Scholarships Available for Young Professionals at 2024 Dairy Summit, Expanded Programming and Career Development Workshop

The Young Dairy Professionals Scholarship Is Available for Individuals Between the Ages of 18-30

The 2024 Pennsylvania Dairy Summit, which will be held on February 7 and 8, 2024 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, will help dairy producers and young professionals unlock their potential through dynamic sessions, networking opportunities, and a new career development workshop specifically for young dairy professionals. To kick off the Dairy Summit on Tuesday, February 6 at 5 p.m., the Young Dairy Professionals Reception will be held at the Lancaster Wyndham Resort and Convention Center. Any young dairy professionals between the ages of 18 and 30 are encouraged to apply for a scholarship.

Young Dairy Professionals Scholarship recipients will receive a discounted rate of $50 to attend the full Dairy Summit, a complimentary hotel room, access to the Young Professionals Opening Night Reception, access to the new, in-depth Young Dairy Professionals Career Development Workshop, and the opportunity to talk one-on-one with industry professionals within their chosen areas of interest.

“Whether you work on a dairy farm or are enrolled in an agricultural degree program at a college or trade school, we encourage you to apply for this scholarship opportunity. It’s a great way to expand your network, hear from a panel of young dairy professionals who are currently working in the industry, and take your skills and strengths to the next level through our first-ever career development workshop,” said Michelle Shearer, Workforce Development Manager at the Center for Dairy Excellence.

At the opening night Young Dairy Professionals Reception, scholarship recipients will hear from a panel of young professionals who will share their wide range of experiences and career advice in the dairy industry. Each panelist is a previous Student Leader Scholarship recipient. The panel will include:

  • Josh Brubaker, partner at Brubaker Farms LLC in Lancaster County, PA. In December of 2017 after coming home from college, Josh began working full time on his family farm. In 2020, he took the opportunity to buy-in and join his dad, Mike, and uncle, Tony, as a managing partner at Brubaker Farms LLC. At Brubaker Farms, Josh focuses a majority of his time towards overseeing the dairy nutrition, rentals and parts of the herd management. He also helps manage the organization of data coming from the farm to enhance decision making abilities for employees and owners. Josh attained his B.S. in Ag Business Management with a specialization in Dairy Science from Penn State University.
  • Nicole Guise, Agriculture Education Teacher at Millville Area Jr/Sr High School in Columbia County, PA. Nicole started the Agriculture Education program and FFA chapter at Millville three years ago and has doubled participation in the Agriculture Program over the last three years. She teaches courses in all aspects of agriculture, including animal science, horticulture, food science, environmental science, and agriculture mechanics. Nicole’s connection to the dairy industry includes her involvement with her family’s dairy herds, Buttonwood Farms and Bentz-Hollow Farm, and her love for coaching dairy judging teams. She holds a B.S. in Agricultural and Extension Education from The Pennsylvania State University and Schreyer Honors College.

“The Dairy Summit provided me an opportunity to meet and network with many industry professionals, as well as expand some of my knowledge base on topics necessary to the dairy industry. It was one of the most engaging and interactive conferences I’ve been to yet, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to be able to attend it as a young dairy professional,” said Blaine Walizer of Dotterer Dairy, a previous scholarship recipient.

In addition, Young Dairy Professionals Scholarship recipients will participate in a Career Development Workshop on Wednesday afternoon, February 7, during the Dairy Summit led by Jill Smith of Cornerstone HR & Management Consulting. Students will gain in-depth, real-world career development training using the Predictive Index work style strength assessment tool. Through dynamic instruction and activities specifically designed for young professionals, attendees will learn to understand their strengths, their challenges, and how to use this information to shape how they pursue future job opportunities and relate to others in the workplace.

“We’re excited to offer scholarship recipients with an additional learning opportunity at this year’s Dairy Summit. During the Career Development Workshop for young professionals, you will learn about your unique personality strengths, how you naturally communicate, solve problems and address conflict, and how you can leverage your strengths both in the workplace and throughout job searches,” Shearer added. “Our workshop leader will share resume-writing tips, how to project confidence in an interview, and strategies for how to best connect with individuals who have differing work styles. This is an excellent opportunity for young dairy professionals to gain skills they can immediately apply in the workplace, in the job search process, and in other professional settings.”

Young professionals who receive the scholarship will network with dairy professionals of all ages. Scholarship applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 30 as of February 1, 2024. They must be a resident of Pennsylvania or enrolled in an agricultural program at a Pennsylvania-based college or university. They must also meet one of the following categories:

  • Operate or work on a dairy farm OR
  • Be enrolled in an agricultural degree program at college or trade school OR
  • Be enrolled in an agriculture program at a high school OR
  • Teach agriculture at a high school, college, or university

Applicants must also agree to pay the discounted $50 registration fee that is awarded to scholarship recipients. Checks should be made payable to “Pennsylvania Dairy Summit.”

To apply for a Young Dairy Professionals scholarship, applications must be submitted by January 16, 2024. Visit and click on “Young Professionals” on the top right. Contact Michelle Shearer at or call 570-768-8316 with questions.

The Dairy Summit is an annual event hosted by the Professional Dairy Managers of Pennsylvania and Center for Dairy Excellence.