Four students in the University of Idaho College of Agricultural and Life Sciences have earned $20,000 scholarships through the Chobani Scholars program.  All four of those students, who are new to CALS hail from the Magic Valley area.  The scholarships are for Idaho students with family connections to dairy farming and who intend to pursue a career in the dairy farming industry.  In addition to the scholarship, the Chobani Scholars will also have an opportunity to intern with Chobani during their college careers.


In 2022, Chobani expanded the program by investing additional funds for diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) training and education and put a greater focus on supporting historically underserved students.


“We launched the Chobani Scholars program to give talented, young people who are passionate about dairy and agriculture the skills they need to thrive in the industry and then expanded the program earlier this year to place a greater focus on DEI and food science,” said Mark Broadhurst, senior vice president of communications and impact at Chobani. “Four years in, we couldn’t be prouder of the pipeline of talent we’ve seen come into the program and look forward to creating opportunities for employment at Chobani among our qualified scholars.”


Members of the 4th class of Chobani Scholars plan to major in agricultural economics and animal and veterinary science degrees.  University officials add the four winners all says they are proud of their dairy upbringing and are eager to gain knowledge at U of I to help their family operations and the broader dairy industry. Some of them plan to eventually raise their own children on a family dairy.


The Chobani Scholars program was established at U of I in 2018.


College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Dean Michael Parrella hopes the success of Chobani Scholars will spur other Idaho businesses and entities to establish similar agricultural scholarship programs. Such scholarships further U of I’s mission as a land-grant institution to emphasize teaching of practical sciences, including agriculture.


“The ultimate goal of a land-grant university is to train students who pay that forward by staying in Idaho and contributing to the agricultural industry,” Parrella said. “The Chobani Scholars program is a model for that, supporting creative, young students from the Magic Valley with an interest in agriculture.” 


Chobani prioritizes philanthropic causes such as working to eradicate child hunger, supporting immigrants, refugees and underrepresented people, honoring veterans and protecting the planet. 


About the 2022 Chobani Scholars 

  • Averee Silva graduated from Jerome High School and plans to major in pre-veterinary science: “I want a career in agriculture because when I was going out to work with my dad, I was able to see how he truly loves his cows and how the dairymen really, truly do care for their cows. I want to be an advocate and an educator for the next generation for the dairy industry.” 


  • Hayden Alves graduated from Filer High School and plans to pursue a degree in agribusiness: “I’ve always wanted to have my own dairy with my own family and teach my kids about dairy. My dad always told me, ‘You won’t work a day in your life if you love what you do.’ Every morning I enjoy getting up at 4:30 a.m. or 5 a.m. and going to school right after I’ve been on the dairy and as soon as I get home, I’m right back on the dairy helping my dad, making sure the cows look good – things like that.” 


  • Brianna Leon graduated from Minico Senior High School in Rupert and plans to major in pre-veterinary science: “My father migrated from Mexico 32 years ago and was only able to obtain an elementary education. My mother, being a child herself, had to actively care for her siblings. My parents did not have the resources to attain the power of a college education, and my hopes are to achieve those successes by receiving this scholarship.” 


  • Adyson Perkes graduated from Richfield High School and plans to major in pre-veterinary science: “I’ve always felt that I have a sort of calling to be a veterinarian, and I am so passionate about that calling. I have a love for the land and the animals that make up my home, and that is why I am such an advocate for agriculture and why I want a career in agriculture.” 


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