Illinois Central College Agricultural Program received a $10,000 donation from Bayer CropScience, whose North American headquarters is in Research Triangle Park, N.C.
The grant was presented at the 2015 Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Ill., and is part of the corporation's ongoing support of organizations dedicated to agricultural education and workforce development. A Bayer CropScience employee and member of the College's Ag Advisory Committee recommended ICC for consideration for the donation.
"Bayer knows that, to be successful in the future, we need bright young minds to bring their talents, energy, enthusiasm, and scientific knowledge to bear against the challenges facing agriculture and the world," said Jim Blome, president and CEO, Bayer CropScience LP. "We recognize the value of ICC and other community colleges bring to the industry, and we want to support them as they are expanding their reach."
The agricultural curriculum at ICC includes diverse areas of study, including an Associate in Science degree, which is an agriculture transfer program; an Associate in Applied Science degree, with options in General Agriculture Business Management, Agronomy, Animal Sciences, or Sales and Service; and one-year certificate program options in Production Agriculture and Precision Agriculture.
"ICC is sincerely grateful to Bayer for this generous donation," said Agricultural Program Coordinator and Professor Grant Grebner. "Our mission is to prepare students to succeed as they enter the workforce for the many progressive agricultural employers in central Illinois and the broader Midwest, and this donation will advance that mission."
ICC's Agricultural Program enrollment is currently at an all-time high, an indicator Grebner sees as a testament to the strength of the program, the industry and the potential employment outlook for students.