Chartwells K12 Continues to Empower Employees to Advance their Careers; Awards 2022 Associate Scholarships


Ongoing training and educational opportunities reinforce Chartwells’ continued commitment to their School Lunch Heroes

Chartwells K12, a provider of innovative dining programs that employs more than 16,000 School Lunch Heroes across the country, is continuing their commitment to helping advance associates’ educational and career opportunities. Today, Chartwells, in partnership with DeVry University, announced their 2022 scholarship recipients who will start their academic journeys toward earning a degree while remaining committed to the students and communities they serve.

In year three of the scholarship program, Nicole Beeney, Field Supervisor, East China School District, Michigan, received a full scholarship to earn an Associate Degree in Business. Christina Thompson, Director of Dining Services, Spartanburg School District 1, South Carolina; Lacey Zaruba, Cafeteria Manager, Dayton ISD, Texas; and Monique Patterson, Food Unit Lead, Kingman Unified School District, Arizona, were awarded partial scholarships.

“Hearing from our hardworking School Lunch Heroes about their desire to gain new skills and further their education is incredibly inspiring. It only reinforces Chartwells’ commitment to invest in the people who invest so much of themselves in their students and communities,” said Belinda Oakley, CEO at Chartwells K12. “I’m so proud of this year’s recipients and I can’t wait to see what they accomplish next.”

Chartwells launched the scholarship program with DeVry University in 2019 to assist their associates who are required by the USDA to hold an advanced degree for leadership positions in larger school districts. They have now awarded 12 scholarships, and three of those recipients are now college graduates: Tammy Pittsley, Director of Dining Services at Syracuse Academy of Science in New York; Robert Michelon, Operations Controller at Florence School District 1 in South Carolina; and TaWanda Wright, Assistant Director of Dining Services at East St. Louis School District in Illinois.

“[The scholarship program] allowed me to have a full-time career and be a full-time parent to my kids,” said Pittsley. “I was able to achieve my dreams and go to college. I am so thankful to Chartwells for giving me the opportunity to absolutely change my life.” To hear more from Chartwells’ scholarship recipients and what the experience meant to them, watch video testimonials here.

As part of their ongoing investment to inspire and empower their workforce, Chartwells continues to provide training, development, and education programs for their 16,000 associates across 4,500 schools. Earlier this year, they launched a fully funded foundational education benefit with Guild Education to create even more opportunities for their associates to broaden their professional skills and continue their education.

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