The Government of Catalonia has approved the signing of a collaborative agreement with the Balsells Foundation and the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) to establish the Balsells-Generalitat Scholarship program for postgraduate studies in the field of agricultural sciences. The new agreement is the result of sustained contact through 2014 between the Catalan Government's Ministry of Economy and Knowledge and Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food; contacts at UC Davis; and the President of the Balsells Foundation, Catalan engineer and long-time U.S. resident Peter J. Balsells.
The new scholarship program will follow the model established by two existing programs for postgraduate studies in engineering at the University of California, Irvine (UC Irvine) and the University of Colorado, Boulder (CU-Boulder), founded in 1996 and 2009 respectively. The program will allow Catalan university students to pursue a Master's degree in agricultural sciences at the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) at UC Davis. The scholarships will have an initial length of 12 months, renewable for another 12 months, and will allow students to enroll in coursework in the fields of food science and technology, biological systems engineering, and viticulture and enology. Catalan universities offer different degrees in agriculture and food sciences, such as Agricultural Engineering, Biotechnology, and Enology. The intent of the agreement is to expand the successful model already implemented at UC Irvine and CU-Boulder to include agricultural studies at UC Davis.
UC Davis is one of the ten campuses that make up the University of California, considered to be one of the best public university systems in the world. The university is renowned for both its academic excellence and global impact. The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UC Davis is the #1 college of its kind in the world. Through research, education, and outreach, it promotes healthier lifestyles and, in general, an improved standard of living, addressing critical issues related to agriculture, food systems and the environment.