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New Faculty Tour 2018: A statewide look at UGA

The 2018 UGA New Faculty Tour wraps up today, after a five-day journey around the state showcasing agriculture and agritourism, industry, the Georgia coast and its rural communities. The tour stopped in 15 cities and passed through 48 counties, introducing faculty who have been at UGA for two or fewer years to the geography, culture, history and economic engines of the Empire State of the South:

The tour began with a welcome from UGA President Jere W. Morehead at the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education & Hotel. From there, the bus headed to Jaemor Farms near Gainesville, a working family farm that now draws hundreds of visitors a year for events and activities and offers fresh produce and other food including tomatoes, peaches and strawberries, boiled peanuts and fried pies.

“Many of our faculty come from other parts of the country and the world and this trip really opens their eyes to the diversity we enjoy here in the state of Georgia,” said Jennifer Frum, vice president for public service and outreach. “In addition they get to meet one another and discover common interests, which often leads to great interdisciplinary partnerships when they get back to campus.”

During the trip, participants visited:

  • Amicalola Falls State Park, the southern gateway to the Appalachian Trail;
  • the Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta;
  • the Georgia state Capitol, where faculty will hear from Georgia House Speaker David Ralston and University System of Georgia Chancellor Steve Wrigley;
  • the UGA Food Product Innovation and Commercialization Center at UGA-Griffin;
  • the City of Senoia, home to Riverwood Studios and “The Walking Dead”;
  • Kia Motors Manufacturing in West Point;
  • the Carnegie Library in Americus;
  • the UGA-Tifton campus;
  • the Okefenokee Swamp Park in Waycross;
  • UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant on Skidaway Island in Savannah;
  • the Wormsloe Institute for Environmental History in Savannah; and
  • the Georgia Ports Authority in Garden City

Franklin College was well-represented, including:

  • Pengpeng Bi, assistant professor in the Center for Molecular Medicine and Department of Genetics
  • Jorge Derpic, assistant professor in the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute and Department of Sociology 
  • Katie Erlich, assistant professor of psychology in the Center for Family Research     
  • Amanda Frossard, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry . 
  • David Fung, assistant professor of piano in the Hugh Hodgson School of Music, where he specializes in piano performance.
  • Gabriel Kooperman, assistant professor in the Department of Geography  
  • Franklin Leach, assistant professor of environmental health science in the Department of Chemistry   
  • Changwei Li, assistant professor of epidemiology in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics  
  • Sharina Maillo-Pozo, assistant professor in Latinx, Dominican/Dominican-American, Latin American and Caribbean studies in the Department of Romance Languages 
  • Cassia Roth, assistant professor of history   
  • Justin Strait, assistant professor in the Department of Statistics 


Welcome to all of our new colleagues and thanks to the Office of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach for the planning and organization of this important, now annual opportunity for engagement for new faculty with the state of Georgia and each other.

Image: New Faculty Tour participants learn about peanut research during a stop at UGA Tifton.From left: Glenna Read-Bullock, assistant professor of advertising and public relations in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication; Catherine Logue, professor veterinary microbiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine; and Franklin Leach, assistant professor of environmental health science in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. (photo: Shannah Cahoe Montgomery)

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