• Kelly Dyer, associate professor of genetics in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences,

Dyer, who joined UGA's faculty in 2007, uses innovative methods to teach courses in evolution and genetics, allowing students to explore cutting-edge research both in the classroom and laboratory environments. In addition to advising graduate students, while at UGA Dyer has mentored nearly 50 undergraduate students as well as several high school students and teachers in research projects.

Dyer is a 2012 recipient of a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, one of the most prestigious early career honors for researchers. She was a 2009 Lilly Teaching Fellow and has served on various nomination panels for elite scholarships, such as the Rhodes and Goldwater scholarsh ips, through the Honors program. She currently coordinates the genetics graduate program at UGA and serves on the councils of the Society for the Study of Evolution and the American Genetics Association.

  •  Sonia Hernandez, an associate professor with a joint appointment in Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources and the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study, a unit in the department of population health in the College of Veterinary Medicine

Hernandez, who became a tenure-track faculty member in 2008, uses a multidisciplinary approach to engage her students in courses related to wildlife diseases and conservation medicine. Her classes, including an experiential learning course taught in Costa Rica, incorporate meaningful real-world experiences alongside lectures and more traditional approaches, and she is dedicated to mentoring students and acting as an advocate for students who are underrepresented in her fields.

Hernandez is a 2013 recipient of the Warnell School's Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching, and she was named the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference Educator of the Year. She is a member of Warnell's Teaching Effectiveness Committee, which hosts a seminar series dedicated to improving teaching and mentoring, and has participated in UGA's Teaching Academy Fellows and Writing Fellows programs.