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Academic Programs

Physical Address:
E. J. Iddings Agricultural Science Laboratory, Room 65
606 S Rayburn St

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive MS 2336
Moscow, ID 83844-2336

Phone: 208-885-7984

Fax: 208-885-6654

Email: cals-advising@uidaho.edu

Web: uidaho.edu/cals

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Higher Education Multicultural Scholars Program

With support from the United States Department of Agriculture, the University of Idaho offers the Multicultural Scholars Program for students pursuing degrees in agriculture and life sciences.

This year our scholars will be traveling to Northern Italy, Switzerland and Southern Germany to learn more about careers or graduate education in agricultural and life sciences. The trip will also expose them even further to international agriculture and global collaboration to solve problems and engage in a multi-faceted system.

About our scholars

Ubaldo AranaWhat is your major?

I am a biology and animal science — Pre-vet option double major.

What is your favorite quote and why?

Step with care and great tact, and remember that life’s a great balancing act. -Dr. Seuss. To me, life is all about balance. Between work, school, friends, family, and whatever else I may have going on, I have to find time for everything, including taking care of myself. We live in an incredible world, and living a balanced life is the only way I will be able to see the most of it.

What is a MSP Scholar?

An MSP Scholar is an individual who is committed to academics, and giving back. Personally, I hope to use everything I learn here at the University of Idaho and wherever else I may go to help the Hispanic population in rural towns through veterinary medicine. The MSP has allowed me to focus in on this goal, and they have opened up avenues to make it a reality.

What does the MSP Program do for you?

The MSP program not only gives me an academic scholarship, but it allows me to go places I wouldn’t go otherwise. For example, we received a tour of the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostics Lab, which was an incredible experience for me as an aspiring veterinarian.

What factors influenced your decision to attend UI?

I knew that the University of Idaho was a research institution with strong agriculture and biology programs, something I did not see in other schools in Idaho. Because it was in my home state, it was also affordable through sholarships. UI isn’t too far from home, making visits to go see my family possible throughout my time here.

What is your best experience at UI and why?

My best experience here at UI has been being a Resident Assistant. This role has allowed me to grow as a leader and friend. I have met some amazing people and it has taught me how to interact with others in a way I would have never learned otherwise.

What is your funniest experience at UI?

I dressed as a female lady bug for Halloween and the reactions of those who took five minutes to realize that it was me is something I will never forget.

What is your best experience as part of MSP?

My best experience so far has been visiting the Washington Disease Diagnostics Lab, as it gave me a glimpse at what I might be doing not too long from now.

What does it mean to you to be a leader?

To me, being a leader means being a friend. A leader is someone who cares about everyone they meet, someone who makes a friend’s goal their own. They give selflessly whenever possible and most importantly, they enjoy it.

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

My favorite place on campus is the new Arboretum. There is nothing like going on a run through it. It gives me a sense of peace that I can’t find anywhere else.

What is your favorite part of your department and why?

My favorite part of the Animal and Veterinary Science department is how accepting and friendly everyone is. All of the faculty and staff is more than willing to help with any problem you may have and is is great having that kind of support.

Who is your favorite professor and why?

My favorite person isn’t exactly a professor, but Alton Campbell, the director of the University Honors Program, is one of the most influential people in my life. He sees so much in me and with his guidance he has helped me achieve some pretty incredible goals. I would not be where I am today if it was not for him.

What is your favorite part of your major?

My favorite part of my animal science major so far has to be the professors in the department. They all care so much about what they teach and this enthusiasm makes learning difficult material so much more enjoyable.

What is the best part of being a Vandal and why?

The best part of being a Vandal is the sense of community you feel here on campus. No matter where you live or what your major is, being a Vandal brings us all together and I find that to be something very special.

What other organizations/clubs are you involved with, how were they great and how did they influence you?

I am a member of the honors program, and it has completely changed my college experience. It has given me some amazing friends, exceptional classes and many opportunities to have fun outside of school. I am also the events coordinator for the Pre-Veterinary Club and besides giving me leadership experience, the club has given me fun opportunities to interact with animals, as well as giving me information on veterinary school.

