The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) announces Dr. Morgan Pfeiffer as the Ph.D Division recipient and Michael Cropp as the Master’s Division recipient of the 2019 AMSA Student Teacher “Cleaver” Award. A meat cleaver is resilient and designed to break through soft bones and cartilage. Graduate teaching assistants are encouraged to be “cleavers,” by being resilient in teaching abilities, breaking through to students and enhancing their knowledge. The tough metal and thick blade of a cleaver is unique and more durable compared to other knives. Graduate students are expected to be durable through their own obligations, and above all to create a unique learning experience for students. The Student Teacher “Cleaver” Award is sponsored by the AMSA Student Membership. Dr. Morgan Pfeiffer and Michael Cropp will be honored on Tuesday, June 25, 2019 at a special awards banquet during the AMSA 72nd Reciprocal Meat Conference in Loveland, Colo.

Dr. Morgan Pfeiffer
Dr. Morgan Pfeiffer recently finished her Ph.D. in Animal Science from Oklahoma State University. She is originally from Meeker, Colorado, and currently lives in Oklahoma with her husband on their family farm. She received her B.S. in Animal Science and Agricultural Communications and her M.S. in Animal Science from Oklahoma State University. 

While working on her undergraduate degree she was a member of the 2012 Meat Judging Team, 2013 Livestock Judging Team, and 2014 National Champion Meat Animal Evaluation Team. She was named an All-American in both Meat and Livestock Judging. Additionally, she was actively involved across campus as an ambassador, academic mentor and officer in many clubs. She completed internships with Cargill, the United States House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture, and the American Meat Science Association.

While obtaining her M.S. and Ph.D. at OSU she was fortunate to help coach 5 meat judging teams, 3 of which were named National Champions. Pfeiffer was also actively involved in leadership roles serving as the President of the AMSA Student Board and the Animal Science Graduate Student Association. She assisted in conducting various consumer studies, organized OSU’s efforts with the National Beef Quality Audit, led the Injection Site Audit, and recently completed her dissertation evaluating the sensory, tenderness, and fatty acid profile differences in pasture versus grain finished beef over 4 years. Morgan has joined the Oklahoma Beef Council as the Marketing Director. She believes, regardless of where her career leads her, she will work to the best of her ability to give back to the agricultural industry and instill in the younger generation the same passion she has for the industry. 

Michael Cropp
Michael Cropp is currently a graduate student at Iowa State University where he completed his M.S. degree in Meat Science in December 2018 and is now enrolled in a Ph.D. program at ISU. Cropp is originally from Damascus, Maryland where he grew up on a family beef cattle operation. Cropp received his B.S. degree in Animal Science and Industry from Kansas State University in 2016. While at KSU, Michael was a member of four competitive judging teams; wool, meats, livestock, and the meat animal evaluation team as well as active in multiple agricultural clubs and held several leadership positions.

Cropp’s M.S. degree research focused on the effects of active packaging on the color stability and shelf life attributes in processed meat products. As a student at ISU, he has served as an assistant coach for the RMC Quiz Bowl team and the Livestock Meat Animal Evaluation team as well as a teaching assistant for the undergraduate Processed Meats course. Additionally, Cropp has served in multiple leadership positions through the Meat Science Club. His current research is focused on active packaging impacts on food quality and food safety attributes in processed meat products.

Source: AMSA