A New Generation of Faculty


This summer has seen a boom in new faculty, and several searches are underway. As more senior faculty retire, the average service time for UTIA faculty continues to decrease. When large groups of faculty retire, the Institute is faced with issues of finding adequate mentors, loss of institutional memory, and a break in traditional client links. These retirements also mean that UTIA is seeing an increase in the percentage of pre-tenure faculty. Considering new faculty who have come to UTIA from 2015 through new faculty positions planned to be filled into fiscal year 2019, UTIA will have between thirty-five and forty new faculty members. With these changes, 40 percent of all faculty with an AgResearch appointment will be pre-tenure. In addition to new faculty, UTIA can expect new partnerships and new research projects. Here’s the rundown on recent changes in UTIA departments:

Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics
2016—Carlos Trejo-Pech (80R, 20T), Agriculture Finance
2017—Jada Thompson (80R, 20T) Agriculture Production Economics
2017—Sreedhar Upendram (25R, 75E) Community Economics & Business

Searches underway:
Blasingame Chair of Excellence in Agricultural, Food, and Natural Resources (50R, 35E, 15T)
Farm and Financial Management (100E)

Future searches:
Agriculture Production and Market Economy (75R, 25E), Greenhouse/Nursery

Department of Animal Science
2015—Ky Pohler (80R, 20T), Reproductive Physiology
2015—Phil Myer (85R, 15T), Nutritional Physiology
2015—Oudessa Kerro Dego (85R, 15T), Dairy Health
2015—Jason Smith (85E, 15T), Beef Cattle Nutrition Specialist
2015—Jennie Ivey (100E), Equine Specialist
2017—Liesel Schneider (65R, 35T), Genomics
2017—Elizabeth Eckelkamp (100E) Extension Dairy Cattle Specialist

Searches underway:
Reproductive Physiology (85R, 15T)
Animal Genomics, Distinguished Professor (85R, 15T), AS/CVM Position
Animal Genomics (70R, 30E) , AS/CVM Position

Department of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science
2015—Nour Abdoulmoumine (100R), Biomass Conversion
2016—Sindhu Jagadamma (100R), Soil Management

Future searches
Soils (70R, 30E)
Soils (30E, 70R)
New faculty line (TBD)

Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology
2018—Bode Olukolu (90R, 10T), Plant-Pathogen Genomics

Searches underway
Extension Specialty Crops Plant Pathologist (100E)

Future searches
EPP (100R)
Conversion of Research Associate Professor to tenure track (100R)

Department of Food Science
2016—Vermont Dia (70R, 30T), Food Chemistry
2016—Curtis Luckett (70R, 30T), Sensory Science
2016—Tom Denes (100R), Food Microbiology
2016—Scott Lenaghan (85R, 15T), Food Parasitology
2017—John Mufano (100R), BioActive Foods
2017—Tao Wu (75R, 25T), Food Carbohydrate

Current searches
Food Engineering (70R, 30T)

Future searchers
Food Microbiology (60R, 40T)

Department of Plant Sciences
2016—Avat Shekoofa (75R, 25E), Crop Physiology
2017—Virginia Sykes (25R, 75E), Variety Trials