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World Food Prize selects local as USDA Wallace-Carver Fellow

Nicholasville native Fabian Leon has been named the 2017 Wallace-Carver Fellow by the World Food Prize Foundation and The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The program — which was intended to inspire the next generation of American scientific, agricultural, and humanitarian leaders — was started by Ambassador Kenneth Quinn, president of the World Food Prize, and Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture. Over the past six years, 185 students have gone through the program.

This year, Leon, a rising junior at the University of Kentucky, and 28 other college students have the opportunity to collaborate with world-renowned scientists and policymakers through paid summer fellowships at leading USDA research centers and offices across the United States.

Fellows will analyze agricultural and economic policy; assist in the management of food, nutrition and rural development programs; and take part in field and laboratory-based research.

Leon is stationed in Ames, Iowa at the ARS, National Laboratory for Agriculture and The Environment.

The Wallace-Carver Fellowship culminates in a week-long, high-level leadership symposium at the USDA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., hosted by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. During the week, the Fellows will participate in a series of briefings, tours and discussions with key government officials as well as congressional and humanitarian leaders engaged in the fight against hunger.