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Title: CALS connection
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Title: CALS connection
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Creator: University of Florida -- College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
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    Table of Contents
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        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
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Full Text

of Florida


Volume 8, Fall 2007

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National Champions

Faculty Profiles

CALS goes

Club Corner:
Block and Bridle
Hosts Nationals

Offering Students

Student and Faculty

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2 CALS Connection


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e Dean

Design and Layout
and Editor in Chief
Allison Eckhardt

Assistant Editor
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Dr. Elaine Turner

Fall 2007 3

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UF is a champion on and off of the playing field. CALS is home to
many teams and individuals who have won national recognition for
their outstanding work. Here we highlight three stories out of the
many winners that CALS has to offer.

Five-time Bowl Champions
by Michelle Diaz

F forget about the Tostitos Bowl, Quiz
Bowl is where it's at.
The food and resource econom-
ics department is no stranger to winning
national competitions, such as the North
American Academic Quiz Bowl. The North
American Academic Quiz bowl is held at the
national meeting of the American Agricultural
Economic Association.
One of those winners is Alicia Taylor. She
is the veteran contestant on the UF team this
year, competing for her third time in July.
"The Academic Quiz Bowl is in a double
elimination-Jeopardy format," Taylor said.
"Each school brings two teams of three to the
In order to prepare for the Quiz Bowl, partic-
ipants take a one credit course over the spring
semester and practice going over questions National FRE Quiz Bowl winners Dustin Bass, Kevin Johnson and David Ortega
from past competitions, said Dustin Bass, a with their adviser Dr.James Sterns in 2005.
contestant and a master's student in the food
and resource economics department. marketing, management, quantitative and potpourri (a mixture of
"A lot of preparation still takes places outside of school," Bass the other seven categories).
said. "Contestants are encouraged to work independently or in "Our advisor does a wonderful job of preparing us for these
small groups." national competitions," Taylor said. "We are all looking forward
Questions are divided into eight categories: microeconomics, towards this year's competition."
resource/policy, macroeconomics, agricultural business/finance,

Professor is two-time national champion

by Angelina C.Toomey

At the University of Florida,
Gators sports teams aren't the
only ones celebrating multiple
national awards in the same year.
Gail Kauwell, a registered dietitian and
professor in the food science and human
nutrition department, has received national
recognition from both the American
Society for Nutrition and the American
Dietetic Association in 2007.

Kauwell, who believes teaching is more
than just a 50-minute lecture, said she felt
a lot of extra responsibility upon learning
she won the awards.
"It was very exciting, but at the same
time, I feel a lot of extra pressure and
responsibility to live up to the expecta-
tions that come with recognition like this,"
she said.

Kauwell is the second recipient of
ASN's Excellence in Nutrition Education
Award, which began in 2006, as a way
to recognize outstanding contributions to
teaching nutrition. She received $2,500
and an engraved plaque, sponsored by
Wadsworth-Thompson Corp. Kauwell
received the Dietetics Education award
from the American Dietetic Association
on September 30, 2007.

4 CALS Connection


UF Students offered Golden Opportunities
byAllison Eckhardt

Charlie Nealis, right, and Dr. Lori Unruh Snyder, second from right, discuss weeds with
students on the 2007 Crops Travel Course. Snyder was paired with Nealis as his mentor
through a national program.

n 2006, four UF students were
selected as Golden Opportunity
Scholars with the Crop Science
Society of America (CSSA). Charlie Nealis,
Anna Flaig, Danielle Alderman and Casey
Reynolds were among 15 students picked
from throughout the United States.
The Golden Opportunity Scholars pro-
gram was founded in 2005 as part of the
CSSA's 50th anniversary. This program
identifies students with great potential in the
crop science field and pairs them with men-
tors who share similar interests. Students
attend lectures, round table discussions and
the CSSA annual meeting.
Charlie Nealis, a master's student in
Agricultural Education, has been partic-
ipating with CSSA for four years. The
Golden Opportunity Scholars has provided
a chance for him to meet professionals from
throughout the world and learn about their

Nealis was paired with Dr. Lori Unruh
Snyder, from the UF agronomy d
ment, now of the Purdue agronomy d
ment, as his mentor.
"The Golden Scholars program has given
me a great opportunity to learn froi
mentor. I was able to gain hands-on e
ence as the teaching assistant for the Croj
Travel Course for Dr. Snyder," Nealis
"Serving as a teaching assistant confirm
how much I enjoy working with students
and also opened my eyes to experiences that
are available to me other than teaching."
Dr. Snyder said that the goal of the pro-
gram is to strenghten the future of crop sci-
ence by encouraging and helping students.
"Helping Charlie explore his career
options has been very rewarding," said
Snyder. "I know he has a bright future
ahead of him."

