburn University.
Parr is a native of Greeneville, Tenn., and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and his Ph.D in Agricultural Education from Oklahoma State University.
Parr began his career serving 5 years as an Agricultural Education Instructor at David Crockett High School in Washington County, Tennessee. After serving as a Graduate Teaching Associate at Oklahoma State, he served 2 years as an Assistant Professor at Murray State and 1 year as an Assistant Professor at The University of Georgia. During his tenure at Auburn he advanced through the ranks from Assistant to Associate Professor and served as the head teacher educator in Agriculture and assistant department head. He coordinated the undergraduate, master’s, and specialist programs in Agriscience Education and the PhD program in Career and Technical Education.
An award winning researcher and author, Parr was named Author of the Year for the Journal of Agricultural Education in 2006 and 2008 and honored with the distinguished manuscript award for the Southern Region Research Conference in 2014. His outstanding teaching was recognized by the Auburn College of Education with his selection as the winner of the Leishuck Undergraduate Teaching Award in 2013 and he was named the Outstanding Young member of the southern region of the American Association of Agricultural Education in 2011.
As Department Head at Murray State, Dr. Parr succeeds long time faculty member Dr. Dwayne Driskill in coordinating all of the programs in Agricultural Science including Agribusiness Economics, Agricultural Education, Agricultural Systems Technology, Agronomy, Horticulture and Agriscience Technology. The growing enrollment in this department consists of over 350 total students within the Hutson School of Agriculture which has now grown exponentially to over 930 students. Dr. Parr will also be responsible for the administration over the new on-line Master of Science and Agricultural Education Leadership Doctoral programs.