Kansas State University Global Campus offers new scholarship for food science students
Monday, April 15, 2019
MANHATTAN — The Nathan and Becky Smit Food Innovation Scholarship, a $1,000 renewable award for Kansas State University online undergraduate food science students, will be offered for the first time in fall 2019.
Made possible by the generosity of Nathan and Becky Smit, the scholarship aims to provide financial support for distance students studying food science. Nathan Smit is a 2008 graduate of Kansas State University's distance program in food science. He earned his bachelor's degree and used it to quickly climb the corporate ladder at Hormel Foods Corporation.
Smit said the scholarship he received as a student eased financial stress as he juggled his education with full-time work at Hormel.
"There aren't a lot of scholarships for distance students, so I really appreciated it," Smit said. "My job is about innovation every day, so I want to help adult students who want to make change in the world."
In his current role of senior innovations manager, Smit leads a product development team that creates new food products for Hormel. He has introduced more than 30 new products in his career, including Skippy P.B. Bites and Skippy P.B. & Jelly Minis, and holds two patents on food products and processes.
In 2017, Smit received the Learner Recognition Award from the National University Technology Network, which honors outstanding accomplishments by graduates who earned their degrees through distance education.
Melinda Sinn, alumni and external relations coordinator for K-State Global Campus, said the generosity of families such as the Smits is pivotal to student success.
"It's so wonderful to see how education can impact the lives of students for the better," Sinn said. "Nathan's story is a perfect example of that, and we're so honored he has chosen to pay it forward and help make the dreams of a new generation of students come true."
Applications for the fall 2019 semester are accepted from April 15-June 1.