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K-State Today

November 17, 2022

SIIL receives Outstanding Support for International Initiatives Award

Submitted by Grant Chapman

Pictured left to right, Marcellus Caldas, Assistant Provost OIP, Jessica Means, SIIL Business Manager, Vara Prasad, SIIL Program Director,  B. Jan Middendorf, SIIL Associate Director, Grant Chapman, Associate Provost OIP

The Office of International Programs recognizes Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Sustainable Intensification, or SIIL, for the 2022 Outstanding Support for International Initiatives Award as part of International Education Week at Kansas State University. 

The Office of International Programs established the award in 2013 to recognize additional globally engaged areas within the K-State community. Given by the Office of International Programs' leadership team, this recognition is announced annually during the International Education Week celebration to recognize a K-State department, unit or organization that has gone above and beyond in global engagement, in support of international initiatives and/or in serving a global student and/or faculty body in extraordinary ways.

The lab's research, education, outreach, service and leadership activities are focused on increasing production of safe, nutritious and healthy food from existing farmland and without damaging our natural resources. It has programs in multiple countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America and Caribbean. It continues to build human, social and institutional capacity of host countries' scholars and partners to empower them to find local and practical solutions to address issues related to food insecurity, nutritional insecurity and threats from climate change. To date, the lab has partnered and collaborated with more than 100 organizations, supported 120 research scholars, provided long-term degree training to more than 150 students, and short-term training to over 30,000 individuals in 13 different countries around the world. The lab is funded through Feed the Future program of the U.S. Agency for International Development.

The Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab expanded international activities throughout 2021 into 2022. These expanded international activities impact the world and the Manhattan community. The lab is truly a global leader at K-State for international research, outreach, teaching/learning, development, and collaborative international exchange.

"We recognize SIIL's global leadership of its team with many new initiatives recently, which include the Philippine's Conservation Agriculture for Organic Agriculture project started in 2021 involving K-State with many new Philippine university partners," said Grant Chapman, associate provost for international programs. "We recognize the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology-India two-month intensive training program at K-State in the summer of 2022. We recognize the 2022 five-year $12 million grant to the lab from the USAID — Haiti Mission to establish a Center of Excellence on Mitigation, Adaptation and Resilience to Climate Change in Haiti that will enhance capacity of six local universities to support agriculture-led growth, thus, adding Haiti Universities as K-State partners for the first time." 

"We appreciate SIIL bringing honorable visitors in 2022 such as the vice chancellor of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in India, along with the deans, vice deans, faculty and students from the Royal University of Agriculture, Cambodia, and assisting them with curriculum development and expertise," said Marcellus Caldas, assistant provost for international faculty collaborations and education programs.

Vara Prasad, university distinguished professor and director of of the Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab, said, "This award is a recognition of all members of SIIL family and all its collaborators and partners for their hard work and dedication to make a positive impact on people and helping to build happy, healthy and resilient communities. We are all global citizens working toward improving the lives and livelihood of people, particularly smallholder farmers. Our success is because of the excellent support we have from the staff at various departments, colleges, Office of International Programs, Officer of International Student and Scholar Services, Pre- and Post-Award Services and leadership at all levels at K-State. It takes the entire university to make our work easier, exciting and purposeful."

Past recipients of this award:

  • 2018 — Staley School of Leadership Studies.
  • 2019 — College of Agriculture.
  • 2020 — Housing and Dining Services.
  • 2021 — Risk and Compliance and International Travel Risk Advisory Board.