USDA Announces $14 Million for Hispanic-Serving Institutions
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- Hispanic-serving Institutions (HSIs) enroll 66% of Latino undergraduates nationwide, according to Excelencia in Education.
- The USDA grants will support career and educational opportunities in human science and agriculture.
- The grants are part of a broader effort by federal officials to boost career and educational opportunities for historically underrepresented students.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is sending $14 million toward Hispanic-serving institutions’ agricultural and human science programs.
The funding, part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) Education Grants Program, is part of a broader effort by federal officials to boost career and educational opportunities for historically underrepresented students.
USDA Deputy Secretary Jewel Bonaugh said in a release that the grants will boost HSIs’ workforce development efforts.
“In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month, USDA celebrates the achievements and contributions that our Hispanic-serving Institutions (HSIs) have made to American agriculture,” USDA Deputy Secretary Jewel Bonaugh said in the release. “They are our trusted partners in preparing the next generation of agriculture leaders that more fully represent the many diverse populations and voices in America.”
Hispanic and Latino students must make up at least 25% of the total student body at a school for an institution to earn the HSI designation from the U.S. Department of Education, BestColleges previously reported. According to Excelencia in Education, HSIs enroll 66% of Latino undergraduates.
— Jewel Bonaugh, USDA Deputy Secretary
Among the institutions that received grants is New Mexico State University, which received $999,786 for its project to create a partnership with California State University, Chico to provide boosted training opportunities and mentoring.
Other institutions highlighted in the USDA release include Northern Arizona University, which received funding for a project to train Hispanic leaders in forest management, and University of Puerto Rico - Carolina, which received funding for its efforts to train farm owners and restaurant chefs.
Roughly two dozen colleges and universities across the country have received funding as part of the grant program this year.
“At NIFA, we are honored to work with these vitally important partners, and Minority-serving Institutions as a whole, to advance scientific research, develop tomorrow’s leaders and cultivate the next generation of our agricultural workforce,” Acting NIFA Director Dr. Dionne Toombs said in the release.