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USDA Grants Aim to Expand Science Capacity at Non-Land-Grant Colleges and Universities

Media Contact: Jennifer Martin (202) 720-8188
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WASHINGTON, July 2, 2014 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced the availability of $4 million in grants to support research, education and outreach activities at non-land-grant colleges and universities. The funding is authorized through the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Farm Bill).

“While NIFA has a rich and successful history with our land-grant university partners, we need all hands on deck working together to solve the pressing challenges facing our agricultural enterprise today,” said Sonny Ramaswamy, NIFA director. “This funding for the nation’s non-land-grant institutions will build their capacity to conduct high-quality agricultural science, educate a diverse workforce and bring real-world solutions to the American people.”

The Non-Land-Grant Colleges of Agriculture (NLGCA) Program focuses on improving research, outreach and postsecondary level educational activities related to food, agriculture, natural and renewable resources, human sciences and other similar disciplines. NLGCA will also support the economic vitality of rural communities by funding new degree programs that emphasize new and emerging employment opportunities.

The goals of the NLGCA program are to strengthen the capacity of NLGCA institutions to develop infrastructure to carry out agriculture research, teaching and outreach activities; enhance the ability of NLGCA faculty members to engage in agricultural professional development opportunities; and increase the number, quality and diversity of qualified graduates entering the food and agriculture workforce.

The deadline for applications is September 5, 2014. Applicants are required to request and receive certification from NIFA that they meet the requirements of being a non-land-grant college of agriculture.

Today’s announcement was authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. The Farm Bill builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past five years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers. Since enactment, USDA has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit

Through federal funding and leadership for research, education and Extension programs, NIFA focuses on investing in science and solving critical issues impacting people's daily lives and the nation's future. For more information, visit


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