Graduate Studies

The CULTIVAR Project

Dr. JoAnn Canales is the Principle Investigator on The CULTIVAR Project: Connecting Underrepresented Latinos To Integrate Values and Academic Resources, a grant award to recruit young Hispanic scholars to pursue a professional and or academic career in the food and agricultural sciences. Texas A&M University- Corpus Christi (TAMUCC) has partnered with the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE) and the USDA- National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to sponsor a Master's Thesis Award Program to be awarded at the annual AAHHE meeting in March as well as sponsor a Career Preparation Institute. The Cultivar Project is innovative in its synergistic approach to combining award programs, graduate fellows programs, mentoring programs, career preparation institutes, and internships. The program is intended to nurture 50 individuals, over the course of two years, from a graduate degree program to the doctoral and or workplace program with emphasis on preparing the professionals for their career.

The CULTIVAR (Connecting Underrepresented Latinos To Integrate Values and Academic Resources) project addresses the need to attract outstanding, underrepresented students and prepare graduates capable of enhancing the Nation's food and agricultural scientific and professional workforce. It will identify, select, and cultivate master's degree level students in food and agricultural sciences disciplines through an outstanding thesis award competition focused on USDA priority areas of Food Safety Climate Change, Sustainable Energy, Childhood Obesity and Global Food Hunger. Fifty fellows, including the thesis award winners, will participate in a Career Preparation Institute networking with senior faculty researchers and USDA agency representatives and create a leadership plan focused on developing human capital relevant to meeting the USDA labor force needs.

This project is supported by Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2012-38422—30816 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

The CULTIVAR Project Partners:

AAHHE-American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education   USDA-United States Department of Agriculture/NIFA-National Institute for Food and Agriculture       TAMUCC-Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
Outstanding Thesis Competition

Deadline for Submission: September 15, 2014

This competition is open to any U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident Hispanic who has completed a thesis that focuses on Food and the Agricultural Sciences, between December 2012 and August 1, 2014. Theses are eligible if they are in domains related to the USDA priority areas, including: Food Safety, Climate Change, Sustainable Energy, Childhood Obesity, and Global Food Security & Hunger.

The top three winners will be invited and sponsored to attend the 10th Annual AAHHE National Conference (March 11—14, 2015) at the Embassy Suites Dallas – Frisco Hotel Convention Center & Spa, Frisco, TX to present their theses and receive their award, as well as participate in the Career Preparation Institute.

The first place winner will receive an award of $3,000, the second place winner will receive $2,000, and the third place winner will receive $1,000. Selected individuals applying for this award will also be invited and sponsored to attend the 10th Annual AAHHE National Conference and participate in the 4th Annual Career Preparation Institute.

  pdf icon
Guidelines
pdf icon
Thesis Announcement
and Flyer
pdf icon
Competition
Cover Page

 


2014 AAHHE/USDA-NIFA/TAMUCC
Outstanding Thesis Award Recipients

Tatiana Márquez

Tatiana Márquez
1st Place Winner

Factors influencing the deployment of utility scale solar power in the United States

The University of Arizona



Lorraine Rodriguez-Bonilla

Lorraine Rodriguez-Bonilla
2nd Place Winner

Assessment of the genetic diversity of Puerto Rican sweet potato
(l pomoea batatas (L.) Lam.)


University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus


2013 AAHHE/USDA-NIFA/TAMUCC
Outstanding Thesis Award Recipients

Stephany Alvarez-Ventura

Stephany Alvarez-Ventura
1st Place Winner

Measuring Impacts of Neem Oil and Amitraz on Varroa Destructor and
Apis Mellifera in Different Agricultural Systems of South Florida


Florida International University



Rebbeca Duar

Rebbeca Duar
2nd Place Winner

Adaptation and Validation of Food Product Specific Analytical Methods for Monitoring Prebiotics Present in Different Types of Processed Food Matrices

