Two gifts from Corteva Agriscience and a gift from Strauss Veal Feeds and Midwest Poultry Services are producing big changes for Huntington University’s agriculture program. Considered as a package, the gifts will provide scholarship support for students attending Huntington University in agriculture-related studies, help improve the lab experience for students and finalize plans for an animal sciences study center with room for animals and hands-on learning.
“It was an exciting year of growth for us,” says Nate Perry, coordinator of ag operations and external relations at Huntington University, Huntington, Ind. “Support from industry is helping us offer more experiences and opportunities for our ag students.”
Besides the gifts, the ag program also raised its first crop on land owned by the university this year, Perry notes. This was a chance to provide hands-on learning experiences for students.
Here is a closer look at the three major donations Huntington University’s agriculture program received in 2019:
Endowed scholarships. Working through Dairyland Seed, one of its regional seed brands, Corteva Agriscience donated $50,000 for two named endowed scholarships for students. These scholarships will begin with the 2020-21 school year and will continue into the future, Perry says.
The two scholarships will be open to full-time Huntington University students pursuing a degree in any ag-related field of study. Students must have at least a 2.8 GPA and participate and display leadership skills in at least one extracurricular university organization.
With this gift, program partners have now provided more than $100,000 for both annual and endowed scholarships for ag students since the university opened its Department of Agriculture in 2015.
Support for labs and lectures. Corteva Agriscience and Dairyland Seed made a separate $50,000 donation to enhance agricultural studies at Huntington University. This grant helped purchase new equipment for labs used by ag students.
“This gift from Corteva greatly impacts the operations of the agricultural studies program,” Perry says. “These funds will be used to enhance the research opportunities for the students in the labs on a day-to-day basis.”
Besides providing much-needed lab equipment, this gift supports an ongoing lecture series that will allow the university to bring top-notch speakers from around the country to engage students and the entire community in discussions related to important ag topics. Corteva will be named as lead sponsor for the ag lecture series.
Animal sciences center. Just recently, Huntington University firmed up plans for the Don Strauss Animal Science Education Center. Perry says it’s named for the late Don Strauss, North Manchester, founder of Strauss Veal Feeds and Midwest Poultry Services. The companies he founded made the lead gift for this new education center.
“It will provide an outstanding opportunity for our students to expand their knowledge of animals as it relates to their key role in the agricultural sector,” Perry says.
The center will feature a 10,000-square-foot structure that will house large, flexible pen space for a variety of animals, as well as classroom space.
Perry says this gift and the ability to move forward with the animal sciences center will have special value for students who want to study livestock.