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NIFA Programs Supporting 1890 Institutions, Their Faculty and Students

Nifa Authors
Margaret Lawrence, Writer-Editor

USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is committed to providing the broadest support possible to the 1890 Land-grant Colleges and Universities, their faculty and their students. In Fiscal 2022, NIFA oversaw $212.5 million in competitive and capacity grants awarded to its 1890 Land-grant University partners. This funding included $26 million in capacity building grants, $20 million in student scholarships, and $10 million to fund 1890 Centers of Excellence.

NIFA supports 1890 faculty and students as well their institutions in a variety of ways that include centers of excellence, programs that help develop the nation’s future leaders in science and agriculture, cultivate the next generation of agriculturalists, scholarship awards and more. 

Centers of Excellence 

In FY 2022, NIFA has invested $14 million in Centers of Excellence at 1890 Institutions, funding six collaborative research centers focused on subjects ranging from rural prosperity and climate-smart technology to food security, health, and nutrition. This number includes an additional $4 million to Centers of Excellence at Tuskegee University and Southern University for Meat & Poultry Processing Workforce Development from the American Rescue Plan Act.  

These investments will strengthen efforts at various 1890s in developing research, workforce development and Extension programs that support underserved producers and the communities you serve.  

The most recent expansion in this area is a $2 million investment to establish an Agriculture Business Innovation Center at North Carolina A&T State University.  This new innovation center is a perfect complement to the NIFA-funded 1890 Center of Excellence for Student Success and Workforce Development already housed at NC A&T. NIFA believes these centers working together will deliver a boost to the next generation of agricultural professionals and will support growth, profitability and success of existing businesses to increase employment opportunities in the field.  

From Learning to Leading: Cultivating the Next Generation of Diverse Food and Agriculture Professionals Program 

The primary goal of the From Learning to Leading: Cultivating the Next Generation of Diverse Food and Agriculture Professionals Program (or NextGen) is to enable 1890 and 1994 institutions, Alaska Native-serving institutions and Native Hawaiian-serving institutions, Hispanic-serving institutions and insular area institutions to build and sustain the next generation of agriculture and ag-related scientists and leaders. This effort will work primarily through student scholarship support, paid internships, fellowships and job opportunity matching, and also facilitating opportunities to learn the pathways leading to training and employment in the federal sector.   

Scholarships for Students at 1890 Institutions (1890 Scholarships) 

The 1890 Scholarships Program provided scholarships to support recruiting, engaging, retaining, mentoring, and training of undergraduate students at the 1890s, resulting in baccalaureate degrees in the food and agricultural sciences and related fields.   

The scholarships are intended to encourage outstanding students to pursue and complete degrees in the food and agricultural sciences and related fields that would lead to a highly skilled food and agricultural systems workforce.   

1890 Institution Teaching, Research, and Extension Capacity Building Grants Program 

This program supports 1890 Land-grants as they build and strengthen research, teaching and Extension at their institutions. It fosters improved capacity to advance fundamental sciences as well as translational research and development in support of agriculture.  Learn more about capacity funding. 

1890 Facilities Grants Program 

The 1890 Facilities Grant Program is intended for the acquisition and improvement of agricultural and food sciences facilities and equipment, including libraries. Up-to-date and continually improving facilities are vital elements in the development of human capital in the food, agricultural, and human sciences. 

Evans-Allen Research Program 

The Evans-Allen Act of 1977 was approved by Congress to provide capacity funding for food and agricultural research at the 1890 Land-grants in a manner like that provided to the 1862 Land-grants under the Hatch Act of 1887. Research conducted under the Evans-Allen Program has led to scientific breakthroughs benefiting numerous local communities served by the 1890 universities across the Southern region and the nation as a whole. 

1890 Extension Formula Grants 

This capacity grant funding program supports agricultural and forestry Extension activities at 1890 Land-grant Universities. In particular, it supports practical, research-based educational opportunities that respond to the changing needs of these clients. Learn more about this program here. 


Farm Bill Priority Areas
Plant health, production, and products
Agriculture systems and technology
Animal health and production and animal products
Bioenergy, natural resources, and environment
Food Safety, Nutrition, and Health
Agriculture economics and rural communities

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