WCMA Supports Dairy Industry’s Future Leaders with $15,000 in Scholarships

Posted By: Ellie Herman WCMA News ,

The Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) announced the name of its of 2020 scholarship recipients. Each year, WCMA supports the dairy industry’s next generation of leaders through scholarship awards worth a total of $15,000.

“WCMA members recognize education as a key factor in the strengthening and growth of the dairy industry,” said John Umhoefer, WCMA Executive Director. “Our organization is honored to invest in the next generation of dairy leaders.”

Dairy processors and their family members are eligible for the WCMA Myron P. “Mike” Dean Cheese Industry Student Scholarship. Over 24 years, WCMA has awarded these $3,000 scholarships to 42 students. Winners of the 2020 Mike Dean Scholarships are:

  • Mary Kawleski, a product development employee at Agropur and graduate student in the Master of Food Technology program through the University of Georgia-Athens with a 3.95 GPA. Mary hopes to continue her career in food science to advance the possibilities of food applications.
  • Ashlyn Schnell, a research and development intern at Schreiber Foods and biology major and chemistry minor with a 3.96 GPA at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, graduating in 2021. Ashlyn plans to pursue a Master of Food Science degree and work as a lead food and research scientist in the dairy industry.

Winners of the 2020 WCMA Cheese Industry Supplier Student Scholarship are:

  • Samantha Hawkey, an administrative assistant at Kelley Supply and business management student at Northcentral Technical College in Wausau, WI with a 3.89 GPA. Samantha plans to further her education through a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resources and work professionally in the human resource department of Kelley Supply.
  • Theodore Jacoby IV, a former intern at Agropur and current dairy manufacturing major at South Dakota State University with a 3.92 GPA. Theodore plans to pursue a job with Agropur or obtain a masters or doctorate degree related to the dairy industry after graduation.
  • Morgan Knapp, a food technology intern at Agropur and chemistry major with a business concentration at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. After graduation, Morgan hopes to pursue a career in chemistry and pharmaceutical development.

Suppliers to the dairy industry and their family members have earned the WCMA Supplier Student Scholarship since 1999. This year’s winners are the 52nd, 53rd and 54th recipients recognized by the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association.

The source of scholarship monies is the annual Championship Cheese Auction, where gold medal cheeses from WCMA’s Championship Cheese Contests are sold to the highest bidders. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s live auction will take place online on Friday, April 24. Interested parties will receive additional details about the auction in the coming days.