K1- professor receives recognition tor puDiic service
by Katelyn S. Crow

One University of Florida profes-
sor has used his knowledge and
research to aid those in need
and has been nationally recognized for his
Carlton Davis, Ph.D., distinguished ser-
vice professor inthe food and resource eco-
nomics department, was inducted into the
George Washington Carver Public Service
Hall of Fame at Tuskegee University in
Tuskegee, Ala. on December 6, 2006.
The award recognizes individuals who
exhibit outstanding public service and mir-
ror the works of Dr. George Washington
Carver. Historically, only those from 1890
land-grant universities were inducted into
the Hall of Fame. It was not until the 1970s
that individuals from 1862 land-grant uni-
versities were inducted.
"Currently, there are not very many
inductees from 1862 land-grant universi-
ties and I am honored to represent UF,"
Davis said.
Davis joined UF in 1970 as the second
black professor. Since that time, Davis has

worked to recruit black students and fac-
ulty. He even helped draft the first affirma-
tive action plan at UF
"I have been a magnet for recruiting
African-American students, going back
as early as the 1970s," Davis said. "I feel
I am required to recognize diversity as a
Davis said that he feels it has been his
contributions to minorities and research of
rural poverty that got him recognized.
"I try to bring focus and attention to
minority issues in the south, especially
poverty," Davis said. "Poverty is much
more severe in the South."
Originally from Jamaica, Davis has stud-
ied rural poverty across the Caribbean and
throughout the southern United States.
Davis said that his passion for agricul-
tural economics began his senior year of
high school while living in Jamaica.
"My professor informed me that all the
Jamaican economic literature was written
by ex-patriots, no natives were involved,"
Davis said. "It was at this point that I

decided to become an agricultural econo-
mist and give something back."
Davis came to the United States to seek
his postsecondary education because no
agricultural economics programs were
available in the Caribbean.
He received both his bachelor's and
master's degrees in agricultural econom-
ics from the University of Nebraska.
Davis later completed his doctoral degree
in agricultural economics from Michigan
State University.
While traveling the Caribbean col-
lecting research information, Davis met
Kenneth Tefertiller, former chair of the
food and resource economics department.
Davis said it was Tefertiller who informed
him about UF.
"That's how I got here," Davis said.
"I've been carrying the banner for UF
both domestically and internationally ever
since that time."
Davis plans to retire December 31, 2007
after 37 years at UF.

A Former Faculty Member is Remembered

An adviser, a faculty member, a cook, a husband and a
father. These are just some of the roles that long-time
animal sciences professor Dr. Don Rex Sloan will be
remembered for.
In August 2006, Sloan passed away at the age of 62. He was a
professor and undergraduate adviser in the department of animal
sciences in the College of Agricultural
and Life Sciences.
"Don had a caring heart for the stu-
dents," said Joel Brendemuhl, assistant
chair and undergraduate coordinator in
the department of animal sciences.
Brendemuhl said that Sloan made him-
self available to his students at all times,
even after his regular office hours. Sloan
also was actively involved in helping
"He did a lot of fundraising for the Dr. Don Sloan, right, an
Poultry Science Club," Brendemuhl said. Commencement in the
When an organization needed help, he
would always lend his cooking skills,
Brendemuhl said. His specialty was chicken.
Sloan was not only the expert in cooking chicken, but he was also
a professor of poultry science. Sloan's specialization was in poul-
try nutrition and he enjoyed talking with students about his field of
study, said Sarah Kelley, an undergraduate in animal sciences.
"I met him as a freshman," Sarah Kelley said. "I'm interested in


