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T HE AMBASSADOR College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Alumni Association

March 2019

Alumni Focus:

Byron J. Schneider '06 pg. 14

College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Alumni Association

03 Dean's Corner Dietetics & Human Nutrition 06 Department Feature

10 It Starts With Us

Philanthropy & Alumni Staff Pamela Gray

Senior Director of Philanthropy


Elizabeth Vaughn


Danielle Jostes


David Kessler

Associate Senior Director of Philanthropy

Director of Equine Philanthropy

Director of Extension Philanthropy 859-323-7912

Jonathan Furnish Associate Director of Alumni Engagement and Communications 859-257-7211

Tressa Neal April Bridenbecker

Associate Director of Leadership Annual Giving 859-257-2146

Services Manager & Executive Assistant


Sara Gardner

Business Officer

Brooke Stone

Administrative Assistant



Alumni Board of Directors Executive Board Sue Whitaker '64 - President Quentin Tyler '02, '05 - Vice President Jill Conway '00 - Secretary Bill McCloskey '84 '87 - Treasurer Stephanie Chamberlain '99, '01 - Affiliate Network Representative Charles Canter '89 - Past President Michelle McDonald '84 '93 - UK Alumni Association Liaison Affiliate Network Representatives Ben Conner '16 - Bluegrass Area Brian Osterman '00 - Fort Harrod Area Darla Kirkland '00 - Green River Area Chelsey Anderson '11 - Lake Cumberland Area Stephanie Chamberlain '99 '01 - Licking River Area Jeremy Hinton '98 - Lincoln Trail Area Rick Ryan '98 - Lincoln Trail Area - Louisville Area Grant Hildabrand '07 - Mammoth Cave Area Danny Bailey '68 '71 - Northeast Area Whitney Stith '90 - Northern Kentucky Area Kellie Padgett '14 - Pennyrile Area

- Purchase Area Camille Rice '98 '00 - Quicksand Area - Wilderness Trail Area Hannah Niebielski '13 - Equine Antomia Farrell '12 - MANRRS Tiffany Harper '17 - MANRRS Janet Mullins '82- Dietetics & Human Nutrition Jessica Coffie '06 '10 - Dietetics & Human Nutrition Cristina Hiten '06 '10 - Dietetics & Human Nutrition - Forestry & Natural Resources Student Directors Fabian Leon - Agricultural Biotechnology Major Amelia Iliohan - Individualized Studies in Agriculture Faculty Directors Will Snell '83 '85 '89 - Teaching Representative Robert Houtz - Research Representative Gary Palmer - Extension Representative

Committee Members Diana Doggett '75, '77 Bart Giles '03 Brandon Gilles '12 James Gilles '10 Kim Henken '92 '95 Kate Hildabrand '15 Tony Holloway '91 Brooke Jenkins-Howard '00 '05 Kyle Kelly '14 Liz Kingsland '87 '97 Michaela Mineer '18 Martha Nall '70 Bill Smith '70 Daniel Smith '01 Megan Tennison '13 '17 Melissa Tomblin '02 Administrative Personnel Nancy Cox - Dean Larry Grabau - Associate Dean for Instruction Wayne Centers '08 - Director of Student Relations Amanda Saha '02 - Dir. of Career Development & Enrichment

A look at the past Home Economics students preparing meals in the kitchen of the Student Union Building. Taken in the late 1950s. For more photos, visit the college Flickr page at flickr. com/photos/ukagriculture 2 | March 2019

