LSU AgCenter and LSU Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness Awarded Three Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate Fellowships

02/06/2012 03:51 PM

BATON ROUGE – A group of faculty from the LSU AgCenter and LSU’s Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness was recently awarded $238,500 from the Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate Fellowship, or NNF, Grants Program to provide three Ph.D. fellowships beginning in August 2012. The department was one of only 12 recipients of this prestigious fellowship, which are awarded in the areas of food and agricultural sciences.


Members of the grant team are all professors in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness; members include Project Director Joshua Detre and Co-Project Directors Matt Fannin, Ashok K. Mishra, Wes Harrison, Rex Caffey and Kurt Guidry.


Detre said that the department would use the fellowship to recruit Ph.D. students to conduct research and extension activities related to improving the resiliency and economic viability of rural communities and their stakeholders – agribusinesses, farmers and governmental agencies – in response to natural disaster and environmental risks, particularly in the Delta and Gulf Coast regions. The faculty funded by the grant conduct economic research in a number of areas, such as fisheries, crops, consumer economics and community development.


The review panel for the grant had the following to say about the LSU AgCenter and LSU Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness faculty, “They have outstanding faculty members who have won numerous awards, they are highly qualified personnel with years of useful experience, and they have an impressive track record.”


“Doctoral students interested in applying for the fellowship should take note of the review panel’s comment about the success of the department’s current and former graduate students,” Fannin said.


The review panel also indicated that the department attracts high quality graduate students and their graduate students are successful in getting jobs in several sectors. Moreover, the panel highlighted that the academic program has great potential to produce top quality leaders in the agricultural management and economics areas.


Detre said that the fellows will have the opportunity to work with two established centers of national prominence – The Center for Natural Resource Economics and Policy and the Louisiana Center for Rural Initiatives – which provide unique learning and professional opportunities beyond the classroom. Participation in the activities of these centers will enhance the students’ professional expertise and provide them the opportunity to interact with faculty in a variety of academic disciplines. The importance of these centers was noted by the review panel in their summary comments on the experiential learning opportunities created by these centers for the fellows.


More information on the fellowships can be obtained via the LSU Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness website, which can be found online through the LSU College of Agriculture's website at Click the “Our Offices” section at the top of the page, then click “Departments.” The department can also be followed through its page on Facebook.

Aaron  Looney 
LSU Media Relations

Posted on Monday, February 6, 2012