HARRISBURG, Pa. — Ten undergraduate students were recently recognized with Student Leader Scholarships, an award intended to encourage and empower the next generation of dairy producers. Supported by the Dairy Excellence Foundation of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association and Tröegs Independent Brewing for the 2022-23 academic year, each scholarship recipient will receive $3,000 to support their undergraduate studies in academic programs that support the dairy industry.
“It’s clear that these 10 scholarship recipients are highly motivated and committed to pursuing future careers that support the Pennsylvania dairy industry. From interests in agricultural engineering and dairy science to communications and agribusiness management, the passion these students have for their education and agriculture as whole is remarkable,” said Michelle Shearer, Workforce Development Manager at the Dairy Excellence Foundation.
The Student Leader Scholarship program was designed to provide recognition, encouragement, and financial assistance to outstanding students enrolled in dairy-related academic programs—including dairy and animal science, agricultural marketing and business, nutrition, food science, agriculture and extension education, agricultural communications, agricultural engineering, or related fields.
“We support this scholarship program each year to help keep the next generation of Pennsylvania dairy vibrant and growing. These scholarships also help ease the financial burden for college students, allowing them to spend more time focusing on their studies and gaining hands-on experience across the industry,” said Dave Smith, Executive Director at the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association.
To qualify for the scholarship, students must be enrolled in a dairy-related undergraduate major and demonstrate a commitment to pursuing a future career in dairy. One scholarship is specifically designated for an incoming freshman.
“We use a lot of Pennsylvania grain, honey and produce in our beers and at our Snack Bar here at Tröegs,” says founding brother Chris Trogner. “And our cheese collaborations with Caputo Brothers Creamery use 100% Pennsylvania cow’s milk, so our connection to Pennsylvania agriculture already runs deep. These scholarships are a great way to amplify that connection and support the future of the industry.”
Congratulations to this year’s scholarship recipients:
Jordan Anderson is a freshman studying agriculture communications at the University of Wyoming. Jordan is the daughter of Donald and Angela Anderson of Centre Hall, Centre County. Growing up on a small farmette in Central Pennsylvania, Jordan has experience making health and reproductive decisions for her family’s heifers. After developing a passion for media, journalism and photography, Jordan hopes to find a career telling the story of Pennsylvania agriculture through ag communications.
“I’m humbled and honored to receive this financial award and appreciate the support of my educational career. I am proud to be a part of an industry of hard-working and supportive people. This support will help me in my career as I strive to advocate for the dairy industry and agriculture through the media.” –Jordan Anderson
Glenn Barnes is a freshman studying agricultural engineering at SUNY Cobleskill. Glenn is the son of Jeffery and Pamela Barnes of Lawrenceville, Tioga County. With 10 years of experience working on his family’s dairy farm, Glenn has always been interested in how technology can improve quality, increase productivity and enhance sustainability in the agriculture industry. His goal is to use his engineering degree to drive innovation and stay involved in the production side of the industry on his family’s dairy operation.
“This scholarship enables me to concentrate on my studies, boosting my chances of remaining in school and graduating on time. This scholarship will make a significant impact on my educational experience. A scholarship assists by allowing me to be more selective in how I use my leisure time. Service learning, volunteer activities, and internships will allow me to make the most of my college experience.” –Glenn Barnes
Landis Crawford is a sophomore studying biological engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. Landis is the daughter of Jason Crawford and Tracey Dengler-Crawford of Saegertown, Crawford County. With an active role on her family’s dairy farm, Landis has experience caring for livestock and making value-added products like cheese and ice cream. After learning about field run-off, she became passionate about biological engineering from a young age. Her goal is to one day assist farmers with manure management, crop planning, and soil health while addressing solutions for milk house waste-water systems.
“The recognition of the Dairy Excellence Foundation, the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association, and Tröegs Independent Brewing through the Student Leader Scholarship Program really means a lot to me. The support of these organizations fuels my passion to make positive change in both my agricultural community and the Pennsylvania dairy industry at large. Your generosity is increasing the attainability of my dreams by reducing the monetary strain that a college degree incurs. With that I am ever so appreciative and thankful to be selected as a scholarship recipient.” –Landis Crawford
Mikayla Davis is a senior studying agribusiness management at The Pennsylvania State University – World Campus. Mikayla is the daughter of Mike and Angie Davis of Leesport, Berks County. After growing up on a registered Holstein dairy farm, Mikayla has vast experience caring for animals. As the PA State Dairy Princess, she communicates with the general public about how food gets from the farm to the table. She hopes to one day be a voice for dairy farmers and continue teaching consumers about agriculture.