What do you do over the summers? Have you had any interesting jobs/internships?

This last summer I worked at my local veterinary clinic back home. It was an amazing experience that showed me what being a veterinarian was really like and it motivated me even more to do well in school and make it into veterinary school.

What word best describes you and why?

I would like to think that the world “personable” describes me well. I do my best to be friendly and outgoing. I care about those I meet and I try to be the best friend I can possibly be.

How do you spend your free time?

I like to spend my free time exercising. Whether that be running, lifting weights, wrestling or playing any other sport, there’s nothing like a good workout.

How do you feel satisfied?

I feel satisfaction after a long, productive day. I love knowing that I accomplished a lot, and checking things off of my to-do list will never get old.

Do you recommend others to get involved and why?

I can’t imagine going through college without getting involved. Getting involved with anything, from sports to any number of different clubs, gives you experiences you won’t find anywhere else, along with giving you friendships that may last a lifetime.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

No matter where I end up living or what I may end up doing, I see myself as happy in ten years.

Margarita ContrerasWhat is your major?

Agricultural Business, Minor: Accounting
Portfolio: http://margaritacontreraseportfolio.weebly.com/

What is your favorite quote and why?

“You must do the things you think you cannot do.” By Eleanor Roosevelt

I like this quote because most of the times we prohibit ourselves from doing things we are afraid of. It should not be like this, we must do everything we like and not be afraid of trying something new because we think we cannot do it.

What is a MSP Scholar?

An MSP Scholar is a diverse student who receives a scholarship funded through the USDA for four years and is part of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences. The scholar must complete requirements to receive the scholarship such as be involved in organizations and participates in a variety of events.

What does the MSP Program do for you?

The MSP Program provided me with financial help, resources around the University of Idaho and introduced me to professionals who have been helpful throughout my college career.

What factors influenced your decision to attend UI?

The main factor to attend UI was the Agricultural Business program and the financial help I received coming in as a freshman. Specifically the MSP program has been my main source of financial support. I also liked the small town and community where UI is located.

What is your best experience at UI and why?

My best experience at the UI has been my freshman year because I got to meet long-term friends and participate in the CAMP program where we attended several activities such as camping and dinners. We were like family and always counted on each other which I enjoyed coming as a freshman.

What is your funniest experience at UI?

My funniest experience at UI was when Rachael tripped while taking pictures for the Tradition Keeper book.

What is your best experience as part of MSP?

My best experience as part of MSP was when Ana, Bailey, Rachael and I went around the University of Idaho taking pictures to complete the Tradition Keeper book.

What does it mean to you to be a leader?

It means to be responsible, ethical and maintain a set of skills that can influence other people. It is being flexible, have courage and able to multitask and maintain a good relationship with teammates or co-workers.

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

My favorite place on campus is the hello walk during the fall and summer season because it looks beautiful.

What is your favorite part of your department and why?

My favorite part of the department is room 65 because its decorated and comfortable to be in.

Who is your favorite professor and why?

My favorite professor is Philip Watson because I like the way he teaches and he is very nice.

What is your favorite part of your major?

My favorite part of my major is that is related to agriculture and always stands out because many people do not know about this major.

What is the best part of being a Vandal and why?

The best part of being a Vandal is to be recognized as exceeding academically and makes me proud to be part of the University of Idaho where many people are helpful.

What other organizations/clubs are you involved with, how were they great and how did they influence you?

Association of Latino Professionals for America, it is great because I was able to gain leadership skills as well as to build relationships with professionals. I also had the opportunity to interview for a variety of jobs and attend conventions.

What do you do over the summers? Have you had any interesting jobs/internships?

During my college career for two summers I had internships and my last summer I took a job during the weekends. My internships were with the Migrant education Program and Wells Fargo. Both of them were a great learning experience where I got to meet many professionals who have been a great help throughout my college career.

What word best describes you and why?

Responsible because I seem to be busy most of the time and I like to take care of my things on time.

