ITHACA — Cornell University has been awarded $281,475 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for fellowships for students studying agriculture.

On Thursday, Senator Charles Schumer announced in a press release that the federal funding will go to Cornell students pursuing research and experimental learning opportunities focused on food, agriculture, natural resources and human sciences.

The funds were allocated through the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduate (REEU) Fellowships program.

Awards totaling more than $5 million were announced Wednesday by USDA to 18 universities, including Cornell. The fellowships program is designed to help undergraduate students enter the agricultural workforce.

“At Cornell, our history of relentless scientific discovery has made animal agriculture more productive and sustainable,” Kathryn Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch dean of the Cornell University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, said in a news release. “This grant continues that legacy as we train the next generation of thought leaders dedicated to meet the rising global demand for food from animal products.”

In a news release, Schumer said this funding will “increase students’ opportunities to gain critical new skills and ensure that Cornell remains a world-class center for agricultural education, research and development. These programs are vital to growing and strengthening our agricultural sector.”

Kelsey O'Connor is the managing editor for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at and follow her on Twitter @bykelseyoconnor.