CASNR’s Thayne Montague wins NARRU Distinguished Educator Award
By: Norman Martin
A strong commitment to teaching has garnered a long-time Texas Tech educator and expert in horticulture, viticulture and plant physiology the 2017 Non-Land-Grant Agricultural and Renewable Resources Universities' Distinguished Educator Award, university officials announced today (Oct. 20).
Thayne Montague, an associate professor of horticulture with Texas Tech's Department of Plant and Soil Science and the department's Undergraduate Program Leader, was presented the award at a special presentation earlier this month during a NARRU meeting in Morro Bay, California. Montague also holds a joint appointment with Texas AgriLife Research.
Key quote: "Teaching plant sciences can be a challenge," Montague said. "Many students enter college with an inadequate understanding of our limited natural resources, and how ornamental plants, food, and fiber are produced and benefit our lives. Teaching students helps me fulfill one of my fundamental responsibilities as a scientist: use science based research to gain knowledge, and assist students to understand and apply scientific principles in their lives."
Montague received his bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University and his master's degree from Auburn University. His doctorate is from Utah State University. Since joining the Tech faculty in 1999, his research has focused on physiology, plant/microclimate interactions, and drought tolerance of woody ornamental plants, grapevines, and olives.
Some background: Recent honors for Montague include the Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science J. Creighton Miller Distinguished Educator Award (2017); Texas Tech University President's Excellence in Advising Award Recipient (2015); CASNR Advising Academy Member (2015); and the Texas Tech President's Excellence in Teaching Award Recipient (2013).
"We have great students at Texas Tech University, in our college, and in the Department of Plant and Soil Science," Montague said. "It is a privilege to help educate our students, and prepare them to make well-informed decisions about proper care and management of our limited natural resources."
Quick refresher: Texas Tech has had tremendous recent success in the NARRU Award categories. Among those receiving honors were Courtney Meyers, an associate professor of agricultural communications within Tech's Department of Agricultural Education and Communications (2013); Ryan Rathmann, an associate professor within Tech's Department of Animal and Food Sciences (2014); Erica Irlbeck, an associate professor of agricultural communications within Texas Tech's Department of Agricultural Education and Communications (2015).
Chance Brooks, a professor and associate chair of Texas Tech's Department of Animal and Food Sciences, previously won the Distinguished Educator Award (2016), said Steven Fraze, Interim Dean of Tech's College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources.
According to program officials, the purpose of NARRU is to be a unifying force for all faculty, students, staff, and administrators of agriculture, food, and renewable resource programs at NARRU state-funded public colleges and universities. NARRU promotes excellence in science-based teaching with hands-on experience in conducting responsive, issue-based research and communicating findings to stakeholders and the general public.
CONTACT: Eric Hequet, Department Chair, Department of Plant and Soil Science, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2838 or email@example.com
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Editor: Norman Martin
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