The Undergraduate Research Program

Find a faculty mentor

The following School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences faculty members are available to guide students through the two-year Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Prior to applying, you should first have a discussion with at least one of the mentors from this list whose research interests mesh with your own long-term goals and career interests.

Department of Agribusiness, Applied Economics and Agriscience Education

Dr. Antoine Alston
Professor and director of Agricultural Education Program

Dr. Antoine AlstonContact
Room 251 Carver Hall
Office:  (336) 334-7711
Fax: (336) 334-7257
Email: alstona@ncat.edu

Research interests:
The impact of instructional technology and distance learning in agricultural education; how secondary agricultural education teachers utilize the tools of instructional technology to help improve the learning outcomes of agriculture students; inclusiveness within agricultural education learning environments, particularly as it relates to minority populations.

Education:

Ph.D.in agricultural education, with a minor in instructional technology, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa
M.S. in agricultural education, North Carolina A & T State University 
B.S. in agricultural education, minors in animal science, economics North Carolina A & T State University

Godfrey C. Ejimakor, Ph.D.
Professor of Applied Economics & Agribusiness

Dr. Godfrey C. EjimakorContact information:
Dr. Godfrey C. Ejimakor
167 Carver Hall
Phone: (336)334-7943
Fax: (336)334-7793
E-mail: ejimakor@ncat.edu

Research interests:
Economics of energy crops; economics of horticultural and floricultural products; energy, environmental and natural resource economics, commodity markets and risk analysis, agricultural policy.

Education:
Ph. D. in Agricultural Economics, Texas Tech University
M.S. in Agricultural Economics, North Carolina A&T State University
B.S. in Agricultural Economics, North Carolina State University

Paula Faulkner
Assistant Professor

Paula FaulknerA-21 CH Moore Agricultural Research Station
Greensboro, NC 27411
336-285-4724 office; 336-334-7684 fax, 
pefaulkn@ncat.edu email

 
Educational Background

Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, M.S. and B.S. North Carolina A&T State University
Description of  Research:  
Research focus is based on diversity initiatives in food and agricultural sciences related to recruiting and retaining underrepresented groups for education and careers in food and agricultural sciences,  multicultural education, teacher preparation for working with individuals with special needs (special populations).


Dr. Benjamin Gray
Associate Professor of Rural Sociology and Graduate Coordinator

Dr. Benjamin GrayContact:
Room A-27, CH Moore Agricultural Research Station
Greensboro, NC  27411
Phone:  (336) 334-7072
Fax:     (336) 334-7658

Education
Ph.D. in sociology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 
M.S. in sociology from North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina    M.S.      
M.S. in agricultural economics with a focus in rural development, North Carolina A&T State University
B.S. in agricultural business, North Carolina A&T State University      
A.A.S. in agricultural business from Davidson County Community College, Lexington,

For more information about Dr. Gray’s research activities, see (Re:search magazine, page 4 vol. 5, 2008)

Research interests:  
Health care, poverty, social changes and rural development, community and rural leadership, and other sociological issues affecting rural America. Use of the scientific method to show the differences that exist in the quality of life between rural and urban populations.

Kenrett Y. Jefferson-Moore, Ph.D.
Assistant professor, agricultural economics

Dr. Kenrett Y. Jefferson-MooreContact Information:
Dr. Kenrett Y. Jefferson-Moore
154-A Carver Hall
1601 E. Market Street
Greensboro, NC  27411
336.334.7943 (Office)
336.334.7793 (Fax)
Email: jykenret@ncat.edu

Research interests:
Rural entrepreneurship (adults and youth), international markets for small-farm commodities, the economics of value-added crops and the economics of invasive species, market analysis of organic produce in North Carolina, career development of minorities in food and agribusiness industries

For more information about Dr. Jefferson-Moore’s research activities, see (Re:search magazines, page 9 vol. 5, 2008), and (page 25, vol. 6, 2009).

Degree Information
Ph.D., Auburn University
M.S., Alabama A&M University
B.S., Southern University and A&M College

Osei-Agyeman Yeboah, Ph.D
Associate professor and interim director for the International Trade Center

Dr. Osei YeboahContact information:Office: A-25 C.H. Moore Agricultural Research Station
Phone: (336) 285-4727
Fax:      (336) 334-7658
E-mail:   oyeboah@ncat.edu

Education:
Ph. D in Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
M.S. in Production Economics, North Carolina A&T State University 
B.S. in Agricultural Economics, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology, Ghana

Research interests:
Environmental economics and nonmarket valuation; international trade economics and international marketing; agricultural marketing and cooperatives. Applied econometrics, general equilibrium modeling and policy, production economics.

To read more about Dr. Yeboah’s research activities, see (Re:search magazine, page 12, vol. 5, 2008); and (page 23, vol. 6, 2009) and (Re:search magazine, page 10, vol. 3, 2006)

Chastity Warren English
Adjunct assistant professor

Dr. Chastity Warren EnglishContact information:
Office: 242-A Carver Hall
Phone: (336) 334-7711
Fax:      (336) 334-7257
E-mail:  ckwarren@ncat.edu

Research interests: 
Youth development, leadership, diversity representation in agricultural education, teacher education.

