Two dozen South Carolina State University freshmen, who call Orangeburg County home, are now pursing their dreams of becoming the next generation of agriculture-related entrepreneurs and professionals as recipients of the new SC State 1890 Research & Extension Agriculture Innovation Scholarship.
Orangeburg County residents, Kendra Clinton, Ozie Thompson, Tamirra Williams and Marquez Wortham are among the inaugural cohort, which is comprised of 24 recipients.
The Ag Innovation Scholarship Program covers, tuition, fees, books and room and board. As such, the ag innovation scholars are afforded the opportunity to graduate without student loan debt, as the fund covers the remaining balance after all other scholarships and aid are applied to the recipient’s account. Each recipient also received a complimentary laptop and will gain access to internship opportunities with USDA agencies.
Funding for the scholarship was provided by the United States Department of Agriculture-National Institute of Food and Agriculture through a $2.25 million grant awarded to SC State 1890. The grant supports SC State and USDA’s commitment to recruit, retain, train and graduate a career-ready workforce for the agriculture and ag-related industries.
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“The scholarship program also positions SC State University to contribute to the current demand of highly trained professionals who will advance the sustainable growth of agriculture, food, fiber and human sciences over the next few years,” said Dr. Louis Whitesides, vice president and executive director for SC State 1890 Research & Extension. “The agriculture industry is constantly evolving through the implementation of advanced technology, so it’s imperative that we develop our students to be at the forefront leading the change.”
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