Grants and Opportunities

National Needs Fellowship

  National Needs Graduate Fellowship (PDF)

The University of California, Davis received funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) for a National Needs Graduate Fellowship (NNF) grant to fully support two Masters-level and two Doctoral-level Graduate Research Assistantships. The four positions are available in Fall 2016 through a joint collaboration of the Plant Breeding Center and the Horticulture and Agronomy Graduate Group. Candidates for NNF funding will be chosen from the entire pool of applicants to the Horticulture and Agronomy Graduate Group at UC Davis, with a focus on historically underrepresented minorities.

The UC Davis curriculum equips students with skills and knowledge in both classical and field-based plant breeding, and molecular and genomics technology in plant breeding. Fellows will benefit from interdisciplinary training at UC Davis, contact with different industry professionals in the vicinity of the university, and opportunities for participation in professional meetings.

Doctoral-level grant recicipients are required to complete a 3-month internship with a seed company. All four recipients are required to develop a study abroad program for six months, also funded by the project. Expected outcomes include publication of the research in peer- reviewed journals, presentations at local and national meetings, development of educational materials, and participation in extension and educational programs. Recipients must be citizens or nationals of the United States of America.

To apply, visit:
For more information:

The NNF Grant Fellowship positions have currently been filled. Any new opportunities will be posted to this page.

Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative

The USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture recently announced an Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) grant for organic plant breeding at UC Davis.

The Student Collaborative Organic Plant Breeding Education (SCOPE) project, developed by the Plant Breeding Center and the Student Farm, will create an experiential learning-based public plant breeding pipeline for organic cultivar development. It will focus on graduate student field training in plant breeding by means of developing cultivars for organic farming systems. Graduate students will work with the Organic Seed Alliance to meet with organic producers and organic seed companies to discuss breeding challenges.

Project teams are in the beginning stages of development, and an initial meeting with organic growers took place on November 13, 2015.

The SCOPE Project offers internship credits for undergraduate students. To join the project, contact:

Download the Internship Approval Form here.

Visit the SCOPE website for more details.