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A group of college freshmen visited A&T recently to familiarize themselves with a program that eventually will lead to employment opportunities with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Thirty-two students from across the nation visited the campus when the School of Agriculture hosted the annual USDA/1890 National Scholars' Orientation. Each students has enrolled at one of the 17 1890 land-grant institutions as a USDA 1890 scholar.``The National Scholars Program gives qualified students a unique educational opportunity,' says J. C. Brown, the USDA liaison officer for A&T's School of Agriculture. Brown is the main campus contact for A&T's 10 USDA scholars.

``The program not only provides scholarship money for education, it also gives students an opportunity to work closely with a agency while developing their professional skills,' he said.

Through the program, USDA provides students full tuition, fees, books, use of a personal computer, software, employment, and employee benefits for the four years they are pursuing a bachelor's degree. The institutions provide the scholarship recipients with room and board for each year.

Brown said the intent of the orientation was to bring together students who are new to the program to learn about the 1890 land-grant system and its relationship with USDA agencies. To do this, the orientation included presentations by representatives from each of the 1890 institutions and from each USDA agency.


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