University of Nebraska-Lincoln


2012 AAHHE/USDA-NIFA/TAMUCC
Outstanding Thesis Award Recipients

Xiomara Elias-Argote

Xiomara Elias-Argote
1st Place Winner

Effects of Milk Processing on the
Milk Fat Globule Membrane Constituents


California Polytechnic State University



Luz Eliana Pinilla

Luz Eliana Pinilla
2nd Place Winner

Utilization of Sorghum in El Salvador:
Grain, Flour, and End-Product Quality


Texas A&M University-College Station



Maria Isabel Quintero

Maria Isabel Quintero
3rd Place Winner

Adherence Inhibition of Cronobacter Sakazakii and Other Pathogens by Prebiotic Oligosaccharides, Plant Extracts, and Other Naturally Derived Molecules

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Career Preparation Institute

Deadline for Submission: September 15, 2014

Selection to participate in the institute is open to any U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident Hispanic graduate students enrolled in programs targeting the USDA priority areas, including; Food Safety: Climate Change, Sustainable Energy, Childhood Obesity, and Global Food Security & Hunger. Selected individuals applying for this award will also be invited and sponsored to attend the 10th Annual AAHHE National Conference.

The 4th annual Career Preparation Institute will be March 11-14, 2015 at the Embassy Suites Dallas - Frisco Hotel Convention Center & Spa, Frisco, TX. Topics include:

  • Employment opportunities and application processes in USDA agencies
  • Internship opportunities and application processes in USDA agencies
  • Current research to practice in USDA priority areas-Food Safety, Climate Change, Sustainable Energy, and Childhood Obesity
  • Effective presentation techniques to communicate science
  • Strengths identification and leadership plan development
  • Networking strategies and opportunities with USDA representatives and scholars in the food and agricultural sciences

 

  pdf icon
2015 Career
Preparation Flyer
pdf icon
2015 Career
Preparation Application

 

Please send the completed form to the College of Graduate Studies at Texas A&M - Corpus Christi or email Dr. JoAnn Canales at joann.canales@tamucc.edu

 

USDA Fellows

3rd Annual USDA Graduate Fellows Career Preparation Institute
2014 USDA Graduate Fellows


R. Corey DeLeon R. Corey DeLeon
2014 Chair
Texas State University
Stephany Alvarez-Ventura Stephany Alvarez-Ventura
2014 Co-Chair
Texas State University
 
Nicolas Lopez-Galvez Nicolas Lopez-Galvez
Discipline: Public Health
San Diego State University
Tatiana Márquez Tatiana Márquez
Discipline: Agriculture and Resource Economics
The University of Arizona
 
Tania D. Burgos Hernández Tania D. Burgos Hernández
Discipline: Agriculture and Resource Economics
University of Puerto Rico- Mayagüez Campus
Miles Medina Miles Medina
Discipline: Environmental Sciences
Florida International University
 
Elyssa Rae Garza Elyssa Rae Garza
Discipline: Biology
University of Texas-Pan American
Jonathan Otero-Ramos Jonathan Otero-Ramos
Discipline: Environmental Sciences
InterAmerican University of Puerto Rico, San Germán Campus
 
Sonia Rios Sonia Rios
Discipline: Plant Science
California State University, Fresno
Thelma Velez Thelma Velez
Discipline: Environmental Sciences
Florida International University
 
Lorraine Rodriguez-Bonilla Lorraine Rodriguez-Bonilla
Discipline: Biology
University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus
Vanessa Sanchez Vanessa Sanchez
Discipline: Environmental Studies/ Agroecology
Florida International University
 
Elizabeth Noelia Williams Elizabeth Noelia Williams
Discipline: Food Science
University of Maryland
Adriana V. Rodríguez-García Adriana V. Rodríguez-García
Discipline: Agronomy
North Dakota State University

 

2nd Annual USDA Graduate Fellows Career Preparation Institute
2013 USDA Graduate Fellows


Luz Eliana Pinilla Luz Eliana Pinilla
2013 Chair
Texas A&M University
xxx R. Corey DeLeon
2013 Co-Chair
Texas State University
 
NATALIA B. ALVAREZ NATALIA B. ALVAREZ
M.S. in Environmental Science
University of Puerto Rico
STEPHANY ALVAREZ-VENTURA STEPHANY ALVAREZ-VENTURA
M.S. in Biofuels
Florida International University
 
