The Musser International Turfgrass Foundation has selected Dr. James D. McCurdy, assistant professor and Turfgrass Extension Specialist at Mississippi State University, as the 2014 Award of Excellence recipient.
The award is given to outstanding Ph.D. candidates who, in the final phase of their graduate studies, demonstrate overall excellence throughout their doctoral program in turfgrass research.
McCurdy received his B.S. degree in Plant and Soil Science (specializing in Turfgrass and Golf Course Management) from University of Tennessee, Martin. He went on to earn his M.S. at University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He received his PhD from Auburn University where he worked with Scott McElroy and wrote his dissertation on “The Effects and Sustainability of Legume Inclusion within Warm-Season Turf Swards”.
“It is indeed an honor to be selected for such a prestigious award,” McCurdy said. “I hope to be able to make an impact on the turfgrass industry at the level of many previous award winners.” McCurdy indicated that he plans on working diligently with his students at Mississippi State University to prepare them for careers in turfgrass management while he continues to conduct applied and basic research.
The criteria for selecting award recipients include graduate work, academic record, dissertation, publications, leadership and extracurricular activities.
To date, awards have been granted to doctoral students from universities including; Arizona, Auburn, Cornell, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Michigan State, Rutgers, Tennessee, and Texas A & M.
To learn more about Professor H. Burton Musser, the foundation’s history and past recipients of the award, visit www.musserfoundation.org.