How do you spend your free time?

I like to spend my free time hanging out with friends and going out to different restaurants and try different foods.

How do you feel satisfied?

I feel satisfied with my entire work and college career.

Do you recommend others to get involved and why?

Yes, it is a great opportunity to build your resume and leadership skills. You will also get to meet people who can become important in your college career. It is a way to network and build relationships.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

I see myself working in a financial service company in a high level position as a credit analyst and still learning and most likely to continue my education.

Rachel Larrick

What is your major?

Nutrition and Apparel, Textiles and Design

What is your favorite quote and why?

“Those who matter don't mind, and those who mind don't matter.” I like this quote because I think too many people care about the thoughts of others, and often find themselves trying to please everyone but themselves.

What is a MSP Scholar?

A MSP Scholar is someone who represents the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences' multicultural groups and continues to grow through experience provided through the grant, while bringing new ideas to the table.

What does the MSP Program do for you?

The MSP program provides an out of class learning environment as well as some great friends.

What factors influenced your decision to attend UI?

I wanted to go to an affordable school in the northwest with a smaller class environment, UI just felt right.

What is your best experience at UI and why?

My best experience was probably joining my sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta, it provided me with life-long friends, and I will always be thankful for that.

What is your funniest experience at UI?

My funniest experience at UI was probably when one of my good friends was sliding down the escalator downtown, and landed on her bottom instead of her feet. But honestly, there's too many to count.

What is your best experience as part of MSP?

When I fell in front of the Admin steps while doing the scavenger hunt, I think that’s when we all truly bonded.

What does it mean to you to be a leader?

I think a leader is someone who is willing to lead by example and take responsibility for the task at hand.

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

Probably the Memorial Gym. I've had so many memories of intramurals and sports in there, being there just makes me feel nostalgic.

What is your favorite part of your department and why?

Both of my majors aren't very well known in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and I like that we are such a tight knit group of people.

Who is your favorite professor and why?

I think my favorite professor has to be Lori Wahl, she has been an excellent mentor, and she holds me up to a higher standard. She really wants to see all of us succeed and I really appreciate the support. Plus, she's attending our big trip.

What is your favorite part of your major?

My favorite part of my major is definitely learning all of the new equipment and programs, I'm an interactive learner and I love being challenged with new things.

What is the best part of being a Vandal and why?

The small community for sure. I love being able to walk to class and say "Hi" to at least a few people on the way.

What other organizations/clubs are you involved with, how were they great and how did they influence you?

I am a member of Kappa Alpha Theta. Theta has made me the confident woman I am today, and I constantly feel support from my best friends who I met in the house.

What do you do over the summers? Have you had any interesting jobs/internships?

I am a summer camp counselor for the City of Boise. It's the best because I basically get paid to play dodgeball with little kids all day!

What word best describes you and why?

I would probably say funny. I love cracking jokes and making people laugh.

How do you spend your free time?

I spend most of my free time hanging out with my friends.

How do you feel satisfied?

I feel the most satisfied when I win a tough game against one of our competitors in intramurals, I probably take them way too seriously.

Do you recommend others to get involved and why?

Totally! College is what you make of it, and getting involved is the easiest way to get the most out of it.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Hopefully working as a clothing designer for Patagonia, more specifically for their ski wear, I love the sport and the company!

Bailey Luna

What is your major?

Animal and Veterinary Science with Pre-Vet option and Biology

What is your favorite quote and why?

“Don’t ask questions that you don’t want to know the answer to.”- Agent K Men in Black III. This is my favorite quote because in my opinion it gives great advice. It helps me realize if I am ready to hear an answer to a question that is very important to me. If I don’t want to know or if I am afraid of the answer then it’s best that I don’t know at the time.

What is a MSP Scholar?

An MSP Scholar is a person who meet the requirement to be an MSP and are willing to give the time and energy to become a better person and be willing to invest into your future.

What does the MSP Program do for you?

The MSP program provides me with information and opportunities that I would have not been able to get without being part of the program. An example would be having different speakers come in and talk to us about different fields in Agriculture and where we can go with our degrees.

