The USDA/1890 National Scholar 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. Scholarship recipients 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 126 1890 scholarships in Fiscal Year 2022, the most in one year since the program began in 1992.
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
USDA/1890 National Scholars are required to study one of the following disciplines:
- Agricultural Business/Management
- Agricultural Economics
- Agricultural Engineering/Mechanics
- Agricultural Production and Technology
- Agronomy or Crop Science
- Animal Sciences
- Food Sciences/Technology
- Forestry and Related Sciences
- Home Economics/Nutrition
- 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 scholarship may be renewed each year, contingent upon satisfactory academic performance and normal progress toward a bachelor's degree.
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 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 a signed application (original signature only)
- 21 ACT, 1080 SAT scores
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 USDA/1890s National Scholars Program 2023 application period has been extended through April 15, 2023.
Please consult the applicant guidebook for detailed instructions on how to create an account and apply.
USDA 1890 National Scholars Application Applicant Guide (PDF, 992 KB)
To view the 2023 E-application, please open the following link: 2023 E-application for the 1890 National Scholars Program
For any questions regarding the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program, please contact:
Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement
1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Stop 0601
Washington, DC 20250
Telephone Number: (202) 720-6350