A Kansas State University faculty member in the College of Veterinary Medicine is one of six professors throughout the country to win a 2012 Excellence in College and University Teaching in the Food and Agricultural Sciences Regional Teaching Award.

Dan Thomson, the Jones Professor of Production Medicine, received the award from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. The award recognizes six outstanding faculty members on the basis of their ability as classroom teachers, use of innovative teaching methods, scholarship and service to students and their profession.

Kansas State is first in the nation in terms of teaching awards received, with a combined total of 13 national and regional awards.

Thomson teaches courses in feedlot production medicine, animal welfare and clinical nutrition at Kansas State. 

“My philosophy is to motivate and transfer usable knowledge to students so they will walk out of my classroom wanting to continually learn new ways to improve animal well-being, food safety and animal health,” he said.

Thomson is also director of Kansas State’s Beef Cattle Institute, which provides education, research and outreach to beef producers. His research efforts have brought more than $33 million in grants to his program. He serves as the animal welfare adviser to McDonald’s and the Food Marketing Institute and has chaired the World Organization for Animal Health’s Beef Cattle Production and Animal Welfare Committee.

Thomson has been recognized for his teaching before when he received the Kansas State Novartis Excellence in Teaching Award in 2005 and 2009, and also when he was named teacher of the semester at Texas Tech University’s College of Agriculture in 2000.

The Regional Teaching Award is sponsored by the APLU, USDA and American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Thomson and the other award recipients each receive a $2,000 stipend to improve teaching at a school of their choice.

“This may be an individual award,” Thomson said, “but I couldn’t do this job without the aid of others along the way.”