Dean's Corner A

s we progress through the spring semester, 2019 is proving to be an exciting year for our college. In the coming months we will see the Grain and Forage Center of Excellence be completed in Princeton, thanks to our many friends and benefactors. We are also planning extensive renovations to many of our aging buildings on our corner of campus, pending approval by the Board of Trustees. This year will see a transition in some valued college leaders. Gary Palmer will step down from his leadership as Director of Extension. Gary has led Extension through a time of transition, while still providing an excellent customer interface. A search is under way for an associate dean and director of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service and we anticipate having an announcement on that later this spring. The Extension director is crucial to the college's overall mission by providing leadership to an organization dedicated to taking research-based educational programs and information, designed to improve quality of life and economic well-being, to the citizens of Kentucky. Larry Grabau, associate dean for instruction, will be stepping down in late summer. Larry is revered for leading the college's commitment to our students and their success. He has transformed his office, now known as the Center for Student Success, by broadening the advising, career development and overall student experience within our college. Additionally, he has been a mentor to many students, faculty and staff during his tenure. Dr. Grabau will be stepping away from his administrative role to be a full-time member of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences effective Aug. 1. We wish him well in this next phase of his academic pursuits. We are in the process of naming an interim to work alongside Dr. Grabau prior to his leaving the post. We are also excited to be adding to our degree and certificate programs. Some of these are new programs while others are already available in the classroom setting and will be expanded to online offerings. Two new proposed online master's degree programs within the college are the Science Translation and Outreach Program and Entomology. These two programs will join the existing online master's degree in Retailing and Tourism Management that has been offered since fall 2017. Two new proposed graduate certificates, Positive Youth Development and Family and Consumer Science, are being developed. College faculty are also partnering with the Colleges of Medicine and Health Sciences in a new Nutrition Certificate for Health Professionals. Additionally, the faculty of our existing Distillation, Wine and Brewing Studies undergraduate certificate and Food Systems and Hunger Studies undergraduate certificate plan to offer online options. The plan is to begin offering these programs by next fall. There are many approvals yet to be attained, but I appreciate the quick work and diligent efforts by our faculty to develop options and to guide them through the approval process. It is exciting to be able to offer new programs and more learning opportunities for those who may not be able to attend classes on campus. As always thank you for your continued support of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. These are exciting times for our college and I look forward to sharing more exciting news with you in the future. -Nancy Cox Dean, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

The Year Ahead March 14

April 13

SEC Tournament Happy Hour Ole Red - Nashville, TN

CAFE Alumni Association Board Meeting

Lexington, KY


One Day for UK - Day of Giving

The University of Kentucky


Equine Affiliate Network Land Rover Three-Day Event Tailgate The Kentucky Horse Park - Lexington, KY


The Livery - Lexington, KY

Call to the Post Derby Bash

May 2 The Graduate Farewell UK Gatton Student Center - Lexington , KY June - August Summer Affiliate Network Meetings Across the Commonwealth of Kentucky September 14 Roundup - Kentucky vs. Florida E.S. Good Barn - Lexington, KY 27-28

SEC Football Road Game

Columbia, South Carolina

October 5 CAFE Alumni Association Board Meeting Lexington, KY

Spring 2019

4 | March 2019

Call to the Post Derby Bash 2019


238 East Main Street, Lexington, KY 40507

Happy Hour - 6 p.m.

Join us for hors d'ouevres and local spirits tastings.

Dinner & Drinks - 7 p.m.

Enjoy a delicious meal prepared by Bayou Bluegrass Catering and complimentary drinks.

Live Music - 8 p.m.

Superfecta will have you dancing throughout the night!

Tastings - Silent Auction - Bourbon Pull Dress in your Derby Best!

*Dress - Derby Clubhouse A prize will be awarded to the best ladies derby hat and gentlemens attire.

All proceeds support College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Scholarships

To register, visit our website at

College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Alumni Association

Creating Healthy Dietetics & Human Nutrition Communities through Teaching, Research, and Outreach By Renee Fox

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (Academy) celebrates March as “National Nutrition Month®.” This annual campaign is a time to draw attention to the work folks in the fields of nutrition and dietetics strive to accomplish every day in promoting health and wellness. We do not have to look far to see this dedication and pursuit of excellence and helping others at the University of Kentucky. The Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition (DHN) offers outstanding undergraduate and graduate education opportunities for students passionate about health, wellness, and medicine. Faculty and staff within the department take pride in their work to fulfill the land-grant missions of teaching, research and outreach.


The Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition offers two undergraduate programs, two undergraduate certificates and a master’s degree. A multidisciplinary graduate certificate in Applied Nutrition and Culinary Medicine will be launched in Fall 2019. Students with a passion for understanding the role of diet and other lifestyle factors in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease and optimizing health gain the skills and experience necessary to excel in a variety of careers in healthcare facilities and the community. A Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition provides students with a foundational knowledge of how diet and physical activity play a role in improving and preventing disease, thus preparing students for further study in nutritional sciences and healthrelated fields. Most graduates go on to study medicine, dentistry, physician assistant studies, osteopathic medicine, optometry, pharmacy and physical therapy. For students interested in becoming Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RD/RDN), the department offers a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics, which is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics. Students can complete both their undergraduate degree and internship at UK through the Coordinated Program or complete their B.S. in Dietetics and then secure an internship at any accredited location throughout the U.S., including through a post-graduate internship in DHN. Graduates are eligible to sit for the national registration exam, administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration, to earn the credential (RD/RDN). DHN was selected by the Academy as one of the first dietetics programs across the nation to implement a new Sustainable Food Systems Curriculum that prepares new practitioners with strong foundational knowledge in the nutritional, social, environmental, and economic drivers of sustainable and resilient food systems. Undergraduate students from any major are invited to pursue the Undergraduate Certificate in Food Systems and Hunger Studies (FSHS) and/or the Undergraduate Certificate in Nutrition for Human Performance (NHP). Through coursework and experiential learning, the FSHS certificate explores the impact of food systems on food security, hunger and the overall health and wellness of a community. Those interested in sports nutrition may pursue the NHP certificate, gaining specialized knowledge in the role of nutrition to support physical activity and athletic performance at all levels, from those just starting an exercise program, to elite athletes, and those recovering from injury. Students complete relevant coursework in sports nutrition and exercise physiology and gain experience volunteering and/or shadowing sports nutrition professionals, including the UK Athletics Performance Nutrition Team. At the graduate level, DHN offers a Master of Science in Nutrition and Food Systems, where students gain an understanding of how food systems impact diet and human health, while learning to apply evidencebased strategies to reduce the risk of chronic disease among individuals and communities. In collaboration with faculty in the department, students complete a thesis project. Along with traditional in-class learning, the department values out-of-class learning opportunities by studying abroad and offers faculty-led study tours to Italy, West Africa, and Australia. 6 | March 2019


Faculty in DHN are dedicated to finding innovative solutions to health issues impacting the state, nation, and world. Their research generates new discoveries and they develop evidence-based, wellness solutions for Kentuckians and beyond. Through a fouryear research project funded by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, faculty in DHN have collaborated with UK’s College of Public Health to reduce obesity rates in six Kentucky counties by creating visible policy, systems and environmental change. Through this initiative, residents have improved healthy eating habits and increased physical activity with changes such as expanded access to farmers’ markets, healthy recipe promotions at grocery stores, renovation of playgrounds at community parks and the development of safe and walkable communities. Additionally, faculty research focuses on increasing the quantity and variety of fruit and vegetable consumption among vulnerable populations. Through community partnerships and programs, healthy lifestyle changes occur by intervening at the individual and organizational levels. The BerryCare program is an example of research that leads to positive community impact through academic and community collaboration. By leveraging activities through local Cooperative Extension, this program leads to sustainable, affordable and accessible sources of phytonutrient-rich blackberries for vulnerable populations, while increasing physical activity through gardening. On campus, faculty also offer services and resources to help community members improve their health, including body composition and metabolic testing in a Nutrition Assessment Laboratory. State-of-the-art teaching kitchens are available for healthy cooking demonstrations that encourage hands-on learning to create delicious and healthy recipes!


Community outreach is at the core of the department, with a long history of collaboration with UK’s Family and Consumer Sciences Cooperative Extension. The department develops award-winning programs and produces evidence-based publications for Cooperative Extension to help Kentuckians live their best lives. Students also get involved in community programs, such as Plate it Up Kentucky Proud, where students apply knowledge from the classroom to make healthful modifications to develop recipes with locally-grown ingredients. Faculty and staff guide and encourage students to gain real-world experience and make a difference in their community through experiential learning activities. An opportunity to work at the Lemon Tree through the Quantity Food Production class gives students hands-on experience with the ends and outs of responsibilities involved in operating a restaurant. Outside of the classroom, many choose to get involved in student-led organizations, including the Campus Kitchen at the University of Kentucky, that engages 900 students from across campus who recover food from farms, farmers’ markets, and dining services and repurposes it into healthful meals for those experiencing hunger (and recognized as the Campus Kitchen of the Year in 2016!); the Student Dietetic and Nutrition Association, offering development and encouragement for students interested in the study of nutrition and dietetics; and SSTOP Hunger: Sustainable Solutions to Overcome Poverty, the Universities Fighting World Hunger chapter at UK that supports on-campus initiatives and organizations with a focus on solving hunger and malnutrition. The department supports the Farm-to-Fork: Free Locally Sourced Lunches for Wildcats that provides well-balanced weekly lunches to UK students who are experiencing food insecurity. You can find faculty, staff and students in the Department of DHN living out their passion for teaching and learning, research and the discovery of healthy solutions, and strengthening the community through service each and every day.