By KellyAue
avian exotics, and he talked to me about poultry science."
Kelley then became interested in poultry science and worked
with Sloan while he was a faculty member of the Midwest Poultry
"When I think about Dr. Sloan, I remember how he genuinely
cared about the students," Kelley said.
She said students could always bring
their troubles to him. He listened to the
students and would tell them a light-
hearted story to lift their spirits. Sloan's
students valued his opinion.
"He really enjoyed it," Betty Jo Sloan
said, wife of Sloan. "He was called to be
a teacher."
He was also the chief commencement
marshal for the University of Florida's
graduation ceremonies.".
Dr.Jimmy Cheek at "He took graduation seriously," Mrs.
spring of 2006. Sloan said. "This was the chance for the
parents to see what their kids have done
and accomplished."
Sloan was well-respected by his peers, industry leaders and
students. Sloan had many accomplishments while he was at the
University of Florida, and he was an integral part of the college.
Sloan performed many roles while at the University of Florida
but will be remembered as someone who cared for his family, fac-
ulty and students.

6 CALS Connection

CALS Faculty Impact the Agriculture Industry Globally
by Sara Shepherd

T he University of Florida's involved have donated more than 1,000
College of Agricultural and Life overhead projectors and transparencies to
Sciences faculty are helping col- Egyptian agricultural faculty.
lege faculty in Egypt and India to better "You have to understand the learning
prepare their students for careers in their environment over there," Washburn said.
agricultural industries. "They may have lights, but not all of them
For three years, CALS faculty have have light bulbs and they lack teaching
been teaching workshops to Egyptian fac- equipment."
ulty both here in the US and abroad. The Washburn also said that agricultural fac-
India endeavor is just beginning and still ulty in Egypt often have to overcome unin-
in the planning stages.
The Egypt project is
the Institutional Linkage
Component of the Egypt
Agricultural Exports and Rural
Income Project. It is being
implemented by the Midwest
Universities Consortium for
International Activities.
The Egyptian endeavor is
divided into three areas: build-
ing capacity, increasing agri-
culture exports and enhancing
"UF has been involved inthe
capacity-building endeavor,"
said Shannon Washburn,
agricultural education and
communication assistant pro-
fessor. "That means we have
been helping Egyptian uni-
versity faculty build teaching
Mainly, professors from
the agricultural education and
communication department
have been working one on one
%\ ilh E'vptian faculty through
various workshops, said
CALS dean Kirby Barrick.
"Within the capacity-
building, areas of greatest
need are being addressed," Dr.Washburn, pictured here in Egypt, believes the Extel
Barrick said. "They are agri- has an obligation to help other countries.
cultural business, animal sci-
ences and horticulture."
"We have been helping the college of terested and poor performing students,
agriculture faculty in Egypt restructure because students scoring high on place-
courses and learn the basics of teaching ment exams are put in areas outside of
and learning processes and syllabus devel- agriculture, while the lower-scoring stu-
opment," Washburn said. dents are placed in agriculture, Washburn
To help facilitate better instruction, said.
Washburn said that the universities


The reason CALS faculty are heav-
ily involved with Egyptian agriculture is
because of Florida's similarities in cli-
mate, soil and agricultural industries,
Washburn said.
In addition, Egyptian college faculty
have taken the skills learned through the
workshops, and have taught 150 high
school agricultural teachers these same
skills. The Egyptian faculty did this
through a three day work-
shop where CALS faculty
assisted heavily during the
first workshop and gradually
decreased to no assistance
during the final workshop.
"The point of the work-
shops is to help Egyptian
faculty be self-sustaining,"
Barrick said. "We don't want
them to be dependent on us
to improve their agricultural
"I believe that we have
an obligation as Extension
agents as well as a moral obli-
gation to help," Washburn
said, "especially if that coun-
try wants to be helped."
In the India endeavor,
nine projects have been pro-
posed and CALS faculty will
be involved in two of those
"UF's Water Institute and
soil and water science depart-
ment will be helping India
in those respective areas,"
Barrick said. "India's popu-
lation is growing rapidly and
is facing safe and abundant
water problems."
on Service The Water Institute fac-
ulty will be assisting India's
agricultural faculty develop
a program for safe and abun-
dant water, and the soil and water sciences'
faculty will help prepare university gradu-
ates for agriculture and natural resource
sectors of India, Barrick said.

