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Alltech Young Scientist award winners announced at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference

Alltech Young Scientist award winners announced at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference

Winners hope to improve agriculture and the future of the world for the next generation

AYS is quickly becoming world’s most prestigious agri-science program for university students

[LEXINGTON, Ky.] – Two university students received awards in the 11th annual Alltech Young Scientist program, the largest global contest of its kind focused on rewarding scientific genius. The awards, recognizing future applications in the agri-science sector, were presented during ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference, an event dedicated to inspiring innovation in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, May 22–25. Now in its 32nd year, the annual international conference gathered more than 3,000 attendees from 71 countries to network and discuss world-changing ideas about business, science and agriculture.

The global undergraduate winner was Alonna Danielle Wright, who attends the University of Kentucky in the U.S. Wright was offered a fully funded Ph.D. position and $5,000 USD. The global graduate winner was Richard Lally, who attends the Institute of Technology Carlow, Ireland. Lally was offered a fully funded post-doctorate position and $10,000 USD. Dr. Aoife Lyons, director of educational initiatives at Alltech, and Victoria Liu, Alltech Young Scientist program manager, presented the awards in the famed Rupp Arena during ONE.

“This is absolutely amazing. I am chuffed with this award,” said Richard Lally, the graduate winner. “Thank you very much, Alltech, and thank you, Dr. Aoife Lyons, for running this programme. Research is never about one individual, so I would like to thank my peers in Carlow back home in Ireland and of course my professor, David Ryan.”

The aim of Lally’s research was plant growth promotion.

“I would like to thank Alltech for this opportunity to present my research this week,” said Alonna Danielle Wright, the undergraduate winner.

Wright’s winning entry investigated the biological control of agricultural pests.

This year, the program received an outstanding 191 nominations from 144 professors, representing the world’s top 117 universities from 42 countries. Each student’s paper first competed within their own region of North America, Latin America, Asia Pacific, or Europe and Africa. To participate, students were nominated by their professors and submitted scientific papers on topics such as animal health and nutrition, crop science, agriculture analytical methods, food chain safety and traceability, human health and nutrition, and other agri-science related sectors. The first place regional winners, eight in total, were invited to ONE, where a panel of leading judges selected the winners for the 2016 program.

“This year, we encouraged students to think about the ONE big idea that will help future generations and to search for solutions today to meet the challenges of tomorrow,” said Lyons. “The international panel of judges, led by professor Maurice Boland, were very impressed by this group of talented students, all of whom value their scientific education.

“On behalf of the judges, I congratulate these winners for rising to the challenge set to them,” continued Lyons. “They demonstrated huge skill, insightful thought and, of course, their potential as scientific leaders of tomorrow.”

Earlier this year, it was announced that 2016’s program would enter new territory by offering fully-funded Ph.D. and post-doctorate positions to the global undergraduate and graduate winners in addition to international recognition, trophies and cash awards, making the contest the most prestigious agri-science program for university students.

Entry for the 2017 program will open in September 2016. Visit education.alltech.com/alltech-young-scientist

The 2016 Alltech Young Scientist undergraduate winner Alonna Danielle Wright receiving her award from Dr. Aoife Lyons, director of education at Alltech, and Victoria Liu, Alltech Young Scientist program manager. Wright received a fully funded Ph.D. position and $5,000 USD.


The 2016 Alltech Young Scientist graduate winner Richard Lally thanking Alltech for his award from Dr. Aoife Lyons, director of education at Alltech, and Victoria Liu, Alltech Young Scientist program manager. Lally received a fully funded post-doctorate position and $10,000 USD.