Monsanto’s Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program Fellowship Takes Minkenberg to Iowa
Posted: November 6, 2015
Bastian Minkenberg, Plant Biology Ph.D. candidate in Dr. Yinong Yang's lab and 2015 recipient of the prestigious Monsanto’s Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program (MBBISP) fellowship, traveled last month to Des Moines, Iowa, as part of MBBISP. On October 10–13, 2015, he attended the Leadership Skill Course and visited Monsanto’s branch in Ankeny, just north of Des Moines. Minkenberg was present at the World Food Prize Ceremony and the Borlaug Dialogue Symposium on October 14–16 and participated in corresponding activities. The ceremony recognized the 2015 World Food Prize Laureate Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, internationally renowned founder and chairperson of BRAC (formerly known as Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee). The World Food Prize was established in 1986 and annually honors individuals who have significantly improved the quality, quantity, or availability of food in the world.
MBBISP’s purpose is to fund and aid students to be future leaders in the field of rice and wheat breeding. This distinguished program provides Minkenberg with a two-year package (August 2015–August 2017) of full support for his dissertation work. The goal of his specific study is to accelerate and improve rice breeding with novel genome editing techniques. In 2016 Minkenberg plans to travel to Wuhan, China, to experience rice breeding in the field and learn about the challenges and needs of Chinese farmers.