*Novartis Animal Health is partnered with the National FFA Organization to offer grants in support of Supervised Agricultural Experience projects.
*Eight high school students will be selected to receive $1,000.
*Grants are available in beef, dairy, swine and veterinary medicine.
GREENSBORO, N.C. (September 29, 2010) – In an effort to offer real-world experience to future agriculture professionals, Novartis Animal Health US, Inc., will offer grants to eight high school students of the National FFA Organization as part of an ongoing partnership. Each grant is $1,000 and will provide the students the opportunity to be involved with an animal health-related Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) project. SAE projects typically involve research, employment with an agricultural business or an entrepreneurial project in which the student plans and operates an agriculture-related enterprise.
The relationship between Novartis Animal Health and FFA demonstrates the importance Novartis places on supporting youth for the future for all facets of agriculture, especially animal health. Novartis will support SAE projects in the categories of beef production, dairy production, swine production and veterinary medicine.
“Novartis Animal Health has been a sponsor of the National FFA Organization for many years,” said Steven Boren, vice president of farm animal business sales and marketing for Novartis Animal Health and who is serving as a member of the National FFA Foundation Sponsors’ Board. “As the population grows over time and as the demand for food increases, the need to keep young people interested and involved in production agriculture will be critical. The SAE program is excellent for this because students are able to take the notes and lessons from the classroom and apply them to real-world scenarios. By guiding students with these projects, we can help in maintaining the importance of working in agriculture.”
The 2010 SAE grant application period opened on September 1, 2010 and the deadline to submit grant applications is Monday, Nov. 15, 2010. SAE grant winners will be announced in December 2010. To be eligible for a SAE grant, students must be in the seventh through 11th grade during the 2010 calendar year, have an SAE and be a member of FFA. Additional information regarding these grant opportunities can be found on the National FFA Organization website: www.ffa.org/programs/view/dsp_sae.cfm .
Novartis Animal Health will also be stationed at booth 652 at the 2010 National FFA Convention Career Show on October 20-22 in Indianapolis, IN, and students are encouraged to stop by to learn more about the grants offered.
About Novartis Animal Health US, Inc.
Headquartered in Greensboro, NC, Novartis Animal Health US, Inc. researches, develops and commercializes leading animal treatments that meet the needs of pet owners, farmers and veterinarians. Part of the Basel, Switzerland-based Novartis Animal Health global organization, the US business is the largest of the 40 countries where Novartis Animal Health operates. For more information about Novartis Animal Health US, Inc., please consult www.ah.novartis.us .
Novartis provides healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Focused solely on healthcare, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, preventive vaccines, diagnostic tools and consumer health products. Novartis is the only company with leading positions in these areas. In 2009, the Group’s continuing operations achieved net sales of USD 44.3 billion, while approximately USD 7.5 billion was invested in R&D activities throughout the Group. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis Group companies employ approximately 102,000 full-time-equivalent associates and operate in more than 140 countries around the world. For more information, please visit www.novartis.com .
About the National FFA Organization
The National FFA Organization, formerly known as Future Farmers of America, is a national youth organization of 523,309 student members (and counting)—all preparing for leadership and careers in the science, business and technology of agriculture—as part of 7,487 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The National FFA Organization changed to its present name in 1988 in recognition of the growth and diversity of agriculture and agricultural education. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a Federal Charter granted by the 81st United States Congress, and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. Visit www.ffa.org  for more information.
For more information, contact:
Novartis Animal Health Communications
(336) 387-1080 (office)
(336) 601-8079 (mobile)
or Mickey McDermott
Novartis Animal Health Communication
(336) 387-3924 (office)
(336) 636-1686 (mobile)