What factors influenced your decision to attend UI?

My family was one of the influences because the University of Idaho is close to home where I can get there in a day if an emergency happens but far enough away to where I live on my own and explore new things. This scholarship helped me get into University of Idaho, without it I probably would have stayed home and gone to Boise State University. What also made me chose the University of Idaho would be the animal program that they have and the care that they show to their students.

What is your best experience at UI and why?

My best experience at U of I would be going to all of the homecoming events and watching the whole university get involved. This is my best experience because it feels like the whole university is one and it gives you the sense of belonging and being part of a family.

What is your funniest experience at UI?

My funniest experience at U of I would be having nerf gun wars with my friends while living in the dorms. In the Wallace building two rooms are connected and to close it off you have a door to separate the 2 rooms. That space was known as the line between enemy territory and we wouldn’t be able to cross it unless you need to go to the bathroom. We would also have treaties that would happen after the different nerf gun wars.

What is your best experience as part of MSP?

My best experience as being part of MSP is all the different trips and events we go to. One trip that stands out is going over to WADDL and watching some of the animals get dissected and to see what was wrong with them. An event that stands out in my mind is the etiquette banquet. It’s fun to go and see how it has changed over the years and what meals will be served. It’s fun to watch and taste all of the all of the student’s different creations and being part of a business like atmosphere helps me view what it’s possibly like outside of college.

What does it mean to you to be a leader?

To me being a leader is knowing you have people looking up to you and following you, and doing what you do in their best interest. It also means to help not only others grow but yourself to grow as a person. Be willing to listen to other ideas and advice and be willing to give ideas and advice as well. It also means coming up with a decision together and acting upon it but be willing to lead them in the correction direction.

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

My favorite place on campus is Alice’s room. I make an attempt every year to go there at least twice. The reason it’s my favorite is, it helps you forget your worries for a bit and makes you relax and reflect on your life. The room itself is just a calm quiet and relaxing place. For me it helps get me time to myself and peace, not being able to worry about anything for a couple of minutes.

What is your favorite part of your department and why?

My favorite part about the department is how the professors care for their students and the hallways. The reason why the professors are my favorite is that they don’t act like you’re just a number on a spread sheet, they care about you as a person and student. Hallways are my favorite because it displays all of the different works that students, like myself, have completed over the years and it give me confidence that I could also do something like that as well.

Who is your favorite professor and why?

Most of the teachers I have had are pretty cool so it’s hard to pick a favorite but if I had to it would be a tie between Dr. Murdoch and Dr. Ahmadzadeh. Both of these professors have showed that they care about you as a person and as a student and are willing to help you. They also make being in class worth it from the information you get from them. They present the information in a very fun way.

What is your favorite part of your major?

My favorite part of my major is learning about the different animals and which disease effects them and if it could possibly transmitted to other animals or humans and how it would impact our lifestyles.

What is the best part of being a Vandal and why?

The best part of being a vandal would be getting the chance to meet like-minded individuals who share the same interest as you and being able to be who you are without being judged.

What other organizations/clubs are you involved with, how were they great and how did they influence you?

Clubs and organizations I were involved with were Pre-Vet Club and AgSac. This semester though, I am concentrating on my studies but would like to join other clubs hopefully in the spring semester and get more involved again. Clubs influence me to get more involved with my school and community and opens me up to more opportunities that I otherwise wouldn’t have if I wasn’t in the club.

What do you do over the summers? Have you had any interesting jobs/internships?

Over the summer I work for the Canola Breeding Program, this summer will be my fourth year working there. I have been looking at internships and possible study abroad programs. What stops me from going is money and fearing that I won’t have enough to do the study abroad or be able to get to my internship.

What word best describes you and why?

The word I would use to best describe me is wolves. I say wolves because they are very loyal creatures and love being part of a pack and are family oriented, which describes me. I am very loyal to my friends and family and I don’t like being alone a lot. Alone time is great but not all the time. It also shows my love for animals in the wild. Wolves also have a very similar organization and hunting patterns of Killer Whale, along with the family environment being similar.

