Akriti Bhattarai Madeline Song
Akriti Bhattarai of Wethersfield, CT and Madeline Song of San Diego, CA are the co-recipients of the 2017 Elaine Syzmoniak Award.
Akriti and Madeline both received the award for their outstanding work as 2016 Borlaug-Ruan International Interns.
Akriti interned at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) in El Batán, Mexico where her research focused on the expedition of breeding processes to increase provitamin A in maize. Madeline interned at Maharashtra Hybrid Seed Company Limited (Mahyco) in Jalna, India where her research focused on silencing the brown planthopper gene in rice seedlings through RNA interference technology.
The Elaine Szymoniak Intern Award was created in 2010 and is named in honor of the Iowa State Senator, Des Moines City Council Member and hearing and speech specialist known for her dedicated public service and great efforts to save the World Food Prize. This award is presented annually to a Borlaug-Ruan International Intern whose fulfillment of his or her research program at an international research center best exemplifies Senator Szymoniak's commitment to meet the needs of the community and dedicated efforts to promote education, health, economic development, equality and justice.
Akriti is a student at the University of Connecticut, majoring in Biological Sciences. Madeline is a student at Princeton Unviersity majoring in International Relations and Public Policy.
Akriti and Madeline received their awards prior to the awarding of the 2017 World Food Prize to Dr. Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina of Nigeria.