McConnel, Delevich, students recognized for research excellence

Research Symposium 2023 winners
Jon Oatley, sixth from right, Associate Dean for Research in the College of Veterinary Medicine, poses for a photo with faculty and student winners following the college’s annual Research Symposium, Nov. 2, 2023 in Pullman.

Associate Professor Craig McConnel was presented the Zoetis Award for Veterinary Research Excellence, largely in part for his research contributions to dairy cattle health and biosecurity, during the 25th annual College of Veterinary Medicine Research Symposium.

Since 1985, high-profile research faculty in the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine have been recognized with the annual honor for their advancements in the veterinary field.

McConnel, who is also the director of WSU’s Veterinary Medicine Extension, said the award was a team effort.

“Honestly, I think receiving this award is an amazing testament to developing collaborations. The projects reflected by this award are all based on cross-departmental and interdisciplinary engagement. Realistically, I’m simply a spokesperson reaping the benefits of teamwork,” he said.

McConnel’s varied research efforts include developing more effective classification strategies for dairy cow removals and to more fully understand the ecology of E. coliO157 on dairies. His research examines the influence of calf housing strategies on lifetime performance and the impact of dairy cow diseases on animal well-being and associated economic opportunity costs.

Kristen Delevich, an assistant professor in the college’s Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience department, was the recipient of the Dean’s Outstanding Junior Faculty Research Award.

Sponsored by the dean, the award is designed to recognize outstanding junior faculty who are already establishing themselves as innovators and leaders in their chosen fields. Faculty who are pre-tenure or clinical track faculty within six years of starting their independent research careers are eligible.

Awards were also distributed to student researchers from five categories: undergraduate student, graduate student, postdoctoral researcher, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine student/intern, and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine resident.

Out of all undergraduate researchers, Eva Rickard received first place in the undergraduate student category for her poster; Robert Hubbard received second place in the undergraduate research category.

Eric Winzenried received first place in the graduate student category; Elizabeth Goldsmith received second place in the category; and LeeLa Robinson took third place. Seham Hendawy topped the post-doctoral researchers’ category; Meg Nakazawa received second place. Kate Bouchard received the research award out of the veterinary student/intern pool, and Maya Boyle earned second place in the category. In the DVM resident category, Matthew Wun received first place and Lela Remington earned second place.