by Terry Rogers
In August, Mountaire Farms, the country’s sixth largest chicken producer, awarded $70,000 in scholarships to students in Delaware and North Carolina. The scholarships, which were $2,500 each, are provided to help children and grandchildren of employees pay for college. Suhey Matamoros of Lincoln was one of the recipients this year.
“I am attending the University of Delaware majoring in Elementary Education and English as a second Language with a minor in Spanish,” Matamoros said. “I hope to stay here in Delaware after I graduate. My plan is to get my master’s degree from Delaware and teach in this state. I know that a lot of schools in Delaware need bilingual teachers so I would like to fulfill that need for a school in this state.”
Matamoros, who graduated from the Early College High School at Delaware State College, learned of the scholarship because her father Will is a Second Processing Superintendent at the Mountaire plant in Selbyville. She is in her second year at the University of Delaware, returning to school in early August in order to complete RA training. Matamoros said that she will hold three different jobs during the school year in order to cover the cost of her education and living expenses.
At the presentation of the awards, the keynote speaker was Daniel Reifenstein, a participant in Mountaire’s Management Trainee program who served as an intern with the company. The Management Trainee program accepts recent college graduates and other candidates for leadership roles, exposing them to every aspect of the business during a 500-week training program.
“We are proud of this program because it embraces everything that we care about – our employees, our growers, our grain producers and their families,” Phillip Pylar, President of Mountaire Farms, said. “And these students have all demonstrated a commitment to their education, and to their communities, which we believe should be celebrated.”
Matamoros encourages children and grandchildren of Mountaire to apply for the scholarship.
“My advice is to be honest,” Matamoros said. “When I first heard of the scholarship, I was worried I didn’t have enough volunteer hours or the things I did in the community were not enough. I was totally honest and described everything I did in the community. I think that was why I received the award.”
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