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Local High School Students Awarded Scholarships from Taste of Buffalo and Tops Markets

Tue, Jun 13th 2023 08:00 am

June 13, 2023, BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Taste of Buffalo presented by Tops has announced recipients of five scholarships awarded to Western New York-area high school seniors aspiring to careers in the Foodservice and Hospitality industries. Each of the students below will receive a $1,000 scholarship to be applied toward room and board, books, or fees.

Jessica Bizub, a senior at Maryvale High School, will attend Cornell University’s Nolan School of Hotel Administration to obtain a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management.

Valentina Krajacic, a senior at Sacred Heart Academy, will study Hospitality/Luxury Operations at Niagara University.

Alanna Littleton, a senior at Emerson School of Hospitality, is enrolled in the Baking and Pastry Arts Program at Niagara County Community College.

Lena “Wassy” Stevens completed the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Management program at the LoGuidice Educational Center and is a senior at Gowanda Central School. She will study baking and pastry arts at Niagara County Community College.

New this year, a fifth $1,000 scholarship will be presented by the Taste in partnership with Tops Friendly Markets. It was made available to a local student pursuing a degree in Culinary Arts or Culinary Arts Management. The 2023 recipient is Cierra Schwarz, a senior at Frontier Senior High School, who will attend Kent State University to major in dietetics/nutrition and public health. Click here to view all the winners.

Congratulations to these five impressive young women who have a passion for food, culinary arts and hospitality,” shared Elizabeth Mamot, 2023 Taste of Buffalo Chair. “The Taste of Buffalo is passionate about giving back to our community and inspiring the next generation. These students are the future of our industry!”

“It is inspiring to see so many young adults pursue degrees in this ever-evolving industry,” said John Persons, president, Tops Friendly Markets. “We know with their ambition and dedication, this scholarship will help provide the tools needed to realize their dreams.”

About the Taste The Taste of Buffalo presented by Tops is the nation’s largest two-day food festival. The 40th annual Taste will take place on July 8 and 9, 2023 along Delaware Avenue in downtown Buffalo. Named winner of USA Today’s 2023 10Best Reader’s Choice Travel Awards for “Best City Food Festival,” the Taste is a not-for-profit organization with more than 1,000 volunteers helping to put on the annual event. More than $575,000 has been raised at the festival for local charities in addition to scholarships awarded annually to local high school seniors pursuing a culinary or hospitality- related degree. For more information visit tasteofbuffalo.com and find us on Facebook and Instagram.

About Tops Friendly Markets Based in Williamsville, NY, Tops Markets currently operates 149 grocery stores in New York, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, including five that are run by franchisees. As the largest private, for- profit employer in Western New York, with over 14,000 associates, the company is dedicated to providing sustainably sourced, high-quality products, while helping its communities flourish via support for programs that eradicate hunger and disease, educate youth and reduce environmental waste and energy consumption. For more information, visit www.topsmarkets.com.