WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwired - Sept. 23, 2015) - Sharing the success of other farmers is what motivates Cassandra Vickers. After a student co-op placement with Farm Credit Canada, where she got hooked on seeing what receiving a farm loan meant to farm families, she is planning on a career as an agricultural lender. She is now enrolled at the University of Guelph's Ridgetown Campus in the Agriculture Diploma program on her way to someday helping more farm families achieve their dreams.

Vickers is just one of 66 students from across Canada who will receive $1,500 Opportunity Scholarships to enter their first year of post-secondary agricultural education, thanks to the Monsanto Fund. Each of these young people has a different story about experience gained on their family farms, in community involvement, and in high school, and each has chosen a unique path.

"One day I want to go home at the end of my workday and believe that I have made a difference in the agriculture community," the Meaford, ON Grade 12 student wrote in her application. "I believe that agriculture is more than just a business sector, it's a lifestyle that I have proudly been a part of my whole life. It's a lifestyle that I want to continue in and extend to my family in the future."

The 2015 Monsanto Fund Opportunity Scholarship winners are all Grade 12 graduates from farm families who are enrolled in a first-year degree or diploma program in agriculture or an agricultural-related field this fall at a recognized Canadian educational institution.

All applications were reviewed by an independent judging panel comprised of: Robert Adamson, consultant and program director with Pembina Trails School Division; Johanne Ross, Executive Director of Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba Inc.; Kelly Green, Communications Director for the Canadian Canola Growers Association; Crystal Jorgenson, Communications Specialist for the Faculty of Agriculture and Food at the University of Manitoba; and Brigitte Burgoyne, Account Manager with ThinkShift Inc. Administered on behalf of the Monsanto Fund by Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba Inc. (AITC-M), the scholarship program received 135 applications from across Canada this year.

"I consider myself lucky to have the privilege of reading the applications as part of the judging process," said Johanne Ross, executive director of AITC-M. "No two stories are exactly alike, except for these kids' shared passion for agriculture. It gives me great pleasure to be part of this program and it gives me hope for the future of agriculture."

Contact us for information on the stories of scholarship winners near you. Details on the launch of the 2016 Monsanto Fund Opportunity Scholarship Program will be released in February 2016 and will also be available online at

About the Monsanto Fund

The Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Monsanto Company, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to strengthening the communities where farmers and Monsanto Company employees live and work. Visit the Monsanto Fund at

About Monsanto Canada

Headquartered in Winnipeg, MB, Monsanto Canada Inc. is part of the larger global Monsanto Company. Monsanto is an agricultural company committed to bringing a broad range of solutions to help nourish our growing world. We produce a variety of seeds ranging from fruits and vegetables to key crops - such as corn, soybeans, canola and cotton - that help farmers produce abundant and nutritious food. We work to find sustainable agriculture solutions that help farmers conserve natural resources, use data to improve farming practices, use water and other important resources more efficiently, and protect their crops from pests and disease. Through programs and partnerships, we collaborate with farmers, researchers, nonprofit organizations, universities and others to help tackle some of the world's biggest challenges.

To learn more about Monsanto, please visit: or follow us on Twitter @MonsantoCda.

NOTE: The complete list of 2015 Monsanto Fund Opportunity Scholarship winners, by province, is included below.

2015 Monsanto Fund Opportunity Scholarship Winners

Mackenzie Schuurman Mission, BC Marigje Bikker Barrhead, AB
Kayla Stump Malakwa, BC Katherine Crawford Didsbury, AB
Tianna Groeneveld Mannville, AB
Renée Huvenaars Hays, AB
Mikaela Klemp Mayerthorpe, AB
Katelyn Krupa Vimy, AB
Taylor Lassiter Bassano, AB
Brennan Munro Airdrie, AB
Lowell Nelson Morrin, AB
Christine Suominen Lacombe, AB
Megan Wanchuk Boyne Lake, AB
Kyle Wheeler Strathmore, AB
Tara Frisch Manitou, MB Kathryn Aldridge Kelfield, SK
Mackenzie Kozak Roblin, MB Lane Carles Radville, SK
Hayley Macaulay Killarney, MB Paige Connor Beechy, SK
Christopher Manchur Gilbert Plains, MB Alexis DeCorby Rocanville, SK
Carter McKinney Waskada, MB Sarah Lechler Porcupine Plain, SK
Bradley McLeod Mather, MB Jensen Manners Lloydminster, SK
Katie Meggison Goodlands, MB James Manson Dinsmore, SK
Lexus Ostberg Dominion City, MB Blayne Nichol Livelong, SK
Kathleen Porteous Marquette, MB Teanna Novak Kuroki, SK
Kantara Robertson Treherne, MB Sidney Olson Consul, SK
Connor Shirtliff Starbuck, MB Michelle Ostafie Mikado, SK
William Sikora Brandon, MB Dillan Plews Carnduff, SK
Marianne Sytnyk Oakburn, MB Karly Rumpel Craven, SK
Lara Teetaert Deloraine, MB Rachelle Smith Abernethy, SK
Kristen Timmerman Treherne, MB Kaitlyn Sonmor Marengo, SK
Rebecca Unrau Boissevain, MB Joyceline Toews Glaslyn, SK

Brendan Carson Sunderland, ON Ariane Bergeron St-Samuel, QC
Kyle Cornelissen Watford, ON Véronique Brisson Ste-Barbe, QC
Tyler Dietrich Desboro, ON Amélie Laliberté Leclercville, QC
Patrik Dohner Port Burwell, ON Laurie Laliberté Leclercville, QC
Danielle Farquharson Mt. Brydges, ON Anne-Sophie Paquet Neuville, QC
Elyse Kilbride Wallaceburg, ON
Mariann Lobbezoo Berkeley, ON MARITIMES
Bailey Pool Ridgetown, ON Julia Bland Avonport, NS
Erica Sayles Paris, ON Kyle Corsten Antigonish, NS
Cassidy Smith Berwick, ON Daniel McCallum Tabusintac, NB
Cassandra Vickers Meaford, ON
Genna Wright Kenilworth, ON

Contact Information:

Kelly Funke
Monsanto Canada
(204) 985-1035