To learn more about UK's Department of Dietetics and Human Nutrition, visit or find us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Join us for

University of Kentucky Equine Alumni Tailgate Kentucky Three-Day Event Kentucky Horse Park Tailgate spots A18 & A19

Saturday, April 27, 2019 Starts at 10 a.m.







Proudly supporting the next crop of Kentucky farmers. Farming in Kentucky has seen dramatic changes over the past century. New technologies. New practices. New ways of bringing products to market. In the midst of these changes, the future of Kentucky agriculture demands that tomorrow’s farmers be educated in the field and in the classroom. Kentucky Farm Bureau proudly supports giving young farmers the tools, skills and knowledge they need for success. Why Farm Bureau? Because education ensures a brighter future for all Kentuckians.

It starts with us UK alumna creates dream spaces across the country

Everyone hopes for success after they graduate from college, but for University of Kentucky alumna Liz Toombs '06, this success became a reality. A Louisville, Kentucky, native, Toombs came to UK for an undergraduate degree in merchandising, apparel and textiles from the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. After graduating, she began working for a local countertop manufacturer selling countertops to homeowners, builders and designers. Toombs soon joined Decor & You, a franchise who helped customers with their interior needs. During this time, she became a certified interior decorator. In April of 2009 she started her own company called Polkadots & Rosebuds Interiors which she rebranded in 2017 to PDR Interiors. "I feel so fortunate to do creative work that I love every day. Our clients mean the world to me!" Toombs' company soared when a fraternity at UK reached out to her for help with their house, and from there her company has thrived on word of mouth and referrals. PDR has reached 25 states extending from California to Florida, and has also done work in Canada. This includes model rooms for four UK residence halls. They offer services in interior decorating for homes, businesses and the Greek community. "I enjoyed and am very grateful for my time at UK. There are so many small things that affected me there. I met my husband there, but the Greek experience has shaped me the most. I've come full circle from Greek life in undergrad to my professional work. Everyday UK is in my life."

UK Forestry and Natural Resources Extension receives national award

The UK Forestry and Natural Resources Cooperative Extension team recently won the Comprehensive Family Forests Education Award presented by the National Woodland Owners Association and the National Association of University Forest Resources Programs. This is the second time the team has won this national award, which is presented to an educational institution that has delivered the most effective education program benefiting family forest owners over the past five years. A family forest education program is a combination of educational materials, media, courses, workshops, events and/or electronic media, including applied research that supports those efforts. The award recognizes effective programs that address any or all aspects of forest resources management including silviculture, forest health, harvesting, forest and estate planning, business management and marketing. Jeff Stringer, chair of the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, accepted the award on the team's behalf. "Forests comprise 50 percent of Kentucky, and 78 percent of the 12 million acres of forest is family owned. It is vital that these family forest owners are provided with the information and education to help them make wise decisions to enhance the forest for their benefit and ultimately for the benefit of all Kentuckians," he said. "I am proud of the tireless work conducted by extension professionals in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources. This national award highlights the quality and effectiveness of their program." Information about the programs and resources offered to Kentucky woodland owners can be found online at 10 | March 2019

Students cook "Farm-to-Fork" for fellow Wildcats

Once a week during the semester, students line up in the hallways of Funkhouser anxiously awaiting lunch, which is cooked by fellow students as part of the Farm-to-Fork program. "Farm-to-Fork is a grant-funded meal program that provides not only free locally sourced lunches using recovered foods and produce, but also education and a sense of community to any UK student," said Kendra Oo, a UK graduate student studying nutrition and food systems in UK's College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. "To offer a multidimensional, interdisciplinary approach to college food insecurity, Farm-to-fork integrates social, sustainable, local and educational elements through healthy lunchtime meals served to approximately 100 students weekly." This effort is led by UK's Campus Kitchen. The goal is to bring awareness to issues surrounding hunger, albeit in a different way. The focus of the kitchen is on helping people on and off campus in the greater Lexington community while also trying to keep food from going to waste.

