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NMPF Scholarship Program Awards $20,000 to Outstanding Graduate Students

ARLINGTON, VA | The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) announced the recipients of its 2023 National Dairy Leadership Scholarship awards, recognizing outstanding graduate students pursuing research of interest to the U.S. dairy industry. The awards, funded by dairy farmers and their cooperatives, support the next generation of dairy researchers, extension staff, academics and industry professionals.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors, we extend our congratulations to this year’s exceptional scholarship recipients,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF. “We are confident that these students will play a significant role in shaping the future of the dairy industry and look forward to the contributions they will make in the years to come.”

This year's scholarship recipients represent a diverse group of talents, each with their unique contributions to the dairy sector. Their areas of academic focus span from dairy cattle management to food science technology. The winners of the 2023 National Dairy Leadership Scholarship Program are:

  • Alanna Staffin, Penn State University

  • Alyssa Thibodeau, Oregon State University

  • Bhaswati Chowdhury, South Dakota State University

  • Luke Fuerniss, Texas Tech University

  • Usman Arshad, University of Florida

NMPF also sponsors student awards through the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA). This year’s Richard M. Hoyt Award winner, Megan Abeyta, was recognized at ADSA’s annual meeting June 1. Her research specializes in evaluating the impacts of stress on dairy cattle digestion.

Graduate students Ursula Abou-Rjeileh of Michigan State University and Jean Franco Fiallo Diez of Texas Tech University received first-place recognition as part of the NMPF sponsored ADSA Graduate Student Paper Presentation Contest in Dairy Production in the Ph.D. and M.S. divisions, respectively.

Learn more about the NMPF scholarship program here. The 2024 application period will open in January 2024. For information about ADSA awards, visit its awards page here.


The National Milk Producers Federation, based in Arlington, VA, develops and carries out policies that advance dairy producers and the cooperatives they own. NMPF’s member cooperatives produce more than two-thirds of U.S. milk, making NMPF dairy’s voice on Capitol Hill and with government agencies. For more, visit


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