The goals of this project are (a) to provide 60 scholarships for students with financial need and academic talent who declare majors in Agricultural Science programs and (b) to increase the number of students who successfully complete a 2-year course of study in agriculture and transfer as an Agricultural Science major to a 4-year university.
Intellectual Merit: Multiple recruitment approaches are being implemented, including print and digital media and student and parent presentations. Specific outreach efforts are made to traditionally underrepresented students and students pursuing a career in Agriculture Education. Scholarships are awarded through a competitive process based on financial need, GPA, essay, interview, and recommendation. Recipients receive support services through cohort-based activities such as faculty mentoring, advising, leadership training, social activities, professional development opportunities, and an intensive Agriculture Summer Institute.
Broader Impacts: The program is preparing highly-educated future Agricultural Science professionals such as agriculture economists, farm owners and engineers, technicians, and future teachers. Students receive training to become mentors for future cohorts, creating a network of peers and increasing further collaborative opportunities. The programmatic structure of this program serves as a model for other science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) based courses of study throughout the college, as well as in other institutions.