Fall 2007 7

If students have problems, CALS has Solutions

by Christy Windham

Dr. Barrick talks to some of the student participants of the fall 2006 Solutions Seminar.

Making decisions, managing
stress and taking classes are
all problems that college stu-
dents can face. Now, some of those prob-
lems can be resolved by attending the
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences'
new Solutions Seminars.
Solutions Seminars are day-long con-
ferences once a semester to address issues
students may be facing as well as provide
leadership training to enhance the college
"CALS Solutions Seminar was very
beneficial for students to learn about
career preparation, job searching, time
management and healthy lifestyles," said
seminar participant Brian Estevez, agri-
cultural leadership graduate student.

During the summer of 2006, CALS stu-
dents participated in an advisory board
that helped pick seminar topics.
"The board attempted to choose confer-
ence topics that would benefit and relate to
students from across all majors and depart-
ments within the college," said advisory
board member and food and resource eco-
nomics major Jason Beutke.
The advisory board helped to shape the
format for the seminars and decided that
the fall seminar would be focused around
helping students find balance in their life,
and the spring seminar would be centered
about preparing students for job oppor-
tunities, as well as answer any questions
about enrolling in graduate school.
During both the fall and spring seminars
held at the UF Hilton, workshop present-
ers were brought in from across the state
to share their business and life skills.
"The speakers were phenomenal," said
sophomore Chanelle Strammer, a family,
youth and community sciences major.
9, "I'm very thankful to the college for
< making this opportunity available."
While students may have been
impressed with the speakers, the

seminars are intended to assist with basic
student needs.
"Solutions Seminars are conferences
that are intended to address everyday chal-
lenges that students face and equip them
with the tools needed to confront those
challenges," said former CALS student
development director Chris Vitelli.
As conference participant Raul
Obcemea noted, sometimes challenges
can be as simple as expanding one's social
"The seminars helped to get me out of
my comfort zone," said Obcemea a food
and resource economics junior. "They
really helped to build me as a person."
Conference participants were treated
to a catered lunch and door prizes that
included memberships to Gainesville
Health and Fitness Center and registration
to a John Maxwell leadership conference.
For students who did not attend, they
will get another opportunity, as Solutions
Seminars will continue next year.
"The first CALS Solutions Seminars
proved to be a worthwhile experience for
all who attended," said CALS Dean Kirby
Barrick. "It looks like Solutions will be a
permanent addition to our student devel-
opment program in CALS."
The next Solutions Seminar is sched-
uled for October 6, 2007. Check the
CALS website, www.cals.ufl.edu, for
future events.

8 CALS Connection

"University of FioridaSenjUiZA&

UF's Block and Bridle Club hosts national convention

by Sara Shepherd

Students from the UF chapter of Block and Bridle.

The University of Florida's Block and Bridle Club hosted
more than 600 students from around the country at the
2006 National Block and Bridle Convention in Orlando
in January 2007.
The participants, interested in animal science careers, met
for three days of professional development and networking
In order to make this convention a suc-
cess, Tim Marshall, former UF Block
and Bridle advisor, credited the excel- i rv
lent planning work done by UF's chapter
members. Lui
"The club had to plan the entire con- th
vention, beginning with the bid to host the
convention, which was done three to five t
years ahead of time," he said. "We had to -e
book the resort, organize transportation for t
the guest speakers and the tours, develop
the Web site, everything." r
For this conference, UF's Block and
Bridle Club wanted to expose participants
to the many facets of Florida's agricultural
industries. Members did this by organizing
a finger food reception where representatives from across the state
set up booths to highlight their respective agricultural industry.
"The finger food reception was set up as a trade show with
representatives from Florida's different agricultural industries,"
Marshall said. "It provided a unique opportunity for the partic-
ipants to network with professionals from the animal sciences
Ashley Crowe, last year's UF Block and Bridle president, said
it was important to expose students to Florida agriculture because



