Seven young people within the Pennsylvania dairy industry have been recognized as Student Leader Scholars and will receive a $3,000 scholarship to support their 2015-2016 academic studies. Five of these scholarships are generously supported by the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association, while the other two will be funded by the Center for Dairy Excellence Foundation of Pennsylvania.
The scholarships provide recognition, encouragement and financial assistance to outstanding students enrolled in academic programs that support the dairy industry. Funds for the scholarships are made possible through the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association and through contributions made to the Center for Dairy Excellence Foundation’s scholarship fund.
“We were excited to have thirty-four applicants within this year’s scholarship pool,” said John Frey, executive director of the Center for Dairy Excellence Foundation of Pennsylvania. “All of the applicants demonstrated tremendous leadership and character, with the seven individuals chosen as this year’s recipients rising to the top in the areas of academics, extra-curricular activities, and in their interest in the dairy industry.”
“In looking over the applicants, it is obvious our industry has a very bright future here in Pennsylvania,” said David Smith, executive director of the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association. “We are pleased to join the Center Foundation in supporting this program and are excited about what these applications demonstrate in dairy’s next generation.”
The recipients of the scholarship include:
Danielle Delp, who is a sophomore studying biology and pre-veterinary medicine at Messiah College. Danielle is the daughter of Durrell and Dawn Delp from Williamsburg, Blair County. She assists on the family’s 150-cow dairy, Delside Farm, and wants to one day practice as a large animal veterinarian serving Pennsylvania dairy farms.
Amber Gabel, who is a junior studying animal science at the Pennsylvania State University. Amber is the daughter of Robert and Jennifer Gabel from Newport, Perry County, and has been very active in youth and college-level dairy activities. She hopes to pursue a career working in genetics before one day taking over and expanding the family’s dairy operation.
Simon Itle, who is a junior studying food science at the Pennsylvania State University. Simon is the son of Dan and Machelle Itle from Loretto in Cambria County. He is from a dairy farm and processing operation called Vale Wood farms. He works at the Penn State Dairy Barns and hopes to one day serve as the plant manager in his family’s dairy processing operation.
Rebecca Klopp, a senior studying animal science at the Pennsylvania State University and the daughter of Richard and Denise Klopp in Bethel, Berks County. Rebecca is very active in the Penn State Dairy Science Club and is interested in pursuing her master’s degree in animal science and dairy nutrition before working for a dairy nutrition company in Pennsylvania.
Kyle Sollenberger, who is a senior pursuing animal science at the Pennsylvania State University and the son of David and Holly Sollenberger in Spring City, Chester County. The Sollenbergers own a small dairy operation called French Creek Farm, and Kyle has been very active in both 4-H and the Penn State Dairy Science Club. After college, he hopes to work in either dairy genetics or nutrition.
Abby Sterner, who was this year’s Freshman Award winner. Abby is a freshman at Delaware Valley College and is the daughter of Karen and Jonathan Sterner. She is active in the Montgomery County 4-H Dairy Club and hopes to one day have her own dairy farm. She also would like to work in the dairy nutrition industry.
Collin Stoltzfus, a senior at the Pennsylvania State University studying BioRenewable Systems with an Agricultural Systems Management (ASM) option, who is the son of Donald and Joanne Stoltzfus from Berlin, Somerset County. Collin is the third generation at Pennwood Holsteins and owns 36 head of his own cattle. He wants to one day work for a large machinery company in mechanics and one day operating his own dairy and crop farm operation.
Consideration for this scholarship was given to Pennsylvania residents who are full-time undergraduate students planning to enroll or are currently enrolled in a qualifying field of study such as animal science, agriculture marketing and business, nutrition, food science, agricultural and extension education, agri-business management, agricultural engineering or related fields.
Selection of the scholarship winners was based on the completed application within the following criteria: academic performance; apparent commitment to a career related to the dairy industry; evidence of leadership, character and integrity; and application compliance.