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Source: Monsanto Company news release

Texas AgriLife Research, an agency of the Texas A&M University System, and Monsanto Company announce the call for applications for students interested in pursuing research in wheat or rice plant breeding.

Applications for Monsanto's Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program (MBBISP) are being accepted now through February 1, 2013. Funds are available for scholars pursuing a doctorate in wheat or rice plant breeding. Students interested in applying can find more details at In addition to research funding, scholars will receive access to advanced breeding techniques and technology and participate in field experience in a developing country for one season.

"Every year, the quality of the entries exceeds our expectations," said program director Ed Runge, Ph.D., Texas A&M University. "It is thrilling to see students all over the world interested in improving breeding efforts in rice and wheat."

The program recognizes the importance of rice and wheat as key staple crops in addressing global hunger. It honors the accomplishments of Henry Beachell, Ph.D., and Norman Borlaug, Ph.D., who pioneered plant breeding and research in rice and wheat, respectively, by providing funding support to develop the next generation of scientific leaders.

In total, MBBISP has supported 52 students from 21 different countries since its formation in 2009. This application period marks the program's fifth year, with a total of $10 million of support by Monsanto.

"The rapidly increasing world population and the growing need for food highlights the need for scientific research in these two important crops," said Ted Crosbie, vice president with Monsanto Company and long-time plant breeder. "Monsanto is proud to fund this program, ensuring the next generation of innovative rice and wheat breeders will have the tools and resources to assist in feeding the world."

Successful applicants will focus research on a critical constraint affecting rice or wheat production. Students can complete their Ph.D. program at any university that grants a Ph.D. in rice or wheat breeding.

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