SHIREEN ATTARAN SHIREEN ATTARAN
M.S. in Biochemistry
University of California
ANGEL L. VEGA NEGRÓN ANGEL L. VEGA NEGRÓN
M.S. in Environmental Sciences
University of Puerto Rico
 
REBBECA M. DUAR REBBECA M. DUAR
M.S. in Food and Science Technology
University of Nebraska
ODALIZ FARÍA-MEDINA ODALIZ FARÍA-MEDINA
M.S. in Plant Pathology
University of Puerto Rico
 
AMANDA C. GARCIA AMANDA C. GARCIA
M.S. in Plant and Soil Sciences
Texas A&M University-Kingsville
JUAN M. GARCIA JUAN M. GARCIA
M.S. in Agricultural Education
Texas State University
 
JOHN HERNANDEZ JOHN HERNANDEZ
M.S. in Biology
Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
STEPHANIE C. LOPEZ STEPHANIE C. LOPEZ
M.S. in Range Science
New Mexico State University
 
DIANA MORALES DIANA MORALES
M.S. in Agricultural Education
Texas State University
MARTHA I. MOSQUEDA MARTHA I. MOSQUEDA
M.S. in Nutrition
C.C.T., University of Arizona
 
MARIELA POVEDA MARIELA POVEDA
M.S. in Food Science and Technology
California Polytechnic State University
MICMARIE RAMOS-RODRIGUEZ MICMARIE RAMOS-RODRIGUEZ
M.S. in Public Health
University of Puerto Rico
 
LORRAINE RODRIGUEZ-BONILLA LORRAINE RODRIGUEZ-BONILLA
M.S. in Biology
University of Puerto Rico
 

 

1st Annual USDA Graduate Fellows Career Preparation Institute
2012 USDA Graduate Fellows


Corey De Leon Corey De Leon
B.S. Psychology and Nutrition
M.S. Human Nutrition
Food Safety/Childhood Obesity
Texas State University
Diana Del Angel Diana Del Angel
B.S. Environmental Science
M.S. Environmental Science
Climate Change
Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
 
Juanita Escamilla Juanita Escamilla
B.S. Nutrition and Foods
M.S. Human Nutrition
Childhood Obesity
Texas State University
John Montoya John Montoya
B.S. Biology
M.S. Agricultural Education
Ph.D. Tropical Plant and Soil Sciences
Climate Change (ip)
University of Hawaii
 
Karla Gutierrez Karla Gutierrez
B.S. Industrial Engineering
M.S. Industrial Engineering
Ph.D. Environmental Sciences (ip)
Sustainable Energy
The University of Texas at El Paso
Luz Eliana Pinilla Luz Eliana Pinilla
B.S. Food Science and Technology
M.S. Cereal Quality
Ph.D. Agricultural International
Development Education (ip)
Sustainability/Climate Change
Texas A&M
 
Maria Isabel Quintero Maria Isabel Quintero
B.S. Agro-industrial Production Engineer
M.S. Food Science and Technology
Ph.D. Food Science and Technology (ip)
Food Safety
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Martha A. Ramirez Martha A. Ramirez
M.S. Animal Science
Texas A&M University- Kingsville
 
Mirna Calderon Mirna Calderon
B.S. Agronomy
M.S. Plant Science (ip)
Climate Change
Cal Poly Pomona
Olivia Moreno Olivia Moreno
B.S. Industrial Engineering
M.S. Industrial Engineering
Ph.D. Environmental Science and Engineering (ip)
Sustainable Energy
University of Texas at El Paso
 
Stefanie Ann Ramirez Stefanie Ann Ramirez
B.S. Management- Marketing, Management, Latin American Studies
M.S. Human Ecology
Ph.D. Apparel Design (ip)
Sustainable Energy
Louisiana State University
Xiomara Elias-Argote Xiomara Elias-Argote
B.S. Biochemistry
M.S. Agriculture
Food Safety
Cal Poly