The Monsanto Fund Opportunity Scholarship Program is now accepting applications from Grade 12 students — and this year applicants can be from non-farm backgrounds.
The program has traditionally offered 65 entrance scholarships valued at $1,500 each to graduating Grade 12 students from farm families pursuing post-secondary studies in agriculture or agriculture-related fields. This year, eligible students can choose to pursue a post-secondary education in agriculture or food-related programs, including fields of study such as nutrition or the culinary arts. Up to 25 of a total of 65 scholarships will be offered to students from non-farm backgrounds.
“Our focus remains on encouraging quality young people to pursue careers in agriculture, and the majority of the scholarships will go to students from farms,” said Kelly Funke, public affairs manager with Monsanto Canada. “But more and more we are seeing that careers in food production, food preparation and nutrition are all part of the larger food system. That system needs great minds from many different walks of life.”
In addition to being enrolled in agriculture or food-related studies at a Canadian post-secondary educational institution, applicants must have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership capabilities, and a keen interest and involvement in their community. They must also write an essay on what role Canadian agriculture can play in the future of food and how they will contribute. Application forms and complete program details are available at monsanto.ca. The deadline for applications is June 15 and winning entries will be announced in September.
More than $1.7 million has been given out since the program launched in 1991. In 2012, the program was taken over by the Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of Monsanto Company.