most students think of main tourist attractions such as Disney
World when they think of Florida.
The club also arranged for key professionals to speak at this
year's convention. Some of them were Florida's Commissioner of
Agriculture Charles Bronson; JoAnn Smith, the first woman pres-
ident of the National Cattlemen's Association; and Trent Loos, a
sixth-generation farmer from Nevada and
agricultural spokesperson.
To enhance participants' career devel-
Sa opment, UF's Block and Bridle invited
other guest workshop presenters who
Pire covered many topics including urban
T i encroachment, equine industry employ-
t h ment, and Collegiate LifeKnowledge, a
training program for building society-
Sf ready graduates.
-a ie-n s "Having professionals from the live-
stock industry was a great networking
opportunity because it is a field where net-
TIM MAR : working is essential," said Jessica Murphy,
UF Block and Bridle vice president.
The most exciting part of the con-
vention was the agricultural tours, both
Murphy and Crowe said.
The club arranged for tours to be held from as far south as Fort
Pierce to as far north as Ocala and covered many industries such as
cattle, horses, citrus, eco-tourism and forage research.
"My tour went to the Adams Ranch in Fort Pierce and another
farm in Okeechobee," Crowe said. "It was interesting to see the
different management practices in the different parts of Florida."

Fall 2007 9

Student Awards

The student and faculty awards were presented at the 2007
Scholarship and Leadership Awards Banquet held April 13, 2007.

Larry J. Connor Medal of Excellence
Justin Silvestre

Justin Silvestre graduated in May
2007 with a degree in Food Science
and Human Nutrition and a minor
in Business Administration. He was
a National Hispanic Merit Scholar
and his honors thesis focused on the
expression of inflammatory cytok-
ines and chemokines during zinc defi-
ciency. His thesis research was under the direction of Dr. Bobbi
Langkamp-Henken. Justin was a 2006-2007 University Scholar
and Anderson Scholar. Justin plans on continuing his education
at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine.
In his spare time, he enjoys outdoor activities such as camp-
ing, hiking and canoeing. He also plays tennis and soccer

Alumni and Friends Leadership Award
Tolulope Adebanjo

ToluAdebanjo from Orlando, Florida,
graduated in May 2007 with a major in
Food Science and Human Nutrition;
specializing in Nutritional Sciences.
Tolu was selected as the Outstanding
Senior in the Nutritional Sciences
Department, as well as an Outstanding
Graduating Student Leader. She served
as the Student Government Cabinet Director of Health, Co-Chair
of the Student Health Advisory Board, and a member of Florida
Cicerones. Additionally, Tolu was a member of Florida Blue
Key, Order of Omega and SAVANT Leadership Honorary. She
was in the 2006 University of Florida Homecoming Court, and
she was the 2006 Black Student Union Homecoming Queen.
In the past she has held the role of vice president of her soror-
ity, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., assistant director of the
Student Government Agency, Students Taking Action Against
Racism and Executive Assistant for Black History Month
2006. Tolu aspires to obtain a combined MD/MPH degree and
research health disparities.

J.Wayne Reitz Medal of Excellence
Outstanding Senior Award
Trevor Smith

Trevor Smith is from Plant City,
Florida and graduated in May 2007 with
a major in Food Science and human
Nutrition; specialization in Nutritional
Sciences. Trevor was actively involved
in the Alpha Epsilon Delta prehealth
honor society where he has served in a
director position and was also heavily involved in the Chemistry
Outreach Program. As a University Scholar, Trevor conducted
research on guava fruit and its effects on colon cancer under the
supervision of Dr. Susan S. Percival in the Food Science and
Human Nutrition Department. Over the past year, Trevor has
served as an Ambassador for the college where he has had the
opportunity to share with other students the wonderful oppor-
tunities available through CALS. He will be attending the
University of Florida College of Medicine in the fall of 2007.