How do you spend your free time?

In my free time I like to relax with either reading or watching tv. I will also solve logic puzzles to help my mind calm down and to not thinking about anything else but the puzzle. I will also color or draw when I feel completely relaxed so my color or drawing will reflected it. Lastly when my mind is completely free and my body is relaxed I will write.

How do you feel satisfied?

Well one way was Dec. 3, 2015 I caught my first claw machine prize. I spent six dollars on getting the prize but in my mind it was well worth it because the prize I won was a King Bob minion. The reason why I was so persistent in getting the minion was because it was the only minion my mom was missing from her collection and I really wanted to give it to her for Christmas. Besides grabbing a toy from the claw machine, I feel satisfied when I study really hard for a test and I get a good grade, finishing a good book, or even finishing a very hard logic puzzle.

Do you recommend others to get involved and why?

I do recommend others to get involve because it will help you make connections and give you opportunities that you thought might have been impossible to get if you didn’t have these connections.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Well that’s kind of a hard question since I don’t know what I will be doing tomorrow. In ten years I will be 31 so I hope that I am married and have a couple of kids, but I would love to be on the ocean researching Killer Whales and their mating rituals, if not whales than sharks are a good second option in my mind for researching.

Anna RodriguezWhat is your major?

Animal and Veterinary Sciences (Pre-Vet Option) Spanish Minor Microbiology Minor

What is your favorite quote and why?

“Life is a challenge, and only those who rise to the challenge truly know what it means to live.” ~Darren Shan

I really like this quote because I often find my life to have challenges that arise. This quote reminds me that the reason I face the challenges is to explore myself and the world around me. Rising up to the challenges I face make what I am doing worthwhile.

rodriguez posterWhat is a MSP Scholar?

An MSP Scholar is a student in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences who has proven to be exceedingly successful academically and as a leader in their community. This person is also someone who celebrates their culture.

What does the MSP Program do for you?

The MSP Program is supposed to provide opportunities for professional development as well as financial aid during college. During my freshman year the program helped us transition from high school to college by becoming familiar with our campus, programs, and resources on campus. We also visited a veterinary school and had presenters talk to us. We talked about using some of the money for professional development by working in a lab and gaining experience in that setting. It is a program that is meant to help students succeed.

What factors influenced your decision to attend UI?

This scholarship was a large part of my decision to attend the University of Idaho. I also thought this campus was very beautiful. It also had strong agricultural departments and the Animal and Veterinary Science major.

What is your best experience at UI and why?

The best experience I have had at UI has been in involvement in undergraduate research. It has provided me the opportunity to learn about science, as well as the opportunity to speak about my experiences in formal talks and poster sessions. Undergraduate research has helped me decide my next steps after I graduate and has helped me create valuable relationships.

What is your funniest experience at UI?

One of my funniest experiences was my freshman year. The MSP Scholars had to do a scavenger hunt, and when we were walking up the Mem-Gym stairs, one of the scholars fell, but popped right back up like nothing. She got up so fast and was so unfazed that we all laughed.

What is your best experience as part of MSP?

I have really enjoyed getting to know the other scholars and seeing how they have used the benefits of this program to have great experiences in college.

What does it mean to you to be a leader?

A leader is more than a person who has leadership qualities. It is more than standing up and taking charge. A leader is someone who is selfless, and interested in benefiting the world around them for no reason other than making their community a better place. One of my favorite quotes is, "Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others." John Maxwell

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

I have a few favorite places on campus. My top two are around the administration building on the I Bench. I also really enjoy being in our arboretums.

What is your favorite part of your department and why?

I enjoy all of the opportunities to gain applicable experience in my department. Students are able to work with livestock in their first year. There are also many research opportunities with our professors.

Who is your favorite professor and why?