Siemer Milling gives $1 million to UK Grain and Forage Center

Siemer Milling Company is making a gift of $1 million to the University of Kentucky Grain and Forage Center of Excellence to support initiatives to improve grain quality and agronomic productivity of wheat in Kentucky and the region. The gift will be given in five annual installments of $200,000 to support the Siemer Milling Company Wheat Production Program Fund. The fund will be used for programming, equipment, outreach, and faculty and student support. The conference center at the soon-to-be completed Grain and Forage Center will be named the Siemer Milling Company Conference Center. "Because of the knowledge base, geography and weather patterns in Kentucky, growers can get three good crops in two years. These growers are interested in growing quality wheat and essential to that is optimizing production techniques," said Rick Siemer, president. "When university officials showed me their plans and vision for the Grain and Forage Center and I shared it with our board of directors, they said it sounded like a great idea. We are excited about deepening our relationship and support of wheat cultivations and growing techniques in Kentucky." UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Dean Nancy Cox said, "The agriculture industry in Kentucky has been supportive of our college's research and outreach efforts for many years. This wonderful gift from Siemer Milling continues this legacy. We are very fortunate to have a company in our state that provides a market for our farmers and understands the value of ongoing research and educational efforts."

11 | It Starts With Us

UK veterinarian receives national excellence award

At the recent annual convention of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians, University of Kentucky's Dr. Erdal Erol received the 2018 BIOMIC Excellence in Diagnostic Veterinary Microbiology Award. This national award recognizes distinguished scientists for research accomplishments in the field that can be applied for the betterment of veterinary medicine. Dr. Erol has led the diagnostic microbiology unit of the UK Veterinary Diagnostic Lab since 2010. He has served as principal investigator or co-investigator on several research projects that have added to the understanding and knowledge base of bacterial infectious diseases in animals, some of which have been devastating to the livestock and horse industries. His seminal work to better understand the etiology of nocardioform placentitis in the horse has helped to better characterize the epidemiology and pathogenesis of this mysterious agent that results in late-term fetal loss, leading to ideas for better management and preventive modalities. "I believe Dr. Erol ranks as one of the top veterinary microbiologists in the United States conducting and participating in research to advance diagnostic methods," said Craig Carter, UK VDL director. "His contributions are lauded by scientists around the world, and his work truly has advanced the field of bacteriology in veterinary medicine." The UK VDL is part of the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. It diagnoses animal diseases and performs tests which safeguard the health of Kentucky's animal population. The lab helps identify infectious diseases, identify regulatory diseases, provides the means to meet export sales requirements and provides an early warning system for impending epidemics.

UK's Reed receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Michael Reed, University of Kentucky agricultural economics professor, was recently honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southern Agricultural Economics Association. The association gives the award to individuals to recognize their accomplishments in the profession and to the association. "Reed's research contributions to the profession of agricultural economics are extensive and significant," said Barry Barnett, professor and chair of the UK Department of Agricultural Economics. "While he has conducted research on a variety of topics including crop insurance, land use and agricultural production efficiency, he is perhaps best known for his work on agricultural trade, consumer food demand and international development." Reed has been a faculty member in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment for more than 40 years and has served as the director of the university's office of International Programs for Agriculture for more than 20 years. He received two Fulbright awards to Indonesia in 2016 and Zimbabwe in 2014. Reed holds honorary doctorates from Maejo University in Thailand and Bucharest University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine in Romania. He is an honorary fellow of the University of Craiova in Romania. Reed has received more than $4.5 million in external funding to support his research and international programs. He is the author of 93 journal articles, more than 30 book chapters or published proceedings and a highly regarded textbook, International Trade in Agricultural Products. He has given nearly 50 invited presentations in more than a dozen countries. During his career, Reed has directed 37 doctoral students and 24 master's degree students. He served on the advisory committees of more than 100 additional graduate students and hosted 29 visiting scholars. Within the association, Reed is very active and served as its president-elect, president and past president in 2009 and 2012. He is currently serving in his third year as the editor of the Journal of Agriculture and Applied Economics, the association's academic journal.

