May 27, 2019

NIFA awards highlight land-grant programs and leaders making a difference

NIFA awards highlight land-grant programs and leaders making a difference

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) recently honored three land-grant university partners as part of their annual Day of Appreciation.

  • The Children’s Healthy Living Program, a program run through the University of Guam’s Cooperative Extension & Outreach service, received NIFA’s Mission Integration of Research, Education, and Extension Award. The program works with remote minority populations in the Pacific region to promote nutrition and physical activity.
  • The Great Plains Grazing Team, a network of scientists that includes researchers and extension specialists at Oklahoma State University, Tarleton State University, and USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, received the Multistate Efforts Award. This team develops science-based knowledge to “address climate adaptation and mitigation, and support on-farm decision-making in forage-based beef production systems.”
  • The Women in Ag Team, a part of Iowa State University’s Extension and Outreach program, received the Innovative Programs and Projects award. This team is dedicated to educating women in agriculture and empowering them to develop the skills and knowledge to make their farms and businesses successful.

NIFA also inducted three food and nutrition leaders into its Hall of Fame:

  • Dr. Charles Hibberd, who holds a Ph.D. in animal science and serves as Dean and Director of the University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension Division
  • Dr. Gina Eubanks, the Associate Vice Chancellor and Program Leader for Nutrition and Food Sciences at Louisiana State University
  • Dr. Ian Maw, who served for 15 years as the Vice President for Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources at the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities

The goal of the Apr. 25 Day of Appreciation was to recognize positive change made through agricultural research, education, and extension. “We are committed to supporting the research, education, and extension efforts of our partners,” said NIFA Director J. Scott Angle. “We value the contributions of the researchers and individuals whose work has significantly made a difference in elevating agriculture and science for the benefit of Americans.”

Since President Lincoln signed legislation to establish the first land-grant universities in 1862, this unique system has had vast impacts in food security, environmental issues and even energy use.

Learn more: National Academies Press: Colleges of Agriculture at the Land Grant Universities: A Profile