The following is a company-submitted press release and does not necessarily represent the views or opinions of College Planning & Management magazine.

USDA Awards $18 Million for 1,890 Land-Grant Universities Research, Education and Extension Activities

WASHINGTON, DC – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced 53 grants totaling more than $18 million to support research, teaching and extension activities at 1890 historically black land-grant colleges and universities through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

“Earlier this year, we celebrated the 125th anniversary of the Second Morrill Act and USDA’s historic partnership with 1890 Historically Black Land-Grant Colleges and Universities,” says Vilsack. “Today’s announcement continues our partnership and will help ensure the schools are able to sustain our nation’s agricultural sector for another 125 years and beyond. We are pleased to be able to build the capacity of these important institutions and support the next generation of leaders in agriculture.”

Fiscal year 2015 grants include:

Teaching

  • Alabama A&M University, Normal, AL, $150,000
  • Alcorn State University, Lorman, MS., $299,918
  • Central State University, Wilberforce, OH, $599,997
  • Delaware State University, Dover, DE, $149,838
  • Fort Valley State University, Fort Valley, GA, $149,999
  • Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO, $277,298
  • North Carolina State A&T University, Greensboro, NC, $852,827 (4 awards)
  • Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, TX, $149,993
  • South Carolina State University, Columbia, SC, $1,196,162 (2 awards)
  • Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL, $442,731 (3 awards)
  • West Virginia State University, Institute, WV, $899,628 (2 awards)

Research

  • Alabama A&M University, Normal, AL, $1,093,892 (3 awards)
  • Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL, $1,100,000 (2 awards)
  • Alcorn State University, Lorman, MS, $500,632
  • Arkansas Pine Bluff, Pine Bluff, AR, $600,000
  • Delaware State University, Dover, DE, $499,982
  • Kentucky State University, Frankfort, KY, $1,194,942 (3 awards)
  • Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO, $300,000
  • North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC, $499,659
  • Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, TX, $295,132
  • Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA, $300,000
  • Southern Carolina State University, Columbia, SC, $444,029
  • Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN, $500,850 (2 awards)
  • University of Maryland – Eastern Shore, Princess Anne, MD, $1,198,419 (3 awards)
  • Virginia State University, Petersburg, VA, $586,879 (2 awards)
  • West Virginia State University, Institute, WV, $299,042

Extension

  • Alabama A&M University, Normal, AL, $249,963
  • Alcorn State University, Lorman, MS, $248,719
  • Delaware State University, Dover, DE, $249,993
  • Langston University, Langston, OK, $600,000
  • Tennessee State University, Nashville, TN, $805,923 (2 awards)
  • Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, AL, $226,869
  • Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA, $250,000
  • Virginia State University, Petersburg, VA, $599,582 (2 awards)
  • West Virginia State University, Institute, WV, $599,997

More information about these awards can be found on the NIFA website.

NIFA made the awards through the 1890 Institution Teaching, Research, and Extension Capacity Building Grants (CBG) program, which focuses on strengthening the partnerships among the universities, USDA and private industry through food and agricultural science, and advancing cultural diversity in the scientific and professional workforce by attracting more students from underrepresented groups.

NIFA provides support to historically black colleges and universities that were designated as land-grant universities (LGUs) in the Second Morrill Act in 1890. Grants to these universities support research, extension, and teaching in the food and agricultural sciences by building the institutional capacities of these schools. There are currently 19 institutions under the legislation.

Past successes from this program include an initiative aimed at attracting Lincoln University minority students to the environmental science field. Through workshops, mentorships, and recruitment activities with undergraduate and high school students, Lincoln University saw an increase in environmental science graduates who have move on to higher learning and environmental professions, as well as an increase in scholarships for students still in the program. Bioenergy researchers from South Carolina State University have also developed new logistical models, algorithms, and user-friendly simulations tools for modeling and evaluating biofuel and biomass.

Grants from 2015 include a West Virginia State University that focuses on the needs of grandparents who serve as primary caregivers for their grandchildren by improving the health behaviors of the grandparents through training, education, social work courses, and extension services. Researchers at University of Maryland-Eastern Shore will be studying nutrients and food safety in leafy greens and the impact that different growth media play, such as the greens being grown in hydroponic, aquaponics, or soil-based environment.

NIFA invests in and advances agricultural research, education, and extension and seeks to make transformative discoveries that solve societal challenges. To learn more about NIFA’s impact on agricultural science, visit nifa.usda.gov/impacts.

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