Graduate students earn fellowships and awards

Brad Schick

Brad Schick

Schick selected for travel fund

Several Department of Agronomy and Horticulture graduate students have recently been honored with fellowships and awards for the 2015–16 academic year.

This spring, the 2015 Daniel T. Walters Graduate Student Travel Fund Award was presented to Brad Schick. Schick is pursuing a master’s in agronomy, specializing in range and forage science, and is advised by Professor Walt Schacht and Associate Professor John Guretzky.

This award was established to honor Dr. Walters and his passion for teaching and assisting graduate students.

Distinguished Fellowships and Awards Luncheon was held in October

Feyera Liben

Archie Clutter (left) and Feyera Liben

ARD Dean Archie Clutter presented the Widaman Trust Distinguished Graduate Assistant Award to Feyera Liben at the annual Distinguished Fellowships and Awards Luncheon held Oct. 12. Liben is advised by Professor Charles Wortmann and is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in agronomy. His area of research is extrapolating maize production technologies using crop model and spatial information in Ethiopia.

The Widaman Trust was established in 1975 through a generous gift provided to the University of Nebraska Foundation by Ms. Blanche Widaman. Widaman asked that the income from the trust be used for basic research in agriculture and that the funds be used for scholarships or fellowships for graduate students conducting basic research in agriculture.

Matt Pedersen

Archie Clutter (left) and Matt Pedersen

Matthew Pedersen, agronomy graduate student, was also honored at the luncheon with the John and Louise Skala Fellowship, presented by Clutter. This fellowship is available to recruit and recognize exceptional graduate students engaged in research in areas relating to new industrial uses of agricultural products.

Pedersen is currently pursuing his doctoral degree in agronomy. His main dissertation project is evaluating strobilurin fungicides as plant stress alleviators. Additionally, he has been studying the nutraceutical properties and inflammatory protective effects of amenity grass phenolic extracts. Pedersen is advised by Department Head Roch Gaussoin.

CASNR Dean Steve Waller also presented Pedersen with a North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture Graduate Student Teaching Award of Merit Certificate.

Beachell Fellowship Announced in October

Nonoy Bandillo

Nonoy Bandillo

Nonoy Bandillo, agronomy graduate student advised by Professor George Graef, was awarded the distinguished Henry M. Beachell Fellowship in October. Bandillo’s current research provides valuable information on the frequency and distribution of alleles governing economically important traits contained within the USDA soybean collection using population structure analysis and genome-wide association mapping. 

The Beachell Fellowship recognizes academic excellence and research potential in the agronomic and horticultural sciences. Dr. Beachell was a native Nebraskan who graduated from the department in 1930. He received the 1996 World Food Prize in honor of his contributions in the alleviation of world hunger.

For more information about graduate student fellowships and awards and how to apply, please email Marlene Busse at

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