The National Black Farmers Association (NBFA) Scholarship Program today opened the application period for 2016 scholarships. The application site, https://scholarsapply.org/blackfarmersassociation, opened March 1 and will remain open until May 2, 2016, or until 100 applications have been received, whichever comes first.
Funded through a grant from the FCA Foundation the charitable arm of FCA US LLC, the program provides scholarships of up to $5,000 to students pursuing agriculture-related study at an accredited two-year or four-year college, university or vocational-technical school.
“Higher education provides transformational tools, knowledge and resources,” said Lesley Slavitt, Head of Civic Engagement, FCA US LLC, and CEO of the FCA Foundation. “It is a privilege for the FCA Foundation to be a partner in ensuring that the next generation of African-American farmers receives the training and skills that will help them to thrive.”
NBFA scholarship recipients are selected based upon several criteria, including academic performance, demonstrated leadership and participation in agricultural and community activities, and career goals and objectives.
“The scholarship funds went toward my tuition, which has helped to lift some of the financial burdens placed on my family and I,” said Michael Coleman, a 2015 NBFA scholarship recipient who is pursuing a degree in animal science at Alcorn State University. Coleman, a Raymond, Miss., native, was awarded a $5,000 NBFA scholarship.
Established in May 2015, the National Black Farmers Association Scholarship Program awarded 19 scholarships nationally – a total of $87,000 – to support the development of a new generation of African-American farmers.
“In 1910, nearly 1 million black farm families owned over 15 million acres of land. Today, less than 45,000 black farm families own 3 million acres,” said John Boyd, Jr., President of the National Black Farmers Association. “The National Black Farmers Association Scholarship Program is a huge step in the right direction for the survival of America’s black farmers.
“Educating black farmers provides an opportunity to increase and advance agricultural technology, which will be passed on as a vital part of our rich farming legacy to future generations.”