Education
*Ph.D. Career and Technical Education, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
 M.S. Agricultural Education, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
 B.S. Agricultural Education, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

Department of Animal Sciences

Dr. Radiah A. Corn Minor
Assistant Professor of Immunology

Dr. Radia MinorContact information:
Office: Room 107h Webb Hall 
Laboratory: Room 236 Webb Hall
Phone:  (336) 334-7709
Fax:  (336) 334-7288
Email: rcminor@ncat.edu

Education: 
Ph.D. in immunology, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN.
B.S. in Biology, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL.

Use of cell and molecular biology and in vitro and in vivo models to investigate mammalian immune regulation. How dietary supplements affect the immune response in mammals, specifically the role of beta-glucan on the immune response to inhaled chitin, an abundant polysaccharide that is associated with allergic asthma.  The intention of this research is to apply the knowledge gained from the mouse model to benefit the health and well being of domestic animals as well as humans. Working in collaboration with Dr. W. Willis to investigate how mushrooms alter the immune system of chickens.

 

Dr. Mulumebet (Millie) Worku 
Professor of animal sciences, biotechnologist

Dr. Mulumebet WorkuContact information:
Office: Room 229b Webb Hall 
Phone: 336-334-7615 X2020
Fax: 336-334-7688
Email: Worku@ncat.edu  

Research interests:
Use of cutting-edge tools of biotechnology to: Decipher gene expression patterns in defense against inflammatory diseases, including bovine mastitis, at the molecular and cellular levels; characterize the role of inflammatory mediators; conduct small ruminant research; inform new strategies to modulate the inflammatory response; reduce antibiotic contamination, and improve milk quality for animal health and welfare and public health; working toward establishing a center of excellence for studies in genomic diversity.

Read more about Dr. Worku’s research activities here: (Re:search magazine, vol. 4 2007, page 8) and (Re:search magazine, vol. 2 2005, page 18)

Education:
B.Sc. Addis Ababa University, Alemaya College of Agriculture, Ethiopia 
M.S. and Ph.D. University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

Dr. Abraham Woldeghebriel
Associate professor of animal sciences

Dr. Abraham WoldeghebrielOffice: Suite 107C, Webb Hall,
Phone: 336-334-7709
Fax: 336-334-7288
Email: awoldegh@ncat.edu

Education:       
Ph. D., New Mexico State University,
MS., New Mexico State University,
B.S. Addis Ababa University, Alamaya College of Agriculture, Ethiopia
Diploma, Veterinary College, Debre-Zeiti, Ethiopia

Research interests:
Animal nutrition and the interplay between bio-availability of nutrients and physiological processes and responses of all livestock animals; currently investigating the role of prebiotic-factors and foods on gastro-intestinal health, using pigs as a model.


Department of Family and Consumer Sciences Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

Salam A. Ibrahim, Ph.D
Professor of food science

Dr. Salam A. IbrahimContact information:
Office: 171-B Carver Hall 
Phone: (336) 334-7328
Fax: (336) 334-7239
Email: ibrah001@ncat.edu

Research interests:
Functional foods with emphasis on probiotic cultures and plant extracts; viability and functionality of probiotic cultures in food products; use of Lactic acid bacteria as protective and starter cultures in foods; quality and consumer acceptability of dairy foods; food safety.

Read more about Dr. Ibahim’s activities here (Re:search magazine, page 14, vol. 6 2009) and here: (Re:search magazine, page 10, vol.  5 2008)

Education:
Post-doctoral Associate, University of Minnesota; Rush University Medical Center 
Ph.D. Food Science, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
M.S. Dairy Science, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 
B.S. Food Technology, University of Mosul, Iraq

Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Design

Dr. Omon S. Isikhuemhen

Dr. Omon IsikhuemhenContact information:
Office: Room 207 Carver Hall
Phone: (336) 334-259
Fax: (336) 334-7844
Email:  omon@ncat.edu

Education:
Ph.D., Institute of Microbiology, Prague, Czechoslovakia
M.S. University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
B.S. University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

Research interests:
Fungi and their application in food, agriculture, and environmental problems; mushroom domestication, breeding and industrial production technologies; biotechnological approaches to truffle detection and inoculation on seedlings; white rot fungi mediated  biodegradation/modification;  lignocellulosics from plant biomass; development of mushroom products for use in animal production.

Louis E.N. Jackai, Ph. D.
Chair and professor in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Design

Dr. Louis JackaiContact Information:
Office: 238 Carver Hall
Phone: 336-334-7543
Fax:     336-3340-7844
Email: lejackai@ncat.edu

Research interests: 
Study of insect-plant interactions; insect nutritional ecology; Integrated Pest Management in crop and urban/household systems; post-harvest resource management and protection, food and environmental safety from a pesticide use perspective; alternatives to pesticides.

