The National Corn Growers Association and BASF Corp. are helping to combat the rising cost of higher education and help future farmers and current producers looking to sharpen their skills in the classroom.

The deadline for applying for the second year of NCGA’s Academic Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship is Jan. 23. Five $1,000 scholarships are available.

Last year’s winners included four undergraduates and one graduate student who are studying fields like agribusiness and applied economics, animal sciences and agricultural engineering at schools across the Corn Belt and beyond.

NCGA received 80 applications from 63 different agriculture programs across the country: land grant and private universities, community college and four-year programs. Over 200 schools were contacted and 65,000 growers were mailed about the scholarship. Similar efforts are being undertaken this year.

“Because of this scholarship, I will be able to continue my education,” said winner James Seitzer of St. Paul, Minn. “Thank you for supporting students like me who are studying agriculture and plan to enter the agriculture industry upon graduation.”

Applicants must be entering at least their second undergraduate year or any year of graduate study in an agriculture-related field.

Applicants must be an NCGA member or the son or daughter of a member. New members may apply for the scholarship at the same time they apply for NCGA membership.

For more information, go to http://www.ncga.com/node/523.