Sports

Golf player looks back on his time at ABAC

     The spring 2019 semester for ABAC’s golf team is underway. Earlier this month, the team traveled to Melbourne, FL for the Eastern Florida Invitational where they finished in seventh place with an overall score of 907 points. ABAC’s Adam Park and Will Bozeman placed within the top 15 of 72 players.

     Bozeman individually finished with a total of 221 points. He signed on to play for Coach Larry Brynnes when he first came to ABAC in 2017. He attended Westwood Christian Academy before coming to ABAC.

     This is Bozeman’s last semester at ABAC. He will be graduating in May and said that while he is excited, he is a little sad.

     “This is my last semester at ABAC for golf, I am a little sad about it, I’m really going to miss my Coach, Larry Byrnes, and all of my teammates.”

     Bozeman’s teammates for the spring 2019 roster are Joshua Campbell, Matthew Cheek, Hunter Dokey, Thomas Lupien, Adam Park and Tyler White. Bozeman said that his favorite memory of being a part of the golf team is from his freshman season when ABAC’s golf team won the region and district tournament and made it to the National Tournament.

     Golfing has always been an important part of Bozeman’s life. When asked how long he had been playing he said, “I have been playing golf ever since I could stand up, so probably since I was about one or two.” This dedication to the game has led to Bozeman pursuing it throughout his academic career. Bozeman is a turfgrass and golf course management major.

     Bozeman said he plans on continuing his golf career and attending a Division I school. He wishes the best for upcoming and hopeful players on the golf team.

     “The best advice that I can give to the future players would be that short game is very important, always work on your short game.”

     Bozeman and the rest of ABAC’s golf team will be traveling to Albany, GA for the Georgia Southwestern Invitational on Feb. 24-26. Good luck to the team and to Bozeman on his senior year.

Agriculture

Professor Spotlight: Dr. Sergio Pichardo

     Sergio Pichardo joined ABAC as an agriculture professor last fall. Pichardo is originally from León, Nicaragua. It was there that he attended the National Agriculture University and earned his Bachelor of Science in agronomy.

     Pichardo traveled halfway across the world to pursue his master’s degree at Uppsala University in Sweden. He received his Master’s in Plant Pathology and Mycology at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala, Sweden. Pichardo finally earned his Ph.D. in Entomology and Plant Pathology at Mississippi State University (MS).

     While at MS, Pichardo worked as a teaching assistant and research teaching assistant. He also taught genetics and microbiology at Thomas University in Nicaragua for 15 years. After hearing about a position opening at ABAC from a colleague, Pichardo decided to apply. Within a week after his interview, he was hired. He officially began teaching at ABAC in August of 2018.

     Pichardo currently teaches fundamentals of plant protection and insect pest management. He said that grades are extremely important and want to make sure students are prepared. He uses different methods to help students learn materials including games and extra-credit work. Pichardo doesn’t just assign his student’s classwork but also lets them do hands-on work.

     His students have visited the greenhouse at UGA and went to the farm on campus to see how sprayer calibration works.  Pichardo said that knowing how to use pest management equipment like this is just as important as learning in the classroom.

     Next semester he will teach fundamentals of plant protection alongside plant disease management. He also plans on using different academic tools in the future to help students even more. When he isn’t working, Pichardo enjoys biking, going on hikes and visiting parks.

     Since coming to ABAC, Pichardo has had a great experience. “Teaching is something I enjoy doing.” He also said that the students here are very respectful and engaged. “If I can do something to help them reach their goals then I will do it,” Pichardo said that the staff is just as nice as the students. “I feel very comfortable here at ABAC. I like the environment. The faculty is friendly, and the students are nice. It’s a good way to live.”

Agriculture

New agriculture professor becomes part of the ABAC family

     Farish Mulkey became a part of ABAC’s faculty at the beginning of this semester and already feels at home. Mulkey is from Donaldsonville, GA and attended Seminole County High School. In 1984 he came to ABAC where he took up agricultural education.

     Mulkey said he has taught at a number of public schools before coming to ABAC. He taught for one year at Macon County High School and taught ag. education at Bainbridge for a few years. After Bainbridge, Mulkey decided to take a break from teaching and went to UGA, where he finished his masters in 1992. He chose to attend Texas A&M for his graduate program and worked as a graduate assistant from 1992 to 1994. It was there he realized his passion for teaching.

     “When I did graduate school at Texas A&M in 1994 I really felt like I was going to get into teacher education at a post-secondary level.”  He admits that after finishing at Texas A&M he limited himself. There were not many jobs in the area he resided in and he decided to go into teaching at public schools.

     The following year he moved back to Georgia and went to teach at Worth County Middle School before returning to Bainbridge to teach. Mulkey said this worked out for the best because he got to the chance to work with his five children during these years.