Education:
Ph.D. Entomology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois
M.S. Zoology and Botany, University of Wisconsin-Superior
B.S. Zoology-Botany (major) Education (minor) University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana

Charles W. Raczkowski, Ph.D.
Soil Scientist and Adjunct Associate Professor

Dr. Charles W. RaczkowskiResearch interests: 
Soil and water quality; soil water dynamics; soil and water conservation; soil management and crop production. For more about Dr. Raczkowski’s work in soil sciences, see  (Re:search magazine, page 20, vol. 3, 2006)

Contact Information
Office: 235-B Carver Hall
Phone: (336) 334-7779
Fax:      (336) 334-7844
E-mail:   raczkowc@ncat.edu

Education:
Post-Doc Soil Science (Soil Erosion), USDA-ARS National Soil Erosion Laboratory
Ph. D Soil Science (Soil Physics/Soil management), North Carolina State University 
M.S. Soil Science (Soil Fertility), Kansas State University 
B.S. Agronomy, Kansas State University

Dr. Lijun Wang, P.E., C.E.M.
Assistant Professor of Biological Engineering


Dr. Lijun WangOffice: 121, Sockwell Hall
Phone: (336) 334-7787 
Fax: (336) 334-7270
E-mail: lwang@ncat.edu
Webpage: http://www.ncat.edu/~lwang

Education: 
Ph.D., agricultural and food engineering, National University of Ireland, Dublin
M.S., chemical engineering, South China University of Technology
B.Eng., chemical engineering, Zhengzhou University, China

Research Interests:
Bioenergy technologies, bio-based products, and energy efficiency and management in processing facilities. As a licensed professional engineer in chemical engineering and certified energy manager, Dr. Wang has a broad array of expertise and experience in cellulosic ethanol fermentation, biomass gasification, extrusion of biodegradable plastics, extraction of nutraceuticals from plant materials, unit operations of food processing, value-added processing of food and agricultural wastes, energy efficiency technologies, and energy management. For more about Dr. Wang’s research, please visit his website: http://www.ncat.edu/~lwang

Dr. Guochen Yang
Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Design

Dr. Guochen YangCarver Hall 224-B
Telephone: 336-334-7779, Fax: 334-336-7844
E-mail: yangg@ncat.edu

Educational Background:
Ph.D. Horticulture & Forestry (plant biotechnology), University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL).
M.S. Horticulture (plant biotechnology), UNL.
B.S. Horticulture (vegetable crops), Jilin Agricultural University, P.R. China.

Research Interest:

Plant biotechnology (tissue culture/micropropagation) is my area of expertise. My research interests include genetic transformation and using applied plant biotechnology techniques for economic development including rescue of endangered species, mass-propagation of rare species, and rapid multiplication of those plant species with high economic value, and using tissue culture techniques to produce bioactive compounds and plant-based medicines and nutraceuticals, and genetic transformation for bio-fuel production and value-added crops.

Dr. Jiaunmei YuDr. Jianmei Yu
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences

Carver Hall 171-B
Telephone: 336-334-7963, Fax: 336-334-7239
E-mail: jyu@ncat.edu

Educational Background:

  • Ph.D. Food Science, Louisiana State University (LSU), Baton Rouge, LA.
  • M.S. Food Engineering (Sugar Engineering), South China University of Technology, Guangzhou, China
  • B.S. Chemical Engineering, Kunming University of Technology (former Yunnan Institute of Technology), Kunming, China.

Research Interest:

Food processing and food chemistry are my areas of expertise. My research interests include (1) food component stability, food ingredient interaction and their effects on food product development; (2) improvement of food quality and safety by postharvest technology; (3) functional foods and nutraceuticals with emphasis on the mechanism study of functional food ingredients on the prevention of obesity.

Jenora T. Waterman, Ph.D.Jenora T. Waterman, Ph.D.
Department of Animal Sciences
Assistant Professor of Functional Genomics
Webb Hall 229c
Greensboro, NC 27411
Phone:  (336) 285-4815
Fax:  (336) 334-7288

Email address: jdwatem@ncat.edu

Education and Training:
B.S., Biology, Bennett College for Women, Greensboro, NC
M.S., Biology, North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC
Ph.D., Functional Genomics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Post-doctoral Fellow, NCSU-College of Veterinary Medicine, Raleigh, NC 

Research Interests:
Waterman lab research efforts focus on elucidating the extent of environmental and functional genomic/proteomic influences on the pathophysiology of respiratory diseases.  We employ comparative genomics and reverse translational medicine approaches to study NF-kB-mediated inflammation, oxidant stress and hyperreactivity in the airways of laboratory and farm animals, and humans.  Ongoing projects evaluate the effect of agricultural dusts on respiratory function in pigs with public health implications.  Model systems include fully differentiated primary airway epithelial cells and cell lines (from mice, pigs, cows and humans) maintained in a unique air-liquid interface.  Cells grown in this manner are essentially identical to cells in the body with regard to structure and function.

Points of Pride