HARRISBURG, Pa. — Madelynn Hoffman of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and Calvin Dechow of Centre County, Pennsylvania were recently awarded scholarships through the Dairy Excellence Foundation’s Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow (DLT) Program. The students were recognized with the scholarships after completing and passing at least one of the Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow certification exams and associated coursework during their high school careers. As college freshmen for the 2022-23 school year, both Madelynn and Calvin received a $3,000 scholarship to support their academic studies in dairy-related fields.
“These students not only excel in the classroom, but their passion for the dairy industry is unwavering. From their years of experience on their families’ dairy farms to the large number of hours they have invested into dairy judging and showmanship, these students already have an active role in the Pennsylvania dairy industry,” said Michelle Shearer, Workforce Development Manager at the Dairy Excellence Foundation. “Now college freshmen, they are expanding on the knowledge they gained throughout their high school Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow courses and applying it to their career goals. We can’t wait to see the imprint they continue to make on the industry in the very near future.”
Congratulations to these two students:
Madelynn Hoffman is a freshman studying animal science at Cornell University. While growing up on her family’s 70-cow robotic dairy farm in Lancaster County, Pa., Madelynn gained hands-on experience with calf care, cow comfort, and reproductive and herd health management. She is also responsible for many facets of the farm’s breeding program. Throughout high school, Madelynn was involved in the dairy bowl team at conventions like the National Holstein Convention. She also placed first in many public speaking competitions where she spoke about agritourism and consumer connection. Through the Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow courses, Madelynn gained valuable knowledge in areas such as dairy management and benchmarking. With an interest in dairy reproduction and genetics, Madelynn hopes to do research during her undergraduate career and eventually work at a veterinary clinic or genetics company.
“I am incredibly honored to be a DLT student scholarship recipient. Thank you to the Dairy Excellence Foundation for providing this scholarship to support me along with many other young dairy enthusiasts. I have come to appreciate not only the financial support I have received from the Foundation but also the academic lessons and exploration experiences that are provided to Pennsylvania dairy youth,” Madelynn said.
Calvin Dechow is a freshman studying animal science at The Pennsylvania State University. Growing up in Centre County, Pa., Calvin spent a lot of his free time at his grandfather’s dairy farm in New York. He prepared animals for show, maintained records of his herd, and competed in the show ring and in several dairy judging competitions through 4-H and FFA. The Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow Program helped Calvin expand on his interest in dairy genetics while learning about the financial and management practices that go into running a dairy operation. His goal after college is to work for a dairy genetics company or possibly continue his education to become a veterinarian.
“Receiving the Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow scholarship is an amazing honor. Dairy has always been a passion of mine, and with the scholarship, I’ll be able to invest in my future and someday be an asset to the dairy industry,” said Calvin.
The Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow program is managed by the Dairy Excellence Foundation and impacts more than 25,000 high school students each school year. The goal of the program is to prepare high school students to work in the dairy industry through classroom instruction, independent studies and virtual learning, on-farm experiences, and scholarship opportunities.
To qualify for the scholarship, students must be enrolled in a college or university beginning in the fall following their graduation from high school. This year’s recipients were selected based on their academic performance, evidence of leadership, character and integrity, and their commitment to pursuing a future career in dairy.
To learn more about the Dairy Leaders of Tomorrow scholarship program, visit www.dairyleadersoftomorrow.com or contact Michelle Shearer at firstname.lastname@example.org or 570-768-8316. The 2023 scholarship application will be available March 1, 2023.
–Emily Barge, Center for Dairy Excellence