Skip to main content

USDA 1890 National Scholars Program

Current News

USDA is accepting applications for the 2024 USDA 1890 National Scholars Program from December 15 through March 1, 2024!

View updated instructions (PDF, 876 KB) for creating a user account and submit your application.

View Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 152 KB) regarding technical issues sometimes encountered when filling out the application.

The USDA 1890 National Scholars Program is aimed at bolstering educational and career opportunities for students from rural or underserved communities around the country. It was established in 1992 as part of the partnership between USDA and the 1890 land-grant universities.

USDA’s Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement (OPPE) manages the 1890 National Scholars Program, which is aimed at increasing the number of students from rural and underserved communities who study food, agriculture, natural resource and other related sciences. The scholarship provides recipients with full tuition, fees, books, room and board. Scholars attend one of the 1890 land-grant universities and pursue degrees in agriculture, food, natural resource sciences, or related academic disciplines. The scholarship may also include work experience at USDA. The program is a crucial part of USDA’s Next Generation efforts.

USDA awarded 100 1890 scholarships in Fiscal Year 2023.

These are the (19) 1890 universities:

  • Alabama A&M University
  • Alcorn State University, Mississippi
  • Central State University, Ohio
  • Delaware State University
  • Florida A&M University
  • Fort Valley State University, Georgia
  • Kentucky State University
  • Langston University, Oklahoma
  • Lincoln University, Missouri
  • North Carolina A&T State University
  • Prairie View A&M University, Texas
  • South Carolina State University
  • Southern University, Louisiana
  • Tennessee State University
  • Tuskegee University, Alabama
  • University of Arkansas Pine Bluff
  • University of Maryland Eastern Shore
  • Virginia State University
  • West Virginia State University

Study Disciplines

USDA 1890 National Scholars are required to study one of the following disciplines:

  • Agriculture
  • Agricultural Business/Management
  • Agricultural Economics
  • Agricultural Engineering/Mechanics
  • Agricultural Production and Technology
  • Agronomy or Crop Science
  • Animal Sciences
  • Botany
  • Food Sciences/Technology
  • Forestry and Related Sciences
  • Home Economics/Nutrition
  • Horticulture
  • Natural Resources Management
  • Soil Conservation/Soil Science
  • Farm and Range Management
  • Other related disciplines, (e.g. non-medical biological sciences, pre-veterinary medicine, computer science)

The Award

The scholarship may be renewed each year, contingent upon satisfactory academic performance and normal progress toward a bachelor's degree.

General Eligibility

To be eligible for the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program scholarship, a student must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Have a minimum of 21 ACT, 1080 SAT scores
  • Have been accepted for admission or currently attending one of the nineteen 1890 Historically Black Land-Grant Universities.
  • Study agriculture, food, natural resource sciences, or other related academic disciplines
  • Demonstrate leadership and community service
  • Submit an official transcript with the school seal and an authorized official's signature
  • Submit at least 2 letters of reference
  • Submit completed application

Who Should Apply

The USDA 1890 National Scholars Program is open to high school seniors entering their freshman year of college, and rising college sophomores and juniors.

The applications for the 2024 school year will be accepted from December 15, 2023 through March 1, 2024. Click to view instructions for creating a user account (PDF, 876 KB) and submit your application.

Don’t miss the next scholarship application deadline!

Sign up to receive updates on the next 1890 National Scholars Program application opening, along with information about other higher education opportunities for minority students.

For any questions regarding the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program, please contact:

Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement
USDA 1890 Programs
1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Stop 0601
Washington, DC 20250
Telephone Number: (202) 720-6350
Email: 1890init@usda.gov or partnerships@usda.gov

Sign up for OPPE updates