Billye B Foster, Animal Production, Agricultural Science, Agricultural Education
Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Billye Foster grew up in a small town in Northeast Texas. The daughter of a cattle rancher and elementary teacher, Foster’s career is something of a hybrid of those of her parents. An agricultural education teacher, animal production specialist, communicator and student of diversity, Foster believes in lifelong learning and student-centered education. “The thing about teaching that has always fascinated me is the fact that I’m always learning from my students.” Foster holds degrees in Animal Production, Agricultural Production and Agricultural Education. Her most recent addition to her educational toolbox is a certification in Intercultural Communications. Working with students of all generations and backgrounds provides her with a unique opportunity to test a variety of pedagogical theories!
Billye has been active within the profession serving in a variety of leadership roles. National secretary/treasurer for Alpha Tau Alpha, secretary and second vice president for AAAE Western Region, first committee chair for the National FFA Creed Speaking CDE, ongoing chair of Arizona FFA Job Interview CDE and coordinator for the NAAE/Dodge Teachers Turn the Key program presentations for the past five years are among her accomplishments. In conjunction with her research focus of women in academic agriculture, Foster developed, edited and published the Desert Roses Newsletter for ten years. Desert Roses served as a support piece for women in agricultural education nationwide. Currently Dr. Foster is the Editor for The Agricultural Education Magazine. The Magazine has been in print since January 1929 and Foster is the first woman Editor.
During her 15 years at the University of Arizona, Billye taught “Teaching Agricultural Education Methods,” “Curriculum Design,” “Micro-computing,” “Youth Leadership,” “Agricultural Mechanics,” “Student Teaching,” “Grant Writing,” and “Women in Academic Agriculture.” After coordinating the student teaching program in Agricultural Education for seven years, Foster ended her career in Arizona teaching a general education class on diverse issues in contemporary society along with pieces of the curriculum development and methodology undergraduate courses. Dr. Foster served as a professor in the Department of Agricultural Education, and as Special Assistant for Diversity to the University of Arizona College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Dean.
Dr. Foster joined Tennessee Tech faculty and staff in January 2010. She lives in Cookeville with her husband Dan and their youngest son Brian Lee.