NAFSI Scholarship Program


At First Nations Development Institute (First Nations), we believe that reclaiming control over local food systems is an important step toward ensuring the long-lasting health and economic well-being of Native people and communities.  Native food-system control has the potential to increase food production, improve health and nutrition, and eliminate food insecurity in rural and reservation-based communities, while also promoting entrepreneurship and economic development. 

The purpose of the Native Agriculture and Food Systems Scholarship Program is to encourage more Native American college students to enter these fields so that they can better assist their communities with these efforts. First Nations will award five $1,000 scholarships for the 2017-2018 academic school year to Native American college students majoring in agriculture and agriculture-related fields, including but not limited to agribusiness management, agriscience technologies, agronomy, animal husbandry, aquaponics, environmental studies, fisheries and wildlife, food production and safety, food-related policy and legislation, food science and technology, horticulture, irrigation science, nutrition education, and sustainable agriculture or food systems. 

Scholarship Eligibility

  • Applicant must be a full-time undergraduate or graduate student majoring in an agricultural-related field, or be able to demonstrate how their degree program relates to Native food systems.
  • Applicant must be tribally-affiliated and able to provide documentation.
  • Applicant must have a Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.75.
  • Applicant must demonstrate a commitment to helping his/her community reclaim local food-system control.

Scholarship Application Checklist

  • Online application
  • Proof of tribal affiliation (e.g. enrollment card, CIB, letter from tribe, etc.)
  • College enrollment verification form
  • Unofficial transcript
  • Letter of recommendation from faculty member
  • Essay (250-500 words) adressing:
    • 1) how you will use your degree to help your community reclaim control of its local/traditional food system, and
    • 2) how you plan to spend the scholarship money
  • Headshot photo for possible use in First Nations' publicity activities (optional)


Applications must be submitted online at by 5 p.m. Mountain Time on Thursday, September 28, 2017. Please allow enough time to complete the online form, including having your professor upload the recommendation letter. Incomplete applications and applications received after the deadline will not be considered. Additional documentation may be required upon award.


Start or Resume Application

To begin a new application:

To access a saved or submitted applicaiton:


Please contact Kendall Tallmadge ( or Abi Whiteing ( via email, or call (303) 774-7836.

Now accepting applications for the Native Agriculture & Food Systems Scholarship Program. 

First Nations is now accepting proposals for the Native Arts Initiative's "Supporting Native Arts" grant program.

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