Category Archives: Feature

ALEC department mourns loss of professor emeritus Dr. James Christiansen

Dr. James E. Christiansen, professor emeritus at Texas A&M University (TAMU) in the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications (ALEC), passed away, Wednesday, Aug. 8. Christiansen was 87 years old, just three weeks shy of his 88th birthday, September 1. Christiansen began his career with Texas A&M in 1968 as an associate professor of agricultural education. After 36 years of teaching at TAMU, he retired in 2004 and took on the role of professor emeritus in the department. Until recently, he was in his office and at… Read More →

Critically Thinking About Ways to Improve Critical Thinking

A recent study conducted by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU) revealed that 81 percent of employers believe that critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills are quite important when selecting college graduates as new employees. Unfortunately, a vast majority of universities fall flat when it comes to teaching this learning outcome to students. At the moment, very few methods have been developed to teach critical thinking skills and the ones in place only scratch the surface. Dr. Barry Boyd, associate professor in the Department of Agricultural… Read More →

Texas A&M ALEC department has 11 NACTA attendees take home awards

The Texas A&M Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications (ALEC) recently returned from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) conference held in Ames, Iowa on June 12-15. The NACTA professional society focuses on the scholarship of teaching and learning agriculture and related disciplines at the postsecondary level. The ALEC department was well represented with 11 attendees taking home awards in the categories of graduate student teaching, educator awards, teaching scholar awards and journal awards. Graduate Student Teaching Lori Costello, Ph.D. student David Walther, Ph.D…. Read More →

Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications department hires new Agricultural Science faculty member

Dr. OP McCubbins is bringing some new insight to the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications (ALEC). McCubbins comes to us from Tennessee Technological University’s faculty and was previously an agricultural science teacher in Northern Kentucky. “I’ve only been with Texas A&M for a short while, but I love the atmosphere of the campus,” said McCubbins. “Everyone is eager to help and it makes it feel like home!” Along with his experiences from Kentucky and Tennessee, McCubbins secured his doctoral degree from Iowa State in the spring… Read More →

ALEC Department Travels Abroad for AIAEE Conference in Mexico

The Texas A&M Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications (ALEC) recently attended the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Education (AIAEE) conference in Merida, Mexico, April 16-20. The department was well represented, with five attendees bringing home awards and recognition. Assistant Professor Tobin Redwine, Ph.D., received the Outstanding Early Achievement award. Associate Professor Robert Strong, Ph.D., was awarded the Outstanding Service award, the highest honor bestowed by the AIAEE and Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Operations Kim Dooley, Ph.D., was recognized as the current and outgoing… Read More →

Texas A&M’s radio broadcasting program places 90 percent of graduates with industry jobs

Students interested in landing a job in radio broadcasting immediately after college should look no further than right here in Aggieland. Since 2010, the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications’ radio broadcasting program has been steadily building, and in the last four years, approximately 90 percent of students who are actively seeking jobs in the radio and records industry find them prior to graduating – at some of the hottest companies from the East Coast to the West Coast. Billy McKim, associate professor of agricultural communications and… Read More →

Aggie veteran completes 40-year journey to earning degree

For University Studies – Leadership major and veteran Bobby Deiss ’80, his graduation from Texas A&M University this week is a story 40 years in the making. Deiss, who first came to Texas A&M in 1976, left after the summer semester after failing to maintain his grades. He was told to take 15 hours from a community college before reapplying to Texas A&M, which he never did. However, the following year, he was invited to join the Corps and came back to campus for Fish Orientation Week, thinking… Read More →

Developing a new generation of international aid workers

A collaborative project through the United States Department of Agriculture’s Higher Education Challenge Grant Program aims to increase the effectiveness of future international agricultural development workers through on-the-ground training and high impact experiences. Researchers from the Texas A&M Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications (ALEC); Sam Houston State University; and Auburn University have partnered with Christianville Foundation, Inc. in Haiti to provide graduate students the opportunity to immerse themselves into the daily struggles of Haitians. During their week overseas, students work alongside Haitians in Christianville to identify… Read More →