One of my favorite professors, is Tanya Miura, PhD. She is also one of the faculty I have had the opportunity to spend the most time with. I took immunology with her, which was a very interesting course. I also have had the chance to work in her lab. She has been incredible to work with. She has been supportive and is always encouraging me to find ways to share my project. She is brilliant, confident, a great professor and fantastic mentor. I am thankful for the time I have been able to work with her.

What is your favorite part of your major?

My favorite part of my major is taking so many science classes. I really enjoy having a strong science understanding. This will prepare me for any career in science I choose.

What is the best part of being a Vandal and why?

The best part of being a vandal is the support system we have from our professors, instructors and alumni. It is great belonging to a community that is proud.

What other organizations/clubs are you involved with, how were they great and how did they influence you?

I am an ambassador for CALS which is a great opportunity to reach out to future students and share my love for this university. I have been a peer mentor which helped me connect with new vandals. I am a member of the Student Alumni Relation Board which is great opportunity to work with alumni, and current students. I have also been a senior New Student Orientation Leader which has helped me be more proud to be a Vandal.

Have you had any interesting jobs/internships?

I have tried to have a summer job to help me prepare for the future. One year, I had an internship with the Undergraduate Biology and Mathematics Program working with Steve Krone, PhD. With another student, we created an agent based spatial model that showed bacterial growth and their interactions with other bacteria and bacteriophage. It was very interesting and has been a great opportunity. Most recently I was in the Research Experience for Undergraduates with Tanya Miura, PhD. Often when people are sick it is due to more than one virus, so Dr. Miura's lab is working on a project involving Viral co-infection studies in vivo and in vitro. I have also helped with the development of a mathematical model that is applied to our laboratory research to better understand viral co-infection.

What word best describes you and why?

A believer. I want to find the best in the world and believe that there is a solution to all problems we face. I want to help provide some of the solutions to our problems.

How do you spend your free time?

I find new ways to relax and explore Moscow. I am not from this area and have loved learning about this community.

How do you feel satisfied?

When I have accomplished something I have been trying to achieve for some time.

Do you recommend others to get involved and why?

I absolutely recommend others get involved in their communities. When people are involved they feel like they are a bigger part of their community. This leads to people being proud of their community, and accomplishing things that are important.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In 10 years I would like to be happy in a career that satisfies my love for learning and excitement in everyday life.

The Higher Education Multicultural Scholars Program through the United States Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture, provides scholarships to support recruiting, engaging, retaining, mentoring, and training committed, eligible multicultural scholars, resulting in either degrees within the food and agricultural sciences or the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.) degree. The scholarships are intended to encourage outstanding students from groups that are traditionally underrepresented and underserved in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Through these scholarships, the goal of the program is to increase the participation in USDA mission area careers, of any group traditionally underrepresented. Underrepresented/underserved groups are those whose representation among food and agricultural professionals is disproportionately less than their proportion in the general population as indicated in standard statistical references, or as documented on a case-by-case basis by national survey data.

To accomplish this goal, the program provides competitive grants to colleges and universities that have (1) a demonstrable capacity to carry out the teaching of the food and agricultural sciences, and (2) proven capabilities for achieving representation of diverse, multicultural groups in the USDA mission areas. Applications are sought for student education that will:

  • prepare graduates to meet the demand for highly qualified personnel entering the STEM workforce within the food and agricultural sciences; 
  • pipeline more undergraduates into graduate education in USDA mission sciences; 
  • contribute to the reduction of the disparity among underrepresented and underserved populations entering graduate schools to reflect the demographics of this country and enable the American system of higher education to remain globally competitive; 
  • promote student success within food, agricultural and related science disciplines at the undergraduate/D.V.M. level; and 
  • focus on student learning, academic preparation, social support structure and professional mentoring to ensure entry into food and agricultural sciences areas and completion of graduate education or high level of competitiveness for the workforce. 

Contact

Academic Programs

Physical Address:
E. J. Iddings Agricultural Science Laboratory, Room 65
606 S Rayburn St

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Drive MS 2336
Moscow, ID 83844-2336

Phone: 208-885-7984

Fax: 208-885-6654

Email: cals-advising@uidaho.edu

Web: uidaho.edu/cals

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