December 22nd, 2003

AMES, Iowa — A $100,000 gift from Syngenta Corporation will help fund graduate fellowships in Seed Science at Iowa State University.

"This gift will help us attract the future leaders and prepare them to enhance our seed industry's ability to lead the world in supplying quality genetics," said Manjit Misra, director of the Seed Science Center at Iowa State.

The gift is part of a $1 million fundraising effort to establish endowed graduate fellowships in Seed Science. The project is a joint initiative between the Iowa Seed Association and Iowa State University Foundation. The goal of the campaign is to build an endowment that will provide eight quarter-time graduate assistantships that prepare students to manage seed research.

John Sorensen, president of Syngenta Seeds said, "As the world's leading agribusiness, Syngenta is pleased to support this fellowship program. Providing funds to the seed science graduate program not only enables the students to develop their potential as leaders in the seed science field through their research projects but also ensures we continue to develop and test improved seed, seed treatments and crop protection solutions that benefit farming operations and make farming more profitable."

The Seed Science Center will identify, recruit and retain the graduate scholars, whose main research focus will center on seed issues. The students may enroll in agronomy, agricultural engineering, plant pathology, horticulture, economics, entomology or other departments in the College of Agriculture.

Syngenta is a world-leading agribusiness committed to sustainable agriculture through innovative research and technology. The company is a leader in crop protection and ranks third in the high-value commercial seeds market. Sales in 2002 were approximately $6.2 billion. Syngenta employs 20,000 people in over 90 countries. Further information is available at


Manjit Misra, Seed Science Center, (515) 294-6821

Rich Bundy, Agriculture Development, (515) 294-9088

Barbara McManus, Agriculture Communications, (515) 294-0707