Monday, April 18, 2016

Student Success Leads to Faculty Success: Daniel Foster Receives College of Agricultural Sciences Awards

"I am an agricultural educator by choice an not by chance."  

The Ag Teacher's Creed is something Dr. Daniel Foster lives by.  Whether it is the first line or the last line he is dedicated to the creed and the mission of agricultural education.   His commitment comes second to his passion and he is truly an agricultural educator by choice and recent recipient of two awards in the College of Agricultural Sciences! 

"I dedicate my life to its development and the advancement of its people"

Between teaching, research and visiting student teachers in the field, Dr. Foster meets with nearly half of the students in the Agricultural & Extension Education major.  From academic advising questions, to questions about job interviews he always has advice to lend his students. Dr. Foster's experience and success does not go unrecognized and he is the winner of the 2016  Excellence in Academic Advising Award!  Every year the College of Agricultural Sciences Alumni Society awards one College of Agricultural Sciences faculty or staff who advises students an Excellence in Academic Advising Award.  Nominees are selected based on their success in academic advising, individual student goal-setting and career planning, and personal counseling.  His door always seems to be revolving with students going in and out asking him questions about Penn State classes to their future classrooms.  If they can't reach him in his office, he is only an email or tweet away.  His dedication to students and his constant choice to put agricultural education first is shown beyond his office walls.   He has encouraged and enabled students to step foot into high school classrooms, extension offices and across country boarders to teach abroad.  His commitment to  student relationships is matched with his dedication to research to advance agricultural education.

"I will endeavor to develop professionally through study, travel and exploration."

Dr. Foster and the team of students and faculty he took to
Korea to learn about global agricultural education. 

It is Dr. Foster's love for travel and exploration paired with student learning that put him on the path to receiving another award through the College of Agricultural Sciences.  The Roy C. Buck Faculty Award in Agricultural Sciences Award is awarded to a faculty member on a tenure-track in the College of Agricultural Sciences for the best refereed article in a scholarly journal.  Foster's article was published in the Agricultural Education Journal in 2014.  The article titled: "Preparing Agricultural Educators for the World: Describing Global Competency in Agricultural Teacher Candidates." His co-authors were Laura Sankey Rice and Melanie Miller- Foster both of Penn State and Kirby Barrick of the University of Florida.    His article showed his dedication to preparing students for global competence in agriculture.  His research looked at how classroom teaching and field experiences together lead to understanding and perceptions.  He measured global competency in students that were involved in a class prior to and after a travel experience. Future research recommended is to measure how teacher candidate perceptions could impact the practice in secondary school based agriculture classrooms. 

The first Global Teach Ag! Leadership Team led by Dr. Daniel &
Melanie Foster

 Foster continues his dedication to global competency in teacher candidates by offering opportunities for students to do international undergraduate research, encouraging studying abroad and applying for grants to take students on global travel experiences.  He is also one of the co-founders of the Global Teach Ag! Initiative that is dedicated to developing agriscience teachers for a global impact in food, fiber and natural resources through youth development and education.  

"My love for youth will spur me on to impart something from my life that will help make for each of my students a full and happy future." 

As he nears the end of his 6th year at Penn State, his love for youth and inspiring the secondary teachers that will teach the youth of tomorrow is evident.  Congratulations on your awards Dr. Foster, your commitment is an example to all of us! Connect with Dr. Foster on Twitter!  @FosterDanielD

To learn more about starting on the path to having a career that makes a positive impact on the lives of students across the globe by becoming an agricultural educator, please contact the agricultural teacher education program at Follow us on Twitter at TeachAgPSU, on Facebook, or on our blog.

Kayla Hack

Student Blogger

Twitter Handle: @hackkayla

2017 Agriculture Education Student Teacher

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