News

Dr. James Diamond, Dean of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Retires

Aug 12, 2008

Doylestown, PA -- (August 11, 2008)  -- Dr. James E. Diamond, of Ottsville, PA, dean of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at Delaware Valley College, retired August 31, 2008 after a shining 47-year career.

A farmer, educator and international consultant, Diamond has worked in 49 countries on five continents. During his time at Delaware Valley College, Diamond developed many programs and grant proposals and has teamed with Penn State's  4-H staff  to bring at-risk youth to Del Val's A Day so that the children would learn where their food comes from; he is a part-time livestock/woodland farmer and serves as reviewer for the "Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education." Diamond has authored "Domestic Animal Bells from Around the World" and co-authored "Historical Excerpts of Pennsylvania Granges" and has been recognized by "Who's Who" in American Education in the East.

As dean of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, he was responsible for overseeing all academic-related matters, including program development, evaluation, faculty development, strategic planning and budgeting, for the Agriculture and Environmental Sciences departments at DelVal.  Diamond earned his Ph.D., from Pennsylvania State University and served as an assistant professor at the University in the Department of Agricultural and Extension Education, where he was responsible for the Agricultural Science Major, served as director of Internship Programs for College of Agricultural Sciences and served as director of Instructional Materials Services.

Global education has been of particular interest to Diamond. During his tenure at the college, he helped develop and shape international programs, flavored by years serving in the Peace Corps and as an international agriculture and extension consultant. With Diamond's support, faculty now integrate international activities into their curricula, including taking students to dairy farms in Ireland, food science students to the culinary capitals of Paris and Athens, horticulture students to England to study gardens and floriculture students to the Netherlands to see first-hand the international auction of flowers.

In 2007, Diamond spearheaded an ongoing exchange program with the University of Podlasie in Siedlce, Poland, offering exchange visits to students, faculty and staff between the institutions to globalize curriculum and experiences for both communities. So far, DelVal students have traveled to Poland twice, and University of Podlasie students have visited DelVal this past October.

Last year, Diamond received the 2007 Honorary County Agent Award from the Pennsylvania Association of County Agents, which recognizes outstanding performance in agricultural programming.
In 1982, he had his first international assignment with PSU in Mali and Cameroon. In 1986, he went to Swaziland as an extension-teaching specialist and helped develop their research station.

After retiring from Penn State, he became a freelance international consultant for the United Nations and the US Agency for International Development. He has done extension work in 47 different countries on 4 continents. One of his more noteworthy accomplishments occurred in the Far East, where his work helped reform the Agri-Technical schools in the People's Republic of China. They adopted his recommended "learning-by-doing" concept, and today the model is used by 40,000 teachers in 365 schools in China.

Diamond earned his bachelor's degree in animal husbandry from Delaware Valley College in 1961; his master's degree in counseling from Lehigh University and his Ph.D. in Agricultural Education from The Pennsylvania State University.