Tuskegee University Office of Marketing, Public Relations and Communications
TUSKEGEE, Alabama (January 7, 2013) — Over the next five years, Tuskegee University students will be able to have stipends for a summer internship program that focuses on plant pathology. In collaboration with the lead institution, Iowa State University, Tuskegee has been awarded a grant for $699,492 by the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
Funds for the project proposal, “Transgenic Approaches in Managing Sudden Death Syndrome in Soybean,” will be used to provide the stipends for undergraduate students to participate in an eight-week program at Iowa State for training in plant pathology.
C.S. Prakash, a professor of plant molecular genetics at Tuskegee is the principal investigator for the project and Jacquelyn Jackson, a research assistant professor in molecular biology and genetics, also at Tuskegee, is the co-principal investigator.
“This grant will impact students in a great way. My life was really impacted by being able to go on internships,” Jackson said. “To be able to help another student experience what I did as an undergrad at Tuskegee is exciting for me.”
In addition to the internship, funds will also be used for Tuskegee to host a five-day intensive training workshop each year on campus to train K-12 teachers and high school students to enhance their understanding of plant diseases, their management, genetics and control. Also, the university will develop educational resource materials for training K-12 students and teachers.
“It’s important to study (plant pathology) because it helps us with learning about and instituting measures to ensure plant health. Therefore, it affects food security,” Jackson said.