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Scholarships for agriculture and closely related majors

scholarshipsCollege-bound San Diego County high school and college students planning to pursue a career in agriculture or a closely related field should start formulating their game plan now to take advantage of the many scholarship programs available. Here are a handful of popular scholarship programs offered to ag-minded students with contact information to get your student started in the right direction:

San Diego County Farm Bureau

Scholarship amount: Ranges from $500 to $4,000
Application deadline: April 9, 2012
Contact: (760) 745-3023

Application PDF

Application .docx

The Farm Bureau of San Diego County, through the generosity of San Diego County farmers, ranchers, and nursery operators has awarded scholarships to deserving students since the program's inception in 1999.  A total of $190,150 has been awarded to 208 students in the past nine years.  

Each year the San Diego County Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee selects several students who are enrolled or entering college as scholarship recipients.  Students entering or attending a two-year or four-year college or university are eligible.  Applicants must be pursuing a course of study in agriculture or a closely related field, and they must have a permanent residence in San Diego County.  Membership in the Farm Bureau is not required.  Past scholarship award amounts have ranged from $500 to $4000. Funds awarded in 2013 must be applied to the 2013-2014 academic year.

The primary criteria for an SDCFB scholarship include academic achievement, career goals and a commitment to study agriculture. Secondary criteria include extracurricular activities, financial need and written expression. Applications must include transcripts as well as recommendations from a teacher and a current or former employer or community service organization. Applicants must be permanent residents of San Diego County and entering or attending a two- or four-year college or university. Applications and recommendation forms are available at the Farm Bureau office and on the Farm Bureau Web site at www.sdfarmbureau.org.

California Farm Bureau Federation

Scholarship amount: Ranges from $1,500 to $2,750
Application deadline:
Contact: Darlene Licciardo at (916) 561-5500

Web site: http://cfbf.com

Recipients are selected based on academic achievement, career goals, extracurricular activities, determination and demonstration of leadership skills. Applicants must be Farm Bureau membership is not required. Detailed information and applications are available at online

FFA Scholarships

Scholarship amount:
Application postmarked by:
Email : scholarships@ffa.org

4H Scholarships for Higher Education

Scholarship Amounts: $500 - $1000
Application postmarked by:

The California 4-H Youth Development Program is committed to promoting higher education, in part through offering financial assistance in the form of scholarships. Statewide scholarships are available, with help from donors, for graduating high school and college-attending students. Candidates were 4-H members in high school, and may now apply for funds to cover educational expenses such as tuition, books, room and board, and other educational expenses.

California Strawberry Commission

Scholarship amount: Ranges from $400 and can be renewed annually. Amount based on merit.
Ap0plication Deadline:
Contact: Dyann Meschi at (831)724-1301 or email dmeschi@calstrawberry.org

California Strawberry Scholarships are available for full-time enrollment at a college, university, community college, or accredited trade school.

Funding is available for graduating high school seniors and students already attending college, including advanced degrees (master’s or doctorate degrees), or professional certification (teaching credential, technical programs, etc.).

J.A. and Flossie Mae Smith Scholarship

The J.A. and Flossie Mae Smith Scholarship is open to:

  • Graduating high school seniors, current college and university students, or adult re-entry students who will attend an accredited four-year college or university, two-year community college, graduate school, or licensed trade/vocational school in the United States.
  • Will or are currently pursuing a degree in Agriculture.
  • Have a minimum 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale (high school GPAs are unweighted).
  • Will attend school full-time.
  • Have a commitment to serving their community as demonstrated through community service, work experience and/or extra-curricular activities.
  • Have a demonstrated financial need.

More information on this scholarship and the other scholarships offered by the San Diego Foundation can be found on the San Diego Foundation's website through the following link (which has been shortened for convenience): www./tinyurl.com/7xpr3qc This link also includes information about the common scholarship application and important dates -- February 9, 2012 is the deadline to register as a new user on the Foundation's online application database, and February 13, 2012 is the deadline for all scholarship applications.

San Diego Flower & Plant Association

Scholarship amount: Variable
Application deadline:
Contact: Jan Berry (760) 431-2572 or email info@flowerandplant.org
Website: www.flowerandplant.org.

Students who are permanent San Diego County residents and specializing in horticulture at accredited two or four-year schools are eligible. Applications are online from Jan Berry at the San Diego Flower & Plant Association.

Cal Poly

Applicants must visit the Cal Poly Financial Aid Web Page where all the Cal Poly scholarships are listed and an online application form is available.

Joseph Shinoda Memorial Scholarship

Scholarship amount: Varies
Application deadline:
Contact/Web site: www.shinodascholarship.org

Eligible applicants are undergraduate students enrolled in an accredited four-year college or university in the U.S. who are majoring in a degree program specializing in some phase of floriculture and intend to work in some phase of commercial floriculture in the United States after graduation. Since specialization might not occur until later in four-year schools, preferences will be given to upper division applicants. Visit www.shinodascholarship.org to obtain complete application information and download the scholarship application.

Don Diego Scholarship

Scholarship amount: $5,000 each
Application deadline:
Contact: Chana Mannen at (858) 858-4210
Email: cmannen@sdfair.com
Web site: Don Diego Scholarship Information

The Don Diego Fund provides scholarships for outstanding high school seniors who participate in the San Diego County Fair. In 2010, The Don Diego Fund will award four $5,000 scholarships.  One scholarship will be awarded in each of the following categories: 1) 4-H student; 2) Future Farmers of America (FFA) student; 3) student employee at the Fair, Racetrack or Fairgrounds; and 4) student exhibitor at the Fair. Applicants are eligible for one scholarship category.  Applications and complete eligibility information are available at the Web site above.

Cuyamaca College Botanical Society

Scholarship amount: Variable
Application deadline:
Contact:Tita Heimpel, Dept. of Ornamental Horticulture (619) 660-4262
Application available online
Website: Cuyamaca College Botanical Society

Each year the Cuyamaca College Botanical Society awards scholarships to outstanding horticulture students. These scholarships are funded by activities and functions sponsored by the Society, such as the Sustainable Urban Landscape Conference and The Aggie Open Golf Tournament.  Funding support also comes from donations by garden clubs, professional organizations, industry, alumni, and individuals. Scholarships are available for students majoring in any of the seven horticultural programs at Cuyamaca.

Perennial Plant Association

Scholarship amount: $1,000 each
Application deadline:
Web site: www.perennialplant.org
For more infomation call: 614-771-8431

Application Available Online

The Perennial Plant Association offers five scholarships to college students studying horticulture or a related subject area. Students enrolled in two or four year programs are eligible to apply. Each scholarship recipient will receive $1000 and complimentary registration for all lectures and tours at the 2012 Perennial Plant Symposium in Boston, Massachusetts, July 8-10. The completed application should be mailed to the PPA office by March 2, 2012.

Resource Conservation District of Greater San Diego County Conservation Scholarship

Amount: Two scholarships of $1000
Contact: Krista Mendelsohn, (619) 562-0096, info@rcdsandiego.org

RCD offers $1000 scholarships to graduating high school seniors who would like to pursue a career in agriculture or the conservation of natural resources. This scholarship is reserved only for students residing in or attending school within the RCD of Greater San Diego County’s service area.