Aeriel Belk and Courtney Boykin, M.S. students in the Meat Science Section in the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University, received the Z.L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science on Friday, March 10, 2017. The award is named in honor of Dr. Zerle L. Carpenter who began his career at Texas A&M University as an assistant professor of animal science in 1962. Dr. Carpenter rose to become full professor of animal science in 1971, head of the Department of Animal Science in 1978, and director of the Texas Agricultural Extension Service (now the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service) in 1982. In 1988, he was named associate vice chancellor for agriculture for The Texas A&M University System. Dr. Carpenter retired in 1997 after providing leadership for the Extension Service for 15 years.
Aeriel is from Fort Collins, Colorado and received her undergraduate degree from Colorado State University. She has served as a graduate teaching assistant for ANSC 307, “Meats,” DASC 326, “Food Bacteriology,” DASC 327, “Food Bacteriology Laboratory,” and ANSC 317, “Meat Selection, Evaluation, and Grading.” Aeriel has been a substitute lecturer and lecture assistant for ANSC 307 Honors, “Meats,” and ANSC 307, “Meats.” Her master’s work has focused on Salmonella presence in bovine lymph nodes, and she has assisted with many meat science and food safety research projects during her time at Texas A&M University. Aeriel’s service effort has included assisting with Beef 101, Pork 101, Beef 706, Camp Brisket, Barbecue Summer Camp, Introductory HACCP Course, Beyond Basics HACCP Workshop, and Enforcement Investigation and Analysis Officer training. Two leadership activities she has been involved with has been the Animal Science Graduate Student Association, as the Meat Science Section representative, and as the Animal Science representative to the Graduate and Professional Student Council serving as the Marketing Committee member. Aeriel is completing her M.S. degree under the direction of Matt Taylor and Jeff Savell.
Courtney is from Pflugerville, Texas and received her undergraduate degree in animal science from Texas A&M University. She has served as a laboratory instructor and lecture assistant for ANSC 307, “Meats” and ANSC 337, “Meat Merchandising.” Courtney was the assistant coach for the Texas A&M University Meat Science Quiz Bowl Team in 2016. In addition to assisting in a wide variety of meat science and food safety research projects, she led the carcass characteristic assessment portion for the National Beef Quality Audit — 2016 providing leadership for the overall project. Courtney’s involvement in extension/service programs include Kroger Boot Camp, Zoetis Beef University, Pork 101, Beef 101, Beef 706, Grass-fed Beef Conference, Texas Association of Meat Processors Annual Convention, Camp Brisket, Barbecue Summer Camp, Introductory HACCP Course, Texas Aggie Meat Processing School, Texas Aggie Creative Sausage Making School, Texas 4-H Ambassadors, and Brahman Youth Association. She is completing her M.S. degree under the direction of Jeff Savell.
Congratulations to Aeriel and Courtney for receiving the Carpenter Award for 2016.