World Ag Expo and E.M. Tharp, Inc. have teamed up for the tenth year to provide the "We Believe in Growing" scholarship which supports local high school students who will be attending four-year universities to major in an agricultural field. This year's winners, Wade Sousa and Madalyn Vieira, will each receive $2,500 scholarships to be renewed up to four years, totaling $10,000 per student.

"The future of ag is bright when placed in the hands of our best students," said Casey Tharp, Vice President of E.M. Tharp. "We're happy to once again partner with World Ag Expo to make opportunities available to students who are pursuing their lifelong dreams and passions in agriculture."

Madalyn Vieira, a student at Tulare Western High School, plans to study Dairy Science at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo this coming fall. She has participated in numerous FFA activities, works in a retail creamery, is the reigning District 9 Tulare County Dairy Princess and will graduate at the top of her class as the 2016 Valedictorian.

"I want to make a mark for women in agriculture," said Vieira. "I want to prove that we are talented, educated and brilliant in our respective areas."

Wade Sousa, a student at Tulare Union High School, plans to study agriculture business and crop science at Colorado State University. He is a four-year FFA member, a five-year 4-H member, and works long hours on his family dairy farm and as a relief feeder at Casa Blanca Cattle Company.

"I have been actively engaged in the agriculture industry since day one," said Sousa. "I look forward to the new experiences that college will give me and what the future of the dairy business has in store for me."

To be considered for the scholarship, students from across the Central Valley submitted letters of recommendation, high school transcripts, ACT or SAT scores and must expect to graduate from high school during the 2015-2016 school year. The winners will be recognized at World Ag Expo's Opening Ceremonies on Tuesday, February 9, 2016.
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