Clay Eastwood, a PhD candidate in the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University, received the ANSC Award for Outstanding PhD Graduate Student, at the Animal Science Awards Banquet on Thursday, April 26, 2018. This is the first year for this award with selection criteria based on evidence of excellence in academics, research, teaching, and service/outreach.
Clay has been recognized many times for her accomplishments during her graduate program. Most recently, she received the Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for Graduate Student Teaching in 2018, and she received the Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Award for Graduate Teaching in 2016. Clay was honored with the Association of Former Students Distinguished Graduate Student Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2014, Clay received two graduate student awards: the Ronnie L. Edwards Graduate Student Teaching Award, in recognition of her important contributions as a graduate student to the undergraduate student experience, and the Z. L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science, presented annually to a graduate student who demonstrates outstanding leadership skills and has contributed significantly to the Meat Science Section’s teaching, research, and extension activities. Finally, Clay received the Gamma Sigma Delta Outstanding Graduate Student Award and was inducted into the Gamma Sigma Delta International Honor Society of Agriculture.
Clay is from New Braunfels, Texas and received both her Bachelor’s degree (2011) and Master’s degree (2014) in Animal Science from Texas A&M University. She is currently finishing her PhD focusing on fresh meat quality, food safety, and sustainability under the guidance of Dr. Jeff Savell and Dr. Kerri Gehring in the Department of Animal Science. Clay has taught ANSC 307, Meats, and has served as a graduate teaching assistant for ANSC 437, Livestock and Meat Marketing and ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue for several semesters during her graduate career. These classes provide students with intensive hands-on learning opportunities related to their field. In addition, Clay has coached the Meat Science Quiz Bowl Team, which required her to recruit and train each team to compete nationally.
Congratulations to Clay for her receiving this award and for her passion for teaching, research, and extension/outreach!