Office of Student Research Undergraduate Research Mentorship Excellence Award
The Office of Student Research is pleased to announce the recipients of the Undergraduate Research Mentorship Excellence Award. Students were asked to nominate faculty and discuss the specific qualities that made their mentor a perfect candidate for the award and explain how their mentor affected their undergraduate education at Appalachian. Nominated Faculty members were then evaluated on their consistent track record of mentoring undergraduate students as well as supporting and encouraging students to present and publish their research or creative endeavors. Many of the Faculty nominated are often role models in their field.
In 2020 the Office of Student Research awarded two Mentorship Excellence Awards.
Dr. Howard Neufeld
Professor in the Department of Biology
Dr. Neufeld has over 20 years of experience working with students in research. Not only does Dr. Neufeld encourage his students to “get their hands dirty” in research projects but he tries to also make research exciting and fun. One of his student’s stated, “He encourages students to challenge themselves in their research, yet always respects life's random circumstances and obstacles.” Additionally, the student discusses the importance Dr. Neufeld felt about the dissemination of research, “He always has encouraged our ability to not only conduct science but to be able to communicate it effectively, something I strongly carry with me into my future with science.”
Dr. Megen Culpepper
Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Fermentation Sciences
In her relatively short career here at Appalachian, Dr. Culpepper has certainly started a strong mentorship program among her students. She has mentored 21 students since arriving at Appalachian in 2014. Dr. Culpepper believes students learn best by doing. One of her nominators stated, “She strives to make sure everything is learned correctly and then pushes you to always do better.” Dr. Culpepper does more than just mentor in the lab, she provides career advice. As her nominator also stated, “She's helped give me insight and advice about graduate schools and the application process, she's taught me laboratory techniques and the science behind them which has in turn made my classes that much easier”.
A point of pride for Apppalachian is the number of faculty mentored student research and creative endeavors that occur on campus and the Office of Student Research is pleased to acknowledge the hard work of both of these faculty members and many others that were nominated.
Congratulations to Dr. Neufeld and Dr. Culpepper!