For more stories, visit 12 | March 2019


Alumni Focus Byron J. Schneider B.S. Human Nutrition '06 By Aimee Nielson


yron Schneider didn’t take a traditional path to medical school, but he’s certain the path he took prepared him well and in some instances, helped him be a more practical physician and researcher. Joining the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment after a year at the University of Alberta, Dr. Schneider chose human nutrition in the College’s School of Human Environmental Sciences as his pre-med path. “There’s actually not much nutrition education in medical school,” he said. “I think it needs to be more robust and certainly, from a medical perspective, nutrition really has a lot to do with metabolism and what happens in your body.” While a student in CAFE, Dr. Schneider benefited from the smaller, family-like atmosphere. “I remember walking in to my first class and seeing the professor chatting with students,” he recalled. “It was just very different from the atmosphere I was used to where professors seemed very unhappy to even be in the same room with us. She was very friendly and really cared about the students.” He graduated with his bachelor’s degree in 2006 and then completed his studies at the UK College of Medicine in 2011. Dr. Schneider completed his residency at Stanford University, and then in 2016, made his way back east to become an assistant professor at Vanderbilt University. Currently, he works in physical medicine and rehabilitation, treating patients with spinal problems. He said his bachelor’s work in human nutrition plays a role in his unique department. “There has been increased attention toward the role nutrition plays in spinal problems,” he said. “Patients’ nutritional needs, especially when they are ill, are a pretty integral piece of the puzzle when you’re trying to manage their conditions.” Although it was not too long ago that Dr. Schneider was

an undergraduate, he says he has seen a big shift in the way students obtain and use information and technology. “I didn’t totally grow up with technology, and our education was still largely based on memorization of facts,” he said. “Now that information is instantly available at the touch of a screen, there’s less focus on memorizing and more of a focus on how to attain new information and how to use it.” For students on a similar path to medical school and beyond, Dr. Schneider said he believes students need to focus on ways they can rise above the competition by using all the resources available to them.

“There’s still so much value in being wellrounded,” he said. “Being personable is a very valuable skill because if you have three or four people that all the look the same on paper, the person everyone likes is going to get the opportunity.” Beyond likeability and good grades, Dr. Schneider said students need to find something they are really passionate about and pour themselves into it. “It could be something as simple as taking a real interest in the nutritional needs of the people in Eastern continued on pg. 16

15 | It Starts With Us

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Kentucky and following up that interest with some kind of ongoing project, not just something you do once a year,” he said. “Lots of people can sign up for a one-time volunteer slot; fewer people organize those opportunities and recruit others to join them.” Above everything, Dr. Schneider said networking and finding people who will advocate for you is a real key to success. “I don’t really talk to my professors much anymore, but I know some of them still remember my name and I remember they took an interest in me as a student,” he said. “Having strong personal and professional relationships with people invested in you and your success is important. And, that’s a two-way street; reciprocate that support.”

Dr. Schneider's Educational Path: Undergraduate: Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition, Summa cum Laude, University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment - '06 MD: Doctor of Medicine, With High Distinction, University of Kentucky, College of Medicine - '11

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Residency: Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Standford University - '15 Fellowship: Interventional Spine Fellow, Stanford University - '16 Research: Dr. Schneider's research initially focused on complications and safety related issues of interventional spine procedures. Recently his research has shifted focus towards outcomes and predictors of outcomes in interventional spine procedures.

Student Spotlight Maddie Romines

Human Nutrition, Pre-Medicine track Graduation Year: 2020 Hometown: Forest Lake, MN Activities: Student Leader at the Christian Student Fellowship, Undergraduate Research Assistant in the BioMotion Lab, Organic Chemistry Lab Assistant, Coach at CrossFit Maximus Q: What led you to choose the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment? A: Initially, I was drawn to the major of Human Nutrition. As a former athlete and “health nut” as my parents and coaches called me, nutrition was always an interest. Coming into college, I was on the fence about physical therapy, physician’s assistant, or medical school, so human nutrition was the perfect pre-professional route that intertwined with a passion of mine. On top of that, being a part of the college is practically a family tradition. Both my mom and dad, two uncles and my grandpa graduated from UK with degrees from the college, so my decision was made with ease. Q: What does the College mean to you/describe your best/overall experience? A: The College of Agriculture, Food and Environment has really been a family. I know everyone says that, but the amount of connections I’ve made in the college as an out-ofstate student is incredible. On top of that, I’ve been lucky enough to share the same classes, and sometimes the same exact schedule with peers along the way. This really helps build bonds and friendships among students, faculty and staff. That experience is so unique to CAFE; friends in different majors don’t quite understand how close knit it is.