“I am honored to receive this scholarship to help further my career and knowledge within agriculture. Thanks to the Dairy Excellence Foundation and its partners, I will be able to share my love and passion for the dairy industry to consumers. The dairy industry has been such an important aspect of my life and one day I will be able to use my knowledge to give back to the agricultural community.” –Mikayla Davis
Jessica Herr is a sophomore studying agricultural sciences at The Pennsylvania State University – Berks. Jessica is the daughter of Eric and Melissa Herr of Lancaster, Lancaster County. With deep roots in the dairy industry and hands-on experience working on her family’s dairy farm, Jessica was active in the FFA program throughout high school and took on many leadership roles. Her goal is to pursue a career in agriculture communications where she can help share the story of the Pennsylvania dairy industry.
“To be awarded this scholarship is nothing short of an honor. I am incredibly grateful for the Dairy Excellence Foundation and their partners for their willingness to invest in both in my education and my future career within the agricultural industry. With their support, I am able to work towards my goal of focusing on my studies and graduating college debt free.” –Jessica Herr
Victoria Longenecker is a junior studying biological engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. Victoria is the daughter of Doug and Yvette Longenecker of Williamsburg, Blair County. Growing up on her family’s 2,000-cow dairy farm, Victoria has experience milking cows and feeding calves. She has been active in Dairy 4-H, FFA, Dairy Princess Program, and more. As a biological engineering major, Victoria hopes to be involved in creating and implementing systems that have a positive effect on dairy farmers.
“It is very encouraging to know that the ag industry is a strong and helpful community when it comes to pursuing a career in agriculture. This scholarship will take some of the weight off my shoulders when it comes to tuition for my last couple years left at Penn State. Receiving this will also allow me to focus on growing my knowledge of environmental systems that have and will affect farmers in a positive way.” –Victoria Longenecker
Nika Rice is a junior studying animal science with a dairy management concentration at Cornell University. Nika is the daughter of Dave and Terry Rice of Williamsburg, Blair County. Growing up on her family’s dairy farm, she began turning cheese wheels each week in their creamery and marketing cheese at local farmers’ markets. With a passion for creating food that connects people, she hopes to find a career where she can utilize the abilities of cows to use byproducts humans call waste and make nutritious dairy products.
“I am so honored to receive the Student Leadership Scholarship. I am inspired to see these agricultural organizations come together to give back to the future of the industry. I feel supported and encouraged to continue the path of educating myself on how to feed the world at Cornell University.” –Nika Rice
George Sebright is a senior studying dairy science at Virginia Tech. George is the son of Robby and Jayne Sebright of East Berlin, Adams County. With an active role on his family’s dairy operation, George has in-depth experience with herd health management, sire selection, breeding, nutrition, milking and more. His passion for dairy cattle genetics has led to active roles within breed association events, dairy judging and showmanship. His goal is to find a career in the A.I industry while staying actively involved in his family’s dairy operation.
“It is a great honor to receive this financial award in support of my education. I would like to thank everyone involved in making this scholarship happen. This award will help me in my educational career by being able to better balance my work schedule and studies, allowing me to better absorb the knowledge I learn in my final year at Virginia Tech.” –George Sebright
Abby Stoltzfus is a junior studying wildlife and fisheries at The Pennsylvania State University. Abby is the daughter of Duane and Andrea Stoltzfus of Berlin, Somerset County. From a young age, she has had an active role with raising calves and milking treated cows on her family’s dairy farm. Abby is passionate about conservation and ways farmers can improve the environment.
“I am very grateful to be named one of the Student Leader Scholarship recipients. Being a leader is something I’ve always strived to be in my community. I’ve always wanted to make a name for myself in the dairy industry by leading by example, so being awarded this scholarship puts me one step closer to achieving my dream of a career in the dairy industry, doing what I love, and hopefully, changing the world.” –Abby Stoltzfus
Kara Stultz is a senior studying animal science at The Pennsylvania State University. Kara is the daughter of Rob and Tammy Stultz of Williamsburg, Blair County. After growing up on her family’s fourth-generation dairy farm, she has witnessed the different aspects that make up a successful dairy operation. She has experience with calf management and raising heifers and has held leadership roles in the Dairy Princess Program, Dairy Science Club, and more. Her goal is to make a lasting and worthwhile mark on the dairy industry in years to come.
“I am thankful and grateful for the Dairy Excellence Foundation, Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association, and Tröegs Independent Brewing for their generosity in supporting the future agriculture professionals through this scholarship. They allow myself and others to further our education and hands-on knowledge to continue to improve our beloved agriculture industry.”
Visit www.centerfordairyexcellence.org/scholarships to learn more about the Student Leader Scholarship program and how to support the scholarship fund. Contact Michelle Shearer at email@example.com or 570-768-8316 with questions.
–Emily Barge, Center for Dairy Excellence