Praise for 2022–23 Outstanding Teaching, Instruction and Advising

Copper wolves on central campus.

Congratulations to the 16 CALS faculty and instructors who received recognition for their commitment to educational excellence. Award recipients were recognized at a University Teaching Awards luncheon and ceremony on April 21 at the Park Alumni Center.

College-only Award Winners

Teacher Award of Merit

This award was created by the teaching and advising committee in 2014 to recognize outstanding teaching at the instructor and lecturer level within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. 

Melissa Merrill, professor and director of undergraduate programs, Department of Animal Science. “I try to teach each student how to articulate their strengths, promote themselves to others, and work to improve on their weaknesses. In each course, I have tried to find different (and hopefully fun) ways to engage the students, incorporate active learning, and have them teach and learn from each other.”

Tommy Stephenson, lecturer, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering. “I strive to provide students with the resources to become competent in the course material and allow them to apply their newly developed skills to an application.”

Outstanding Graduate Student Teacher Award

The award recognizes teaching excellence by graduate student teaching assistants in the college.

Max Hooks, graduate student research assistant, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering. 

“Max went above and beyond duty as a teaching assistant. He is highly motivated and active in our departmental activities. Undergraduate students both admire and seek out Max when they need advice or someone to talk to.”

Outstanding Graduate Instructor Award

The award recognizes teaching excellence by graduate faculty in the college.

Lucie Guertault, assistant professor, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering

“Professor Guertault’s peer reviews confirm she is an effective and engaging instructor. She organizes her classes around well-written learning objectives. Her presentations are engaging and supported by clear communication skills, contact with students, and various resources that appeal to different learning styles.”

Outstanding Club Advisor Award

This award was created to recognize faculty club advisors’ hard work, dedication and selfless effort. The Agri-Life Council selects the awardee.

Latisha Judd, lecturer and advisor for Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS), Department of Animal Science

“Dr. Judd is the backbone of our MANRRS chapter, providing connections and professional development for our members. Her mentorship and compassion have been at the forefront of the chapter and have inspired me to step out and do the same through service and leadership.”

“Throughout the past two years since starting this chapter, I have always looked up to Dr. Judd as a mentor, guiding figure, and constant support.”

University Award Winners

Outstanding Teacher Award 

This award recognizes excellence in teaching at all levels.

 Amy Johnson, assistant professor, Department of Crop and Soil Sciences. 

Student quote: “What sets Dr. Johnson apart from other instructors is her commitment to connecting with her students. Not only do the students feel that they genuinely know Dr. Johnson, but they also value her input. The students look to her guidance for their future and daily lives. She helps students navigate a path for success by being productive employees, critical thinkers, problem solvers, and functioning adults.”

Natalie Cooke, assistant professor and director of undergraduate programs, Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences. 

Student quote: “Dr. Cooke supports my academic and career goals. She genuinely cares about my questions and concerns and never fails to provide a quality answer to any question, whether big or small. Dr. Cooke is well-rounded in all aspects of advising, teaching and mentoring.”

Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor Award

This award is supported by the NC State Alumni Association and is coordinated by the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost and the Office for Faculty Excellence. It is one of the most prestigious undergraduate teaching awards at NC State.

Julianne Treme, teaching associate professor, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. 

Student quote: “When I think of all the professors I had at NC State, Dr. Julianne Treme was by far the most intentional and engaging. The work and care she puts into designing each course are unmatched. It’s rare to find a professor as thoughtful and hardworking as her. Creating enjoyable courses while retaining a high level of rigor is challenging, yet Dr. Treme does an exemplary job. I am thankful to have had her for so many classes.”

University Undergraduate Academic Advising Award Winners

Faculty Advisor Award

This award recognizes an advisor whose primary responsibility is teaching and who spends a portion of their time providing academic advising services to students.

Shweta Trivedi, teaching professor and director of VetPAC, Department of Animal Science

Carrie McLean Award

This award recognizes an outstanding administrator overseeing an NC State advising area.

Erica Kosal, associate teaching professor and director of the Life Science First Year program, Department of Biological Sciences

CALS Nominees for Other Awards

Alumni Association Distinguished Graduate Professorship Award 

  • K.S.U. Jay Jayaratne, professor and state leader for Extension evaluation, Department of Agriculture and Human Sciences

Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor Award

  • Praveen Kolar, professor, Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering 

Board of Governors

  • Gabriel Keith Harris, professor and director of undergraduate programs, Department of Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Science

New Advisor (Primary Role Academic Advisor)

  • Natalie Trebilcock, Life Sciences First Year academic advisor, Department of Biological Sciences

NACTA Educator Award

Provost Award for Excellence in Teaching 

  • Lynn Worley-Davis, teaching assistant professor and director of undergraduate programs, Prestage Department of Poultry Science