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Scholars join Noble Research Institute for summer of learning

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Posted Jul. 15, 2016

ARDMORE, Okla. Each summer, the Noble Research Institute provides more than a dozen college students with a life-changing experience, not an internship.

The Lloyd Noble Scholars in Agriculture and the Noble Summer Research Scholars in Plant Science programs provide elite college students from across the United States with an opportunity to work side-by-side with Noble Research Institute staff in Ardmore, Oklahoma.

The Lloyd Noble Scholars program offers students the opportunity to work alongside agricultural professionals in six core areas of expertise: animal science and livestock management, agricultural economics, horticulture, range and pasture management, soils and crops, and wildlife and fisheries. Noble Summer Research Scholars conduct plant science research with mentor scientists in the laboratories and greenhouse facilities of the Noble Research Institute.

"These scholar programs offer a tremendous learning experience," said Bill Buckner, president and CEO of the Noble Research Institute. "The students are given the rare opportunity to work in a real-world setting; learn from some of the best minds in their selected fields; and make contributions that can actually impact the scientific community, agricultural producers and even consumers."

Students selected for either program must demonstrate academic merit, and they must complete a rigorous application and interview process. "When you see these students on our campus, you know they are some of the best this generation has to offer," Buckner said.

The 2016 Lloyd Noble Scholars in Agriculture are:

  • Abby Biedenbach, University of Idaho, agricultural economics, animal science-dairy production and mathematics
  • Christopher Gillespie, Michigan State University, crop and soil sciences, agronomic science
  • Bray Haven, Oklahoma State University, agricultural business
  • Hammons Hepner, Oklahoma State University, agricultural economics and finance
  • Zach Johnson, Texas A&M University, wildlife ecology and conservation
  • Kayla Mercer, University of Florida, animal science
  • Elizabeth Palmer, Pennsylvania State University, animal science
  • Alec Ritzell, Sul Ross University, natural resources management
  • Callie Zoeller, Oklahoma State University, plant and soil science

The 2016 Noble Summer Research Scholars in Plant Science are:

  • Christina Chiu, Clemson University, plant and environmental sciences
  • Thilani Jayakody, Michigan State University, plant biology/genomics, molecular genetics
  • Sarah Oliver, Oklahoma State University, biochemistry
  • Michael Passalacqua, Rice University, biological sciences
  • Tara Watkins, Western Kentucky University, biochemistry and agriculture

For more information about the Lloyd Noble Scholars in Agriculture program, visit noble.org/noble-scholar or contact Amy Hays at 580-224-6521. For more information about the Noble Summer Research Scholars in Plant Science program, visit noble.org/summer-scholar or contact Frank Hardin at 580-224-6215.

Noble Research Institute, LLC (www.noble.org) is an independent nonprofit agricultural research organization dedicated to delivering solutions to great agricultural challenges. Headquartered in Ardmore, Oklahoma, the Noble Research Institute conducts fundamental, translational and applied research; offers no-cost consultation and education to farmers, ranchers and land managers; operates seven research and demonstration farms; and educates students of all ages about science and agriculture. The Noble Research Institute was founded by Lloyd Noble, an Oklahoma oilman and philanthropist, in 1945 as The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation to advance agriculture and land stewardship.

For media inquiries concerning the Noble Research Institute, please contact:
J. Adam Calaway, Director of Communications and Public Relations
580-224-6209 | 580-224-6208 fax

Robyn Peterson, Public Relations Coordinator

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