Q: How is the College preparing you for your future? A: The networking I’ve done through the college has set me up for so much success. I’ve made lifelong friends and mentors while completing interesting and rigorous course work that will lead me into medical school. I can’t speak highly enough of the Dietetics and Human Nutrition Department and the care they have for students. I’ve been mentored and guided in the perfect direction to be successful, but also challenged to push the boundaries of my knowledge. The greatest way I’m being prepared for the future is through the nutritional background I’m gaining while heading into a medical career. The impact of proper nutrition on health is clear, and with the outlook of our country’s physical well being, nutritional interventions are critical. I believe having that education will be exponentially beneficial as a future healthcare provider. Q: Where do you see yourself in 15 years? A: After many long years of education and residency, I hope to be practicing medicine as a sports medicine physician or traveling as a team doctor for a professional or collegiate team. Granted, that could all change in medical school, but for now, I’m passionate about

orthopedics and serving an active population. Q: Why would you recommend the College to future students? A: There are so many reasons I would recommend the CAFE to future UK students. We have so many diverse opportunities to pursue within the college from agricultural biotechnology and agricultural economics, to equine science and beyond. The future is bright and prosperous for our students. Additionally, with the family-like environment, comes the generosity of scholarships. I’ve been so blessed to graciously receive numerous scholarships through the college and cannot thank the donors and alumni for their continual support. Lastly, the loyalty and affiliation I have with the College of Agriculture Food and Environment makes it worthwhile. Come join the legacy!

To learn more about the Human Nutrition Program, visit their website at: 17 | It Starts With Us

Philanthropy One day. One gift. One enormous impact. On April 17, the University of Kentucky will rally its alumni, friends and fans to support One Day for UK, a 24-hour day of giving where donors can support the college, unit or cause of their choice. 'One Day for UK provides alumni and friends an opportunity to assist the college in securing funds to help even more of our deserving students fulfill their dreams,' said Pamela Gray, senior director of philanthropy and alumni at the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. In its first year, the goal of One Day for UK is to raise awareness about the campaign and to generate support for UK. “This is a chance for people to show their UK pride,” said Sarah Fitzgerald, associate director of annual giving and One Day for UK organizer. “Many people are unaware of the many areas they can support at UK. This is a chance for us to spend one day celebrating UK, teaching people about the different ways they can support the university and showing them how they can help us continue to grow.” By conducting the campaign online, UK hopes to reach a broader audience, including reconnecting with alumni, engaging young alumni and motivating its strongest supporters to make a gift. In addition to financially supporting the college, unit or cause of their choice, supporters can repost messages, spark conversation about UK online and encourage their friends and family to give. To further promote the day, The College of Agriculture, Food and Environment is seeking ambassadors – students, alumni, friends and donors – to help publicize One Day for UK through their personal social media. Each ambassador will get a toolkit with language and strategies to help them spread the message. To become a College of Agriculture, Food and Environment ambassador, visit or contact Tressa Neal in the CAFE Office of Philanthropy and Alumni at “It is a community effort,” Fitzgerald said. “Together, we can make a huge impact on campus through One Day for UK. We can provide more scholarships and research opportunities for students, give our colleges and departments the resources they need to be successful and strengthen our creative and outreach efforts, which help transform the Commonwealth.” One Day for UK also supports the university’s comprehensive campaign, Kentucky Can: The 21st Century Campaign, which increases opportunities for student success, funds innovative research, improves health care, strengthens the alumni network and supports athletic programs. UK will be mailing information about One Day for UK to all alumni. People can make a gift through the mail or at before April 17 to the college, unit or cause of their choice. Once they complete the gift information on Network for Good, donors can check a box to have their gift applied to the overall One Day for UK total. On April 17, all supporters should visit to make a gift, to track the campaign’s progress and to read stories about how the campaign benefits UK. All of the college, department and unit funds will be listed on that page. To join the online conversation, people should follow #OneDayforUK on all social media platforms throughout March and April to learn more about the campaign and to discuss how donor support and UK shaped their lives.

18 | March 2019

College of Agriculture, Food and Environment Office of Philanthropy and Alumni

E.S. Good Barn - 1451 University Drive - Lexington, KY 40546-0097

Presorted Standard US Postage Paid Permit 51 Lexington KY


Call to the Post Derby Bash 2019

SATURDAY, APRIL 27 The Livery Tastings - Silent Auction - Bourbon Pull The College of Agriculture, Food and Environment is an Equal Opportunity Organization.