Amy Brandau, academic adviser, has received the CALS 2018 Outstanding Adviser Award.
"Amy has impacted many lives as an adviser, instructor and friend," said Gary Wynne, a senior in agricultural business and one of Brandau's advisees. "I have reached out to Amy numerous times with questions about scheduling classes, but also about life."
Brandau, an academic adviser in economics, is this year's recipient of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Outstanding Adviser Award. Since 2006, she's advised students and she takes her role seriously. It's important she said to have a personal connection with each student.
"I think that everybody needs a cheerleader while they're in college, and for some students it's me as their adviser," Brandau said. "From academics, to what's going on in their personal lives, to their careers, I try to be there."
Not only does Brandau directly advise students, she also co-coordinates eight agricultural business learning communities, teaches an orientation course, co-advises the Agricultural Business Club and co-leads study abroad trips. She makes those commitments, she said, to support students, but she especially enjoys the study abroad trips.
"Sharing my passion for travel is definitely a piece of it, but also I get to know those students so much better. I try to connect with students however I can, so sometimes it's going on a study abroad trip with them."
Although Brandau is honored to receive the award, she said she doesn't do her job with the intent to win awards.
"The award is like icing on the cake, but that's not why I do my job, I do it for the students," Brandau said.
Brandau received her bachelor's degree in agricultural business in 2000 and a master's in business administration in 2008 from Iowa State University.
Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences will present awards to faculty and staff on March 8 at its Spring-Semester Convocation and Awards Program in the Memorial Union.
By Ellen Bombela, CALS Communications Service
Photo by Christopher Gannon