CHAMPAIGN, Ill., March 31, 2010 – DuPont announced a $200,000 grant to a University of Illinois initiative between the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) and the College of Media designed to address the growing need for effective communications in the fast-changing world of agriculture, food, feed, fiber, bio-energy and rural development.
The grant, from DuPont businesses Pioneer Hi-Bred and Crop Protection, will be paid based on the university meeting milestones in its $2 million goal for the effort.
“Agriculture is undergoing incredible change at the same time dynamic new media is redefining the field of communications,” said Paul E. Schickler, president – Pioneer Hi-Bred. “Additional focus and understanding at the intersection of those two trends should bring incredible benefits to farmers and consumers and others throughout the value chain.”
The university plans to enhance its joint agricultural communications program with a first-of-its kind endowed chair in agricultural communications to support teaching and research in the field. The university plans to have at least three teaching positions and include initiatives in environmental and consumer communications.
“Agricultural production needs to nearly double by 2050,” said James C. Collins, president – DuPont Crop Protection. “Science from DuPont is part of the solution. We’ll also need collaboration and innovation across sectors to meet the challenge. And effective communications is vital to our ability to do that.”
“We are grateful for DuPont’s willingness to support this important initiative that will benefit the university’s students in agricultural communications for years to come,” said Robert Hauser, interim dean of the College of ACES.
Pioneer Hi-Bred is the world’s leading source of customized solutions for farmers, livestock producers and grain and oilseed processors. With headquarters in Johnston, Iowa, Pioneer provides access to advanced plant genetics in nearly 70 countries.
DuPont is a science-based products and services company. Founded in 1802, DuPont puts science to work by creating sustainable solutions essential to a better, safer, healthier life for people everywhere. Operating in more than 70 countries, DuPont offers a wide range of innovative products and services for markets including agriculture and food; building and construction; communications; and transportation.
Josh St. Peters
University of Illinois