Simms, Thomas Receive MANRRS Scholarships; Simms Third in Poster Competition

Tatum Simms, a crop, soil and environmental sciences Ph.D. candidate, finished third in the graduate student poster contest.
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Tatum Simms, a crop, soil and environmental sciences Ph.D. candidate, finished third in the graduate student poster contest.

Tatum Simms and Ivan Thomas represented U of A's chapter of Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences at the organization's national meeting, and both were awarded scholarships.

Simms was recognized as a ZinPro Scholar and Tatum as an AGCO Foundation Scholar, and each received a MANRRS Gold Scholarship.

ZinPro advances animal health and nutrition, and AGCO is an agricultural machinery manufacturer, and both sponsor gold scholarships.

Simms and Thomas are both students in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences. Simms, who is from Port Antonio, Jamaica, is a doctoral student in crop, soil and environmental sciences, and Thomas, who is from Lawton, Oklahoma, is a master's degree student in animal science.

At the conference, which was March 23-26 in Jacksonville, Florida, Simms placed third in the nation in the graduate student poster contest. Her research entry was "Understanding the Effects of Electrochemically Precipitated Struvite on Leachate Phosphorus, Nitrate and Ammonium via a Column-Leaching Study."

"I felt honored to have been selected as one of the 30 graduate students nationwide to be awarded a MANRRS Gold scholarship, and to have placed third out of 31 participants in the graduate research poster competition is a great accomplishment for me," Simms said. "It was also a wonderful experience getting to meet and dine with representatives from ZinPro who sponsored my scholarship; I was particularly impressed with the effort they made to meet with and get to know their scholars. The conference was very enlightening and packed with activities, including student competitions, professional development workshops, networking opportunities and a great career fair where we were able to gather and connect with academic and industry personnel, some of whom are themselves minorities in their fields, and are eager to serve as role models and mentors for us."

The MANRRS Gold Scholarship program awards high-performing students with $1,000 stipends to travel and participate in the annual national conference. Selected students are leaders in local chapters and/or participate in one of the MANRRS student competitions. Competitively based, select collegiate students who participate in the MANRRS Gold Scholarship also receive up to $1,000 academic scholarships. Recipients must major in food, agriculture, natural resources or a related field.

"My experience at the conference was spectacular. I was able to meet other people of color that are animal scientists and within the agriculture industry," Thomas said. "It was an honor to be on stage receiving my scholarship in front of everyone. MANRRS is a great program for those who want to meet more people who look like them within their industries. It also helps the future of agriculturalists by showing the youth you can do whatever you set your mind to and that the sky is the limit, no matter what color you are."

MANRRS promotes academic and professional advancement by empowering minorities in the agricultural sciences and related fields.

About the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences: Bumpers College provides life-changing opportunities to position and prepare graduates who will be leaders in the businesses associated with foods, family, the environment, agriculture, sustainability and human quality of life; and who will be first-choice candidates of employers looking for leaders, innovators, policy makers and entrepreneurs. The college is named for Dale Bumpers, former Arkansas governor and longtime U.S. senator who made the state prominent in national and international agriculture. For more information about Bumpers College, visit our website, and follow us on Twitter at @BumpersCollege and Instagram at BumpersCollege.

About the University of Arkansas: As Arkansas' flagship institution, the U of A provides an internationally competitive education in more than 200 academic programs. Founded in 1871, the U of A contributes more than $2.2 billion to Arkansas' economy through the teaching of new knowledge and skills, entrepreneurship and job development, discovery through research and creative activity while also providing training for professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the U of A among the few U.S. colleges and universities with the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the U of A among the top public universities in the nation. See how the U of A works to build a better world at Arkansas Research News.


Robby Edwards, director of communications
Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences


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