The Midwest Poultry Consortium’s “Pullet-zer Prize” is named in fun, but it’s sincere in recognizing outstanding teaching. This year’s recipients included Dr. Greg Fraley, professor of biology at Hope College.
While echoing the well-known journalism and literary awards, the “Pullet-zer” name reflects the consortium’s focus. A pullet is a young hen, typically less than a year old.
The honor is conferred by the students of the consortium’s two-year “Center of Excellence Scholarship/Internship Program” (COE), based at the University of Wisconsin. Spread across two summers, the intense, research-based, 12-week poultry science curriculum is intended to better prepare students for employment within the poultry industry.
Fraley has been volunteering to teach COE’s graduate-level avian physiology course since 2010. The 36 members of this year’s graduating class named him the teacher of the year for their 2016 session. He received the award during COE’s year-end banquet and awards ceremony held in the class’ honor on Tuesday, July 17.
Fraley has been a member of the Hope faculty since 2004. His areas of expertise include poultry welfare and well-being. Specifically, he is interested in how environmental changes alter brain chemistry and gene expression that regulates feeding, growth and reproductive performance. He studies basic neurobiological and endocrine pathways, and relates them to housing conditions in the duck poultry industry.
His teaching in the Department of Biology at Hope includes introductory biology, physiology, comparative anatomy and other courses.
In his research program, Fraley works collaboratively with Hope students. He has received more than $1 million in external grants in support of his research, and he has been the author or co-author — often with his students — of more than 50 articles published in scientific journals. In 2015, he and his team received an award of appreciation for their significant contributions toward duck research and production in the poultry industry.
He also serves as the pre-veterinary medicine advisor at Hope, and is on Board of Trustees of the American Pre-Veterinary Medicine Association (APVMA). He is the faculty advisor for the Club Animalia student organization at Hope, which has won multiple awards from the APVMA, including the National Community Service Award for the past five years.
Fraley completed his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees at the University of Maryland, College Park in 1989 and 1992 respectively, and his doctorate at the University of Washington in 1998. Prior to coming to Hope, he conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Washington; Washington State University; and University of California, Los Angeles.