Multicultural Undergraduate Opportunities


The College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences is committed to providing all students with an academic community that nurtures diversity and recognizes the importance of multiple world views and cultural styles. To accomplish this goal, we provide significant programmatic support for students through several interwoven programs designed to create an encouraging and successful learning environment that will assist with the transition, continued success at the University and in CFANS, and prepared for life in our ever-changing and more diverse society. 


Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS)

MANRRS is a national student organization that provides students with an expanded network and social, professional and career building opportunities. The organization holds an annual national conference with poster sessions, public speaking events and career/internship fair.

Research Opportunities and Design (ROaD) Program

As a major research institution, the University encourages all students to have at least one research experience as a part of their academic career. The ROaD program assists students in exploring research options, finding a faculty mentor and writing a research proposal through five workshop sessions.  Students who participate in the program also have the opportunity to submit their final research proposal for funding. This program will be returning in the future. For more information, please contact Joseph Ballard II, Coordinator for Diversity Retention and Recruitment at

Dean's Engaged Leaders Program (DELP)

The Dean's Engaged Leaders Program is a unique opportunity for incoming CFANS first-year students who are committed to developing their potential as leaders in a multicultural society. This seminar is a year-long course focusing on leadership, multiculturalism, and much more!

Student Excellence in Academics and Multiculturalism (SEAM)

All incoming first-year multicultural students are invited to participate in SEAM. Students self-identify to register for three classes in common, as well as other social opportunities. This program will be returning in the near future in a new format. Contact Joseph Ballard II at or 612-626-3397 for further information about this opportunity. 

Academic and Life Coaching

The Office for Diversity and Inclusion is excited to launch our “Academic and Life Coaching” program for students in CFANS to assist with supporting students to be holistically successful (academic, professional, and personal). The Academic and Life Coaching program is intended to help students develop their strengths, determine what it takes to be a successful student in CFANS and at the U, and connect students to campus and community resources.  This service includes one-on-one meetings with our Coordinator for Diversity Retention and Recruitment and provides students an opportunity to talk about both academic and non-academic topics.

During an academic and/or life coaching session, students will have the opportunity to:

  • create their own academic goals and plan to overcome barriers to academic success
  • develop various approaches to time management
  • design a concrete study plan
  • learn about and be connected to campus and community resources
  • and many more skills

President's Emerging Scholars (PES)

PES is a merit-based scholarship and student success program that supports underserved students in their pursuit of a bachelor's degree at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Program participants benefit from a full range of services that enhance and support their academic success during the important first year of their college career.

LeaderShape Institute

LeaderShape is a unique partnership between the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences, the College of Science and Engineering and the Carlson School of Management. The Institute™ is LeaderShape's six-day immersion program that challenges participants to lead with integrity while working towards a vision grounded in their deepest values. Be on the lookout for applications for the 2019 UMN LeaderShape session in Fall 2018. 

"CFANS Achieve" Mentoring Program

The Office for Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) "CFANS Achieve" mentoring program is a structured mentoring program for undergraduate students of color in CFANS to gain knowledge, skills, abilities, networks and connections to resources that will be essential to their academic, personal, and professional success. This mentoring program aims to also provide a sense of community for students of color within the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS) and the University of Minnesota. Mentors will provide additional academic, psychological and emotional support, goal-setting and career support, and serve as a role model to their mentee. Incoming freshmen and sophomores will be paired with a junior or senior CFANS student as their mentor. Additionally, current juniors and seniors will be paired with a CFANS Graduate Student.

Applications are now closed to be a part of the CFANS Achieve Mentoring Program for the 2018-2019 academic year. If you are interested, need more information, or have questions please email Joseph Ballard II at  

CFANS Student Ambassadors

Looking for a new leadership opportunity and a way to pay it forward and give back? CFANS is excited to announce a new opportunity; the CFANS Student Ambassadors. 

The CFANS Ambassadors are CFANS undergraduate students who are passionate about CFANS and sharing their experiences with others. These volunteer students are energetic, dedicated, and knowledgeable as they represent CFANS and the U of M.

Ambassadors will participate in a variety of campus and CFANS activities such as: special campus events, prospective student outreach and follow up, student panel discussions, focus group participation, K-12 outreach and other student services projects. 

Ambassadors are involved with CFANS recruitment, retention, diversity, advancement, and alumni activities. Ambassador activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Give campus tours to prospective students and families
  • Prospective student outreach and follow-up
  • Student panel participation 
  • Meet with alumni and donors
  • Engage with CFANS community at various special events
  • Community outreach throughout the Twin Cities

Within the CFANS Ambassadors Program, there is a Diversity Ambassadors Subcommittee. This subcommittee will assist with the recruitment, outreach, retention, and community outreach/building efforts for underrepresented and marginalized prospective and current students in CFANS. This subcommittee will work extensively with the Office for Diversity and Inclusion team under the guidance, mentorship, and support of the Coordinator for Diversity Retention and Recruitment, Joseph Ballard II.  You will still be able to support and work on the other subcommittees. To learn more about the CFANS Ambassadors program and to apply for the Diversity Subcommittee, please visit the CFANS Ambassadors Program  website. 

 If you have any questions or would like to learn more, please contact Joseph Ballard II, Coordinator for Diversity Retention and Recruitment at

Office for Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) Success Workshop Series

The Office for Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) is launching our 'ODI Success Workshop Series' to help students navigate the college experience.

The Office for Diversity and Inclusion will collaborate with several campus partners throughout the university to provide students with the following:

  • Holistic preparation for life during and after the undergraduate experience at The University of Minnesota.
  • Resources available throughout the University and Twin-Cities area that are helpful to a successful academic and social experience.

If you have any questions or need any more information about the ODI Success Workshop Series, you can reach out to Joseph Ballard II, Coordinator for Diversity Retention and Recruitment at

Be on the lookout for our Fall 2018 workshops very soon!


Diversity in Food and Natural Resources Scholarship (DFNRS)

This merit based program offers academically gifted students committed to creating greater diversity in CFANS a significant four-year scholarship award. Students maintain their award by continuing to demonstrate academic excellence and by participating in program activities through the Office for Diversity and Inclusion. This scholarship is generally for first-year students and does not require a separate application. For details, see CFANS Scholarships for Entering Freshmen.

Scholarly Excellence in Equity and Diversity (SEED) Awards

The undergraduate Scholarly Excellence in Equity and Diversity (SEED) Award program, facilitated through the Office for Equity and Diversity (OED), honors outstanding diverse undergraduate students who are currently registered for full-time study at any of the University of Minnesota's campuses. SEED Award recipients are diverse students who demonstrate impressive achievement and leadership in at least ONE of the two following areas: (1) Academic performance and engagement within the chosen field of study. The field of study need not be in the areas of equity, diversity, ethnic studies, GLBT studies, etc., but students must demonstrate an exceptional commitment and achievement in the area(s) of study they have chosen to pursue at the University of Minnesota. (2) Community outreach and activism. Students should demonstrate an exceptional commitment to and engagement with a particular issue of social justice, community, and/or community organization. Such community activism can take place on or off any of the University of Minnesota's campuses.

To apply, or for more information, click here.