Dyment defends master’s thesis

Congratulations to Madison Dyment on the successful defense of her master’s thesis, “Attitudes Toward Agricultural Communications Program Development at the University of Guelph: A Student and Industry Perspective.”
Dr. Annie Specht, an associate professor of agricultural communication served as Dement’s advisor and Dr. Emily Buck, a professor of agricultural communication, served as a committee member.
Dyment will graduate in May with a master of science in agricultural communication, education, and leadership. She holds a bachelor of science in community and leadership development and a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of Kentucky.
Congratulations Maddie!
#ACELatOSU #CFAES #AgComm #OSUgradlove

FFA Alumni Spotlight: Colby Gregg, Geronimo FFA

Colby Gregg is a PhD student studying agricultural communication, education, and leadership at Ohio State, specializing in agricultural education.

Colby comes to Ohio State from Geronimo, Oklahoma, where he was a member of the Geronimo FFA.

Why did you decide to attend The Ohio State University?
Ohio State has excellent agricultural education faculty and I wanted a chance to learn about agricultural education and FFA in a new state!

How did your experiences in FFA help you choose your major?
It opened my eyes to how agricultural education is an area where every student can succeed, and I wanted to be a part of that.

How did FFA prepare you for your future career?
By showing me how impactful it can be for young people and communities alike.


Bauman defends MS project

Please join us in congratulating Joy Young Bauman on the successful defense of her master’s project, “Youth Cooperative Leadership Experience.”

Bauman is pictured with her advisor, Dr. Jerry Thomas, and committee member Dr. Keith Smith.

Congratulations Joy!

ACEL graduate students attend NAE4-HA

The 2019 NAE4-HA Conference with the theme “Mountains of Opportunity” was held at the Greenbriar Resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia.  Several ACEL students, faculty and alumni were in attendance.

Current ACEL PhD student Katie Feldhues presented a program showcase titled “Empowering your Emotional Intelligence” with ACEL alums Hannah Epley ’14 PhD and Crystal Ott ’17 MS. Current ACEL PhD student Christy Clary ’08 presented a poster titled “Communicating with Clientele – There’s an App for That!”. Clary was also recognized with the Excellence in Healthy Living Programming Award, along with ACEL alum Jessica Rockey ’02 MS.

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Current MS student Frances Nicol ’18 presented a program seminar with ACEL alum Leslie Cooksey ’05, ’12 MS, Doug Foxx and Aubry Fowler titled “Own Your Mountain – Take Your Best Hike to Training Camp Counselors”.

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Nicol, Foxx, Fowler and Cooksey

Current ACEL PhD student Margo Long presented a program showcase titled “Beyond the Standards of Success”.

Margo Long before she presented her presentation at NAE4-HA.


ACEL faculty member Scott Sheer gave a workshop presentation with Christy Millhouse, and ACEL alum Rhonda Williams ’03 MS titled “Guiding Volunteers to the Summit by Putting into Practice the New 4-H Cloverbud Volunteer Guidebook.”

Congratulations to all who presented and attended!

Lowe defends MS project

Please join us in congratulating Jessica Lowe on the successful defense of her master’s project, “Implementing Farm to School in Pickaway County Head Start Centers.”

Lowe is pictured with her advisor, Dr. Scott Scheer, and Dr. Caryn Filson who served as a member on her graduate committee.

Congratulations Jessica!

Faculty, graduate students honored at NACTA conference

In late June, several of our faculty members and graduate students attended the 2019 North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) conference held in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Faculty and graduate students presenting research include:

Oral Presentation: Using iPads to Enhance Education Abroad Learning, Kelly Newlon and Kelly George

Poster Presentation: Second-Year Engagement: A Theoretical Examination of First-Generation College of Agriculture Students, AaronGiorgi and Susie Whittington

Faculty and staff receiving awards include:

NACTA Teaching Scholar Award: Dr. Emily Buck
NACTA Educator Award: Dr. Caryn Filson and Dr. Annie Specht
NACTA Graduate Student Award: Aaron Giorgi, Fally Masambuka, and Lauren Stohlmann

Join us in congratulating these faculty and graduate students who do an outstanding job teaching our students!

Meet Our Graduate Students: Karen Argabright

Janer and Vicki

Karen in her element…with horses.

Karen Argabright, a graduate research associate, got her start in agriculture in Shelby County, Ohio where she grew up on a crop and livestock farm. Having earned her associate’s degree from Ohio State’s Agricultural Technical Institute (ATI) in horse production and management with a specialty in reproduction, Karen worked in the equine industry for the next nine years. She spent time in North Carolina, Texas, and Ohio as she managed herds of both Clydesdales and performance quarter horses.

