WASHINGTON D.C. (February 26, 2020) – Veterinarians trained in medicine, animal science and public health can solve critical global livestock production challenges; however, few opportunities exist for students to pursue this research. For the second year, the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) and the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) seek nominations for the Veterinary Student Research Fellowships . This fellowship, also known as the FFAR Vet Fellows program, is a unique opportunity for veterinary students to pursue research related to animal health, global food security and sustainable agriculture.
Available funding opportunities for veterinary scientists focus on biomedical research, which leaves new challenges in animal agriculture unaddressed. Shifts in food animal production practices, climate, rural community populations and consumer preferences create challenges for livestock producers at home and abroad. Research is critical to understanding these challenges and helping producers manage them. FFAR established the Vet Fellows program to encourage veterinary scientists to improve animal health and welfare, explore the complexities of animal production and enhance human health.
“Veterinarians with expertise in animal science and public health are vital to addressing challenges livestock producers currently face and transforming sustainable livestock production in the future,” said FFAR’s Executive Director Dr. Sally Rockey. “The Vet Fellows program is one of the only programs that allows veterinary students to tackle cutting-edge research at the intersection of global food security and sustainable animal production. The FFAR Vet Fellows program, and the investment from AAVMC, is essential to developing the scientific workforce we need today and well into the future.”
The three-month summer fellowship stipend is awarded to a maximum of 10 students annually to conduct research at the intersection of global food security and sustainable animal production with a mentor. The program is open to students currently enrolled in a DVM or VMD degree program, including those in combined degree programs. The fellowship culminates with student presentations at the annual National Veterinary Scholars Symposium in early August.
The deadline to submit nominations is May 6, 2020. Only one student per institution is eligible for nomination. Specific information about nominations, eligibility and the application process can be found on the FFAR Vet Fellows website.
“The world faces profound challenges in food production and food security, and we’re very excited to work with FFAR in helping to address these problems,” said AAVMC CEO Dr. Andrew T. Maccabe. “The research experiences provided for our students through this program are creating important scientific knowledge, but moreover, they are helping these emerging scientists understand the need and the value of pursuing careers in this area.”
Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research
The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization originally established by bipartisan Congressional support in the 2014 Farm Bill, builds unique partnerships to support innovative and actionable science addressing today's food and agriculture challenges. FFAR leverages public and private resources to increase the scientific and technological research, innovation, and partnerships critical to enhancing sustainable production of nutritious food for a growing global population. The FFAR Board of Directors is chaired by Mississippi State University President Mark Keenum, Ph.D., and includes ex officio representation from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and National Science Foundation.
ABOUT THE AAVMC
The member institutions of the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) promote and protect the health and wellbeing of people, animals and the environment by advancing the profession of veterinary medicine and preparing new generations of veterinarians to meet the evolving needs of a changing world. Founded in 1966, the AAVMC member institutions include 53 Council on Education (COE) accredited veterinary medical colleges and schools in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand and 23 provisional and collaborating members, departments of veterinary science and departments of comparative medicine in the U.S.