Bolstering the dairy industry, the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) recently announced a pivotal investment. The association will be supporting seven current and future dairy industry professionals as it invested $19,000 in scholarship funds this year.
“Building a strong future for the dairy processing industry requires fresh, energetic, diverse perspectives. Thanks to the generosity of our members, WCMA is thrilled to once again offer these awards to a group of highly deserving emerging leaders,” said Executive Director John Umhoefer.
Each year, WCMA supports the dairy industry’s next generation through these scholarship awards. To further boost these thought-leaders, the association has given dairy processors and their family members the eligibility to apply for the WCMA Myron P. “Mike” Dean Cheese Industry Student Scholarship. Over 25 years, noted the release, WCMA has awarded these $3,000 scholarships to 44 students. Winners of the 2022 Mike Dean Cheese Industry Student Scholarships are Bailee Aisenbrey and Jamie Feldmann.
In addition to the Mike Dean scholarship, suppliers to the dairy industry and their family members can earn the WCMA Supplier Student Scholarship. In total, 57 of these scholarships have been awarded over 22 years since the scholarship began in 1999. The 58th, 59th, and 60th recipients of the WCMA Cheese Industry Supplier Student Scholarship are Jenna Jakel, Stephanie Kraemer, and Jack Pluta.
Since 2021, WCMA has also selected two students to receive the Brian Eggebrecht Student Scholarship supporting skilled trades in the dairy industry, worth $2,000 each. This award, named in honor of Championship Cheese Contest Chairman and generous donor Brian Eggebrecht, is open to students attending any technical school in Wisconsin or high school students registered to attend a Wisconsin technical school. The winners of the 2022 Brian Eggebrecht Student Scholarship are Bryce Gustafson and Xiapor Lor.
These funds wouldn’t be possible without the support of our industry. The association noted that funds for WCMA’s scholarship program come from the annual Championship Cheese Auction, where gold medal cheeses from WCMA’s Championship Cheese Contests are sold to the highest bidders. The next auction will be held during CheeseExpo, scheduled for April 12–14, 2022 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
For more information on these winners, click here.
With our industry continuing to learn and grow, it is more imperative than ever to foster education in our next generation, so keep checking back as we report on the latest.