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Funding for research in wheat, rice breeding

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 Texas AgriLife Research, an agency of the Texas A&M University System, and Monsanto Company have announced the call for applications for students interested in pursuing research in wheat or rice plant breeding.

Applications for Monsanto's Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program (MBBISP) are being accepted now through February 1, 2013. Funds are available for scholars pursuing a doctorate in wheat or rice plant breeding.  In addition to research funding, scholars will receive access to advanced breeding techniques and technology and participate in field experience in a developing country for one season.

The program recognizes the importance of rice and wheat as key staple crops in addressing global hunger. It honors the accomplishments of poineers in plant breeding and research in rice and wheat, by providing funding support to develop the next generation of scientific leaders.

In total, MBBISP has supported 52 students from 21 different countries since its formation in 2009. India tops the MBBISP list with four out of 14 global scholars in 2012 and also tops overall list with 14 scholars from 2009 till date. This application period marks the program's fifth year, with a total of $10 million of support by Monsanto.

Christopher Samuel, Director – Sustainability, CSR & Public Affairs, Monsanto India said, “We believe that improving ag improves lives. Meeting the growing food demand can be achieved through science and innovation, which is possible only by providing opportunity and education. This program is aimed at developing highly trained rice and wheat breeders who show dedication and promise as future leaders in the field of agriculture. Improving lives by enabling farmers to produce more and conserve more, that’s our focus for sustainable agriculture.”

Successful applicants will focus research on a critical constraint affecting rice or wheat production. Students can complete their PhD program at any university that grants a PhD in rice or wheat breeding. Students interested in applying can find more details at

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