Jennie Popp Named Interim Honors College Associate Dean
Jennie Popp, professor of agricultural economics and agricultural business and co-director of the University of Arkansas Service Learning Initiative, has been named interim associate dean of the Honors College, effective July 1, 2016. Carol Gattis, who has served as Honors College associate dean since 2009, will retire on June 30 but will continue to consult with Honors College staff on international education and diversity recruitment.
In her new role Popp will oversee Honors College fellowship and grant programs, serve as the college's liaison with the six college-based honors programs, and direct new initiatives in international research and service learning.
"Jennie Popp has long been a champion of honors education here at the U of A, and she has helped lead the way in service learning here on campus," said Honors College Dean Lynda Coon. "We look forward to welcoming Jennie to our team and working with her to create some exciting new opportunities for honors students and faculty. We are also very grateful to Carol Gattis for her stellar work here at the Honors College, and grateful that we can continue to rely on her sound advice and insights on a consulting basis."
Popp has served as a member of the Bumpers College Honors Committee for nearly 10 years. She has directed many honors student theses on topics ranging from assessing women's roles in Arkansas agriculture to composting food waste from campus residence halls. Many of her students have won awards for their honors research on campus and at the regional and national level. Popp has served on honors committees within Bumpers College and Fulbright College and currently serves as "first mentor" to all incoming honors students majoring in agribusiness.
She helped to launch service learning on campus by developing the agricultural component of the community development program based in Dangriga, Belize. Led by co-directors Popp and Angela Oxford, the UA Service Learning Initiative has built support and expanded opportunities for faculty and students, with more than 150 service learning course sections currently offered on campus and abroad.
Peace Corps service in West Africa inspired Jennie Popp's interest in agricultural economics. Her research focuses on managing natural resources to improve soil and water quality and the development and implementation of agricultural and environmental policy. She has published two books and numerous book chapters, journal articles and reports. She has presented her work at professional meetings and conferences throughout the United States. She earned a B.S. degree in economics and finance at the University of Scranton, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in agricultural and resource economics at Colorado State University. She received an Honors College Distinguished Faculty Award in 2011.
Popp will continue in her role as co-director of the Service Learning Initiative. A celebration honoring Carol Gattis' years of service to the Honors College and the College of Engineering will be announced at a later date.
Kendall Curlee, director of communications
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