E.T.York,Jr. Medal of Excellence
Outstanding Junior Award
Robert Regenhardt

Robert Regenhardt is majoring in
Food Science and Human Nutrition. He
is a member of CALS Upper Division
Honors program, Golden Key, and the
UF premedical chapter of the American
Medical Student Association, where
he organized and directed the twelfth
annual Health Career Convention. As a University Scholars
student, Robert is conducting undergraduate research investi-
gating possible mechanisms that may account for changes in
lymphocyte subpopulations within the zinc-deficient colon. He
volunteers many hours in the Emergency room and Radiology
Department at North Florida Regional Medical Center. Over
the past two years, he has served as a mentor to sixth-grade
students working on science projects at Westwood Middle
School. Robert gained admission to the Junior Honors Medical
Program, an accelerated BS/MD track.

I0 CALS Connection

Faculty Awards

Graduate Teacher/Adviser of the Year
Dr.Timothy G.Taylor

Dr. Timothy G. Taylor is a professor
in the Food and Resource Economics
Department. He is also an adjunct pro-
fessor in the Warrington College of
Business Adminstration. He received a
B.A. in Economics from the University
of Cincinnati, and earned the Ph.D.
in Agricultural Economics from the
University of Florida. Dr. Taylor strives to treat his graduate
students as if they were his own children and takes great pride
in their accomplishments.

Undergraduate Adviser of the Year
Jennifer E. Gove

Jennifer Gove is the Coordinator
of Academic Programs for the
Department of Family, Youth and
Community Sciences, and has served
in that role since 2003. As Coordinator
of Academic Programs, Ms. Gove man-
ages the department's advising pro-
gram through coordination of over 400
students and nine advisers, and ensures that every student is
assigned to an individual adviser. She keeps students up-to-date
through undergraduate and graduate student listservs, handles
course scheduling and registration, and assists with curriculum
revisions. She also meets with prospective students and orients
new students to the program.

Undergraduate Adviser of the Year
Dr. Peggy R. Borum

Dr. Peggy R. Borum is a professor in
the Food Science and Human Nutrition
Department and has a dual appointment
in the Department of Pediatrics.
Dr. Borum teaches and advises under-
graduate and graduate students and con-
ducts research on carnitine metabolism.
In 2000 she created the InvestiGators, a
unique student organization devoted to research, teaching and
service. The InvestiGators allows undergraduates to experience
the real world of translational research as a member of one of
three teams. Team members work collaboratively to plan and
conduct their research activities and report on outcomes. Forty
to fifty students have been InvestiGators at any one time dur-
ing the past year, and spend at least 15 to 20 hours each week
on research activities.

Undergraduate Teacher of the Year
Dr.James L. Gibson

As an assistant professor of
Environmental Horticulture at the West
Florida Research and Education Center
Dr. Gibson places a high priority on
teaching the 'why' and the 'how' to
merge science with practical hands-on
applications. He regularly connects stu-
dents with professionals for work expe-
rience and internships. Dr. Gibson also sponsors undergraduates
in his research program, allowing them to contribute to a vari-
ety of research projects, many of which are later presented at
national meetings and published as popular press articles.

Undergraduate Teacher of the Year
Dr. Sandra B.Wilson

Dr. Wilson co-teaches a state-wide
web-based plant propagation course and
is director of the Indian River Research
and Education Center teaching gardens.
She has developed new courses and has
creatively used technology to enhance
her teaching. Dr. Wilson developed a
web-based virtual plant identification
interface to help students learn plant material and landscape
principles in different seasons and geographic locations. Her
digital materials on plant propagation and greenhouse education
are used nationwide. Dr. Wilson has received over $270,000 in
grant funding for innovative course improvement and has pub-
lished and presented her teaching scholarship widely.

Jack L. Fry Graduate Teaching Award
Nick Fuhrman

Nicholas E. Fuhrman completed
the Ph.D in Agricultural Education
and Communication in August 2007,
working under the direction of Dr.
Howard Ladewig. He received B.S.
and M.S. degrees in Forestry from the
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State
University in 2002 and 2004, respec-
tively. Nick is also the recipient of the UF Graduate Teaching
Award given by the Graduate School, and a national teaching
award given by the North American Colleges and Teachers of
Nick contributed extensively to teaching in the College of
Agricultural and Life Sciences. He has accepted a faculty posi-
tion at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Fall 2007 1 I

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University of Florida
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
P.O. Box 110270
Gainesville, FL 32611-0270


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