     “That’s one thing I really love about teaching ag: I had the opportunity to work with all of my children that were involved in, ag programs in middle and high school.” He says that this was very important to him and his wife.

     Mulkey decided to retire from teaching at public schools in June of 2018. Mulkey would return to ABAC, but this time as a professor. He began teaching here at ABAC in January of 2019.

     This semester he is teaching Greenhouse and Nursery Management, Agriscience and an Ag. Seminar Class. Even though he’s only been a part of the faculty for a few weeks, Mulkey said the students and staff are tremendous. He described ABAC as being team-oriented and very helpful.

     “Everyone that I have worked with has been willing to go above and beyond to help me to try to be successful and I appreciate that.”

     Mulkey advises that students take advantages of opportunities they have here at ABAC and to stay committed. In his downtime, Mulkey enjoys spending time with his family and learning new things in agriculture.

Lifestyles

Can you guess who’s the ‘Masked Singer?’

     Fox’s newest singing reality show, “The Masked Singer,” is keeping viewers guessing. It is adapted from the Korean show, “The King of Mask Singer,” and follows the same concept. Contestants perform in front of a panel of celebrity judges, but with a twist: the singers are also celebrities whose identities are concealed behind masks.

     Contestants face-off in pairs while the judges and live audience vote for the best performer. The singer who has the highest vote gets to stay and keep their mask on. Singers with the lowest votes are eliminated and must take off their mask and reveal their true identity. Hints are given throughout the show as to who is behind the colorful and extravagant masks.

     The star-studded judging panel includes Robin Thick, Ken Jeong, Jenny McCarthy and Nicole Scherzinger alongside host Nick Cannon. Singers come from all over the entertainment industry including athletes, comedians and singers. The show has aired five episodes so far, and already garnered a lot of attention.

     While the show received mixed reviews from critics, viewers have been intrigued. People watching the show from home have flooded social media with predictions of who is behind the masks. Some guessing the celebrities perfectly and others missing the mark completely.

     “The Masked Singer” is weird and completely over the top much like its’ Korean predecessor. However, this is what makes the show charming and unique. Much of the shows we see use the same formulas and plot-lines with not much variation. “The Masked Singer” actually defies this and is bringing something fresh to American television. American audiences are simply not used to gimmicks like those featured on “The Masked Singer.”

     Seeing their favorite celebrities in funny costumes with distorted voices is not something most viewers would imagine seeing. “The Masked Singer” is proving that audiences can be interested in shows that are considered out of the norm and is a step towards a different approach to shows here in America.  While the premise of the show is borrowed, it is still something new and bold for American audiences.

     “The Masked Singer” will air eight episodes in total for one season. Another season has already announced, and viewers are already preparing guesses for Thursday’s new episode. If you are looking for a show that is light-hearted, yet different and interesting then be sure to check out “The Masked Singer.”

Agriculture

Dr. Carroll shares his passion of wildlife and science

     Since joining ABAC in 2017, Dr. Matt Carroll has shared his love of the outdoors and science with his students. Carroll is a native of Clifton, VA and attended James W. Robinson High School. He said since he was young he had an appreciation of nature, animals and science. This would later motivate him to pursue a career in wildlife and sciences.

     Carroll did his undergraduate at the Mansfield University of Pennsylvania. He recalled that the school was very small and in the mountains.  “After that, I did my master’s at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville.” Carroll would go on to Columbus State for his Ph.D. It was there that he worked as a teaching assistant for the wildlife techniques course for two semesters.

     In August of 2017, Carroll came to ABAC after doing some research on the school. The transition to ABAC would be easy as he had experience with a small school atmosphere. Carroll spoke with the wildlife community and heard good things about the wildlife and forestry programs here at ABAC. “Everybody had good things to say about it.” During his first semester at ABAC, he taught techniques in wildlife management, wildlife ecology and management I, and forest measurements and mapping.

     Since then, he’s taught several more courses. One of his favorite classes to teach is the wildlife damage management course. “I have a background in that as well as trapping, so that is one of my favorites,” Carroll says he taught the course in the spring of 2018, and it was the first time in a few years that the class had been offered at ABAC.

     When asked what makes ABAC different from other colleges, Carroll said, “It’s definitely different in that there’s more of a teaching focus centered on students. Which I really like, and it was one of the draws for me to come to ABAC.” This semester he is teaching dendrology, forestry management and mapping as well as quantitative methods in forest resources.

     Carroll also offered some advice for students, “It’s important to follow things that you’re really passionate about, but also inform yourself about what it’s going to take.” He also advised students to study.

     When he’s not teaching, Carroll can be found hunting, fishing and playing with his nine-month-old puppy. Carroll also spent a summer volunteering with the US Fishing Wildlife Service in Barrow, Alaska. He wants his students to know that they can have opportunities like this as well.