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Published on 09/17/21

UGA to host Faculty Exchange Program in African Veterinary Science

By Laurie McLennan for CAES News
College of Veterinary Medicine faculty member Corrie Brown will administer a new U.S Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Service grant that will allow UGA to host and train visiting veterinary and agricultural educators from Africa. (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker)
College of Veterinary Medicine faculty member Corrie Brown will administer a new U.S Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Service grant that will allow UGA to host and train visiting veterinary and agricultural educators from Africa. (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker)

UGA was one of two U.S. institutions selected as hosts for the 2022-23 Faculty Exchange Program in African Veterinary Science. UGA’s interdisciplinary host team comprises the College of Veterinary Medicine, the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) and the Office of Global Engagement.

The program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service, is designed to help developing countries in Africa improve their university agricultural education, research and extension programs by providing one semester of training at U.S. land-grant agricultural universities.

“This award continues UGA’s success in fielding interdisciplinary teams to learn from international colleagues and build capacity across Africa in critical development areas,” said Brian Watkins, director of international initiatives at the Office of Global Engagement.

During the exchange, African faculty will be paired with some of UGA’s top researchers in agriculture and veterinary medicine for one-on-one mentoring, instructional coaching and curriculum development. In addition, the faculty exchange will expose visiting faculty to carefully selected site visits that will enhance their understanding of international trade and regulatory systems, animal health, clinical medicine, disease surveillance and post-harvest food safety.

“CAES recognizes and values the impact that stems from short-term training programs such as the Faculty Exchange Program in African Veterinary Science,” said CAES Dean and Director Nick Place. “Over the years, our faculty members have developed long-lasting and fruitful research collaborations with scientists who initially visited UGA for short-term training. These collaborations have grown into partnerships that benefit students and faculty at both institutions.”

After returning to their home countries, the FAS Faculty Exchange participants will continue to build on the skills learned from the program with continued support from their U.S. mentors. In addition, each UGA mentor will participate in a follow-up visit to their mentee’s home country to observe faculty innovations and provide follow-on support and advice to further solidify the revisions and modifications of the faculty’s teaching and research activities.

“We have always had a strong focus on global animal health and production and how to prepare the next generation of veterinarians for work in this arena,” said Corrie Brown, principal investigator and Josiah Meigs and University Professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine. “This program will allow our students and faculty even more opportunities to learn from their international colleagues and vice versa — it is a win-win situation.”

The FAS Faculty Exchange program is expected to commence spring 2022.

Laurie McLennan is the grants and projects coordinator for UGA's Office of Global Engagement.