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AFS Spring Awards Banquet highlights academic, extracurricular performance

Outstanding student academic and extracurricular performance was in the spotlight Saturday (April 14) during the Texas Tech Department of Animal and Food Sciences’ Spring Awards Banquet at the McKenzie-Merket Alumni Center. According to program officials, more than 300 students, faculty, staff, parents and supporters attended the annual event.

Among the evening’s highlights was presentation of individual trophy belt buckles and national flags flown over the U.S. capitol for each member of the department’s 2011 national championship meat and livestock judging teams. Individual awards to members of the teams were also given.

The Meat Judging Team awarded:
• Doug Hardison Memorial Outstanding Judge Award – Jerra McMath
• Markus F. Miller Spirit and Motivation Award – Drew Cashman
• 1996 Team Scholarship Award – Dakotah Williams
• Katie Robinson Perseverance Awards – Faith Jurek and Natalee Smith.

The Livestock Judging Team awarded the Jerry Hawkins Memorial Livestock Judging Award to Kody Lucherk. The Equestrian, Ranch Horse, Horse Judging, Meat Science Quiz Bowl, and Wool Judging Teams were also recognized.

The evening also recognized outstanding individual performances. Among those honored were:
• Outstanding AFS PhD Student – Sara Gragg
• Outstanding AFS MS Student – Clayton Cobb
• Bob Albin Graduate Research Awards – PhD: Sara Gragg (1st), Jasprettn Singh Sandhu (2nd), Tyson Brown (3rd). M.S.: Aaron Jennings (1st), Tanner Young and Matt Vaughn (2nd), Jake Elder (3rd).
• San Antonio Livestock Exposition Graduate Student Award – Aaron Jennings
• Outstanding Meat Science Graduate Student – Sydney Knobel
• Outstanding Department Senior – Loni Woolley
• Outstanding Senior Academic Achievement Awards – William Clay Burson, Brandi Capps, Adam Copeland, Abagale Cowden, Paul Crabtree, Kristen Dunn, Clayton Gardner, Kody Lucherk, Jerra McMath, Logan Pritchett, Brady Ragland, Cody Sultenfuss, Tyler Vogel, Jessica Webster, Emily Wolter, and Loni Woolley.
• Senior Leadership Awards – Teryn Bibb, Adam Copeland, KatieRose McCullough, Markus Miller, Nathan Reeves, Jessica Webster, Emily Wolter, and Loni Woolley.

Separately, Block and Bridle Club awards included Outstanding Freshman, Brittany Blum; Outstanding Sophomore, Valerie Manning ; Outstanding Junior, Mandy-Jo Laurent; Outstanding Senior, Loni Woolley; and Workhorse Award, Loni Woolley. Block and Bridle officer recognition went to Loni Woolley, President; Mandy-Jo Laurent, Vice-President; Mai Lee Holmes, Secretary; Kody Lucherk, Treasurer; Senee’ Foster, Historian; and Jason Welborn, SORC Representative. Ag Council Representatives were Valerie Manning, Jase Powell, Joel Riedel and Tyler Neuman.

Written by Moriah Beyers

CONTACT: Leslie Thompson, chairman and professor, Department of Animal and Food Sciences, Texas Tech University at 806-742-2805 ext. 224 or



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