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USDA National Scholars Program Applications Open for 2009 Academic School Year


WASHINGTON.- USDA/1890 National Scholars Program applications are now being accepted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the 2009 academic school year. Applications from high school seniors must be postmarked no later than Feb.1, 2009, and mailed to the USDA Liaison Office at the institution of the applicant’s choice.

“This program is a great partnership. College-bound students benefit from a terrific educational opportunity. At USDA, we benefit from mentoring the knowledge, talent, diversity, and skills needed for the future of agriculture,” said Secretary Ed Schafer.

The scholarship program between USDA and the 1890 Land-Grant Universities and Tuskegee University expands diversity through the recruitment of talented students to public service in agriculture-related fields, including food sciences, natural resource sciences and agricultural sciences.

Since 1992, USDA has funded scholarships for approximately 451 students. USDA has hired graduates into career positions.

USDA/1890 scholarship recipients receive full tuition, fees, books, use of laptop computers and printers, software, employment and benefits for each of the four years they pursue a Bachelor’s degree. For each year of the scholarship, students receive room and board provided by the partnering institutions. Students are required to work one year at USDA for each year of their scholarship.

For more information about the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program, contact Carl T. Butler, Director, USDA/1890 Programs, at (202) 205-5692 or by email at Additional information is also available online at

The mission of the Land-Grant system is to teach, conduct research and provide outreach. The system was initiated by President Abraham Lincoln with the passing the Morrill Act of 1862. A second Morrill Act was passed in 1890 to grant freed slaves and African Americans access to Land-Grant institutions in Southern states. The passage of this bill brought educational opportunities in technical, military and agricultural sciences to the general working class population who had no other access to higher levels of learning.

USDA selects scholars based on recommendations of participating 1890 Land-Grant Institutions and Tuskegee University. The 1890 Land Grant Institutions include: Alabama A&M University, Alcorn State University, Delaware State University, Florida A&M University, Fort Valley State University, Kentucky State University, Langston University, Lincoln University, North Carolina A&T University, Prairie View A&M University, South Carolina State University, Southern University, Tennessee State University, Tuskegee University, University of Arkansas Pine Bluff, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Virginia State University and West Virginia State University.

Nineteen USDA/1890 National Scholars were selected in 2008. They were: James Campbell, III, Athens, GA; Alisha Dowd, Pine Bluff, AR; Sirrena Favors, Atlanta, GA; Carlton Harris, Monticello, MS; Gerald Harvey, III, Leesburg, VA; Kayla Hedge, Langston, OK; Raphael Johnson, Saint Joseph, LA; Alicia Joseph, Opelousas, LA; Leah Marshall, Garrisonville, VA; Michael Mathews, Dallas, TX; Leonyce Moses, Greensboro, NC; Jamarious O’Neal, Pantego, NC; Ramonda Phelps, Augusta, GA; Jasmine Rosebrough, San Antonio, TX; Victoria Henderson-Turnipseed, Denver, CO; Raeven Wallace, East Saint. Louis, IL; Justin Washington, Hot Springs, AR; Henry Winkelman, Freeburg, MO; and Karla Wooten, Clarksville, TX.


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