Farm Foundation Welcomes January 2023 Cultivators Program Cohort

Farm Foundation, an accelerator of practical solutions for agriculture, has announced its latest cohort of Cultivators to present at an upcoming Round Table Event. Twice a year, Farm Foundation gathers professionals from across the food and agriculture value chain to promote discussion and interaction among thought leaders in government, academics, agribusiness, and other interest groups.

The Cultivators Program gives the next generation of agribusiness leaders a seat at the table. Cultivators, who may be undergraduate or graduate students, are selected from a competitive pool of applicants from accredited North American colleges or universities. Students are nominated by their college dean or department head.

Each Cultivator is connected with a Farm Foundation Round Table participant who acts as a mentor for the meeting, letting students know what to expect and making sure they are interacting with other attendees. Cultivators are expected to participate in all aspects of the meeting and present a poster representing a key aspect of their studies.

“We are looking forward to the contribution of these outstanding students to the international trade conversation at the upcoming Round Table meeting,” says Jenna Wicks, program manager at Farm Foundation. “We believe that these students are the future leaders of the agriculture industry, and we look forward to nurturing a long and meaningful relationship with each of them.”

Cultivators selected for January 2023 are:

Prayash Pathak Chalise
University of Georgia
Prayash is a second-year graduate student in the Agriculture and Applied Economics department at the University of Georgia. His area of research is international development with a focus on  health, trade, and food economics. He is currently working on his master’s degree thesis and is also working on a research project studying the effect of food assistance programs on food insecurity.

Milosh McAdoo
North Carolina A&T State University
Milosh is in his final year of study for a Bachelor of Science degree in animal science with a concentration in animal industry from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. His passions align with creating more inclusive and equitable spaces within the agriculture industry, in addition to connecting the values of producers with those of consumers.

Dr. Taís de Menezes
Colorado State University
Taís is a doctoral student in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at Colorado State University. She is also a researcher on the agricultural policy team at the Center for Advanced Studies on Applied Economics in Brazil. She studied Economic Sciences at the Federal University of São Paulo and holds a master’s and a doctoral degree in Applied Economics from the University of São Paulo. Taís was a visiting researcher at Colorado State University from August 2021 to May 2022 under a Fulbright scholarship. Her research is focused on agricultural policy, animal health economics, and international trade. 

Maria Filipa Seara e Pereira
Purdue University
Maria Filipa is currently a doctoral student at Purdue University and a research assistant at the Global Trade Analysis Project (GTAP). She worked as a consultant in the World Bank’s Trade and Regional Integration Unit. Maria works mainly on topics of international trade and international development, particularly in modeling, trade policy, and the distributional effects of trade and global value chains. She has participated in several World Bank publications, including “World Development Report 2020: Trading for Development in the Age of Global Value Chains” and the “Western Balkans Regular Economic Report.” She holds a master’s degree in international policy and practice with a specialization in economics and international trade from the George Washington University and a master’s degree in political science from the Catholic University of Portugal.

Kelli Wicks
Oklahoma State University
Kelli is a second-year master’s student in the Master of International Agriculture Program (MIAP) at Oklahoma State University, focusing on trade and market development. She received her Bachelor of Science from Iowa State University in agriculture and society and international agriculture, with a minor in animal science. Kelli has diverse scholastic and professional work experience, including work at various agricultural entities such as the International Livestock Research Institute, USDA-ARS and FAS, and state and national checkoff organizations; Midwest Dairy; and the National Pork Board. She has work experience in Chile and Ethiopia as an intern and study abroad experience in Spain, all of which centered around issues of international trade and market development.

Carlos Zurita
Purdue University
Carlos is an economist and doctoral candidate in agricultural economics at Purdue University, funded by a Fulbright scholarship. He expects to graduate in August 2023. He received a Master of Economics degree from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. Carlos’ research focuses on international trade and is divided between the implementation and effects of multilateral and bilateral trade agreements and the gravity equation of international trade. He is studying a novel model of international trade that uses the theory on Power Laws to study the effects of geographical distance on bilateral trade flows. Carlos’ research on gravity in international trade is intended to become his job market paper. He has worked in the Ecuadorian public sector analyzing the impact of trade costs on exports.

The Farm Foundation Round Table is an invitation‐only group of thought leaders, policy makers, and influential figures from a broad cross‐section of the food and agriculture value chain. The group, with invited guests, meets twice a year to discuss issues of importance to agribusiness, the food system, and rural communities. Round Table discussions also generate new ideas for Farm Foundation project work. By attending these events, student Cultivators have the unique opportunity to interact with leaders in today’s food and agriculture sector. Learn more at

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