In 2007, Karen moved back to Ohio where she finished her bachelor’s degree in animal science at Ohio State while managing a small farm in Pataskala, Ohio. Three years later in 2010, Karen began her master’s degree in agricultural extension education with a focus in organizational leadership. During her studies she worked on the topic of developing emotional intelligence, and examined Onboarding in OSU extension. Her thesis topic was assessing organizational values within The Ohio State University Extension system.

Upon completion of her master’s degree, Karen stayed at Ohio State as she began her PhD research for her doctoral program in 2012. As a part of her doctoral program, Karen has either worked on or is currently working on the following projects: continuing focus on Onboarding in Ohio State extension, collaborating on a multi-state study that assesses the organizational culture within Extension’s North Central Region, and collaborating with a steering committee for a Strategic Foresight project looking at the future of extension.

Karen says that throughout her academic career she has had a lot of really valuable hands-on experience by working directly with the people that her projects would impact the most. She says that, “I was brought to the realm of organizational development research to fulfill a passion for helping people and organizations discover and achieve their optimal potential.”

Karen’s personal hobbies include helping on the farm, repurposing, tending to her many house plants, cooking, traveling, and exploring new places.


To learn more about graduate opportunities within ACEL, contact Mary Kivel by emailing kivel.1@osu.edu.

Meet Our Graduate Students: Elizabeth Hustead


Elizabeth Hustead

After graduating with a master’s degree in agronomy from the University of Florida, Elizabeth Hustead came to Ohio State where she graduated this past May with her second master’s degree, this time in agricultural communication. Having spent the past two years in the Department of Agricultural Education, Communication, and Leadership (ACEL), Elizabeth is now out in the real world where she has begun her career in the position of social marketing coordinator in Ohio SNAP-Ed.

Elizabeth’s research at Ohio State was the flagship project of an innovative partnership between ACEL and the Center for Applied Plant Sciences (CAPS). She worked with CAPS’s scientific research teams to pilot a cutting-edge communications platform aimed at facilitating collaborative research within and across geographically dispersed teams.

In her current position as a social marketing coordinator, Elizabeth works with SNAP-Ed offices throughout the state to launch a social marketing campaign promoting fruit and vegetable consumption among SNAP recipients with children.

SNAP-Ed is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education under the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). It’s goal is to: “improve the likelihood that persons eligible for SNAP will make healthy choices within a limited budget and choose active lifestyles consistent with the current dietary guidelines for Americans and MyPlate.”

Elizabeth says that her ACEL degree and the connections she made during her time as a graduate research student were instrumental in discovering her passion for food security issues and securing her position in social marketing, which she loves.

To learn more about graduate opportunities within ACEL, contact Mary Kivel by emailing kivel.1@osu.edu


Meet Our Graduate Students: Cora Carter

Motivated, ambitious, goal-oriented, and driven to make a difference are a few of the ways to describe graduate student Cora Carter. From a small town in Southern Indiana, Cora majored in pre-veterinary medicine at Purdue University as a fourth generation Boilermaker. Once admitted into the prestigious College of Veterinary Medicine at Purdue, Cora had a decision to make. Continue on in the Vet Scholars program, or follow her calling to help feed the world?Photo

Through church mission trips, Cora had traveled to Honduras where she saw poverty in a real way. These trips are what helped to plant the seed of spending her life helping to feed others. Changing her concentration from pre-vet to animal production, Cora added a second major in international agronomy. This helped her build a knowledge base in crops, soils, forages, animal nutrition, and international economics. Knowing that in order to reach her goals she would need research experience and a higher-level degree, Cora found the perfect fit at Ohio State with the international development extension graduate degree. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in agricultural extension and education with a focus on international development from Ohio State’s Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership.

The research that Cora is conducting is focused on livestock production in the inner city of developing countries- something that hasn’t been researched to a great extent. She is developing a project in collaboration with the International Research Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in Managua, Nicaragua. The project will survey livestock producers within the city limits of Managua, determining their needs for safety education with regards to raising livestock. With hopes of determining the safety education levels of farmers, especially regarding waste management and zoonotic diseases, Cora will then work with animal scientists, veterinarians, and OSU extension personnel to develop workshops and materials for use in Nicaragua.

She wishes to create a self sustaining program in Nicaragua by training local Nicaraguan livestock producers to teach the workshops to their peers, which would in turn help guide further education programs. Excited about her future and where her research at Ohio State will take her, Cora says,
“I look forward to being a part of the solution to world hunger in my lifetime and this is where it begins.”



To learn more about graduate opportunities within ACEL, contact Dr. Scott Scheer by emailing scheer.9@osu.edu or visit room 203 in Agricultural Administration.