HMTCA students honored

Rachel McKenna Opbroek

Rachel McKenna Opbroek

Northwestern State University students Rachel McKenna Opbroek of Shreveport and K’Una Woods of Alexandria were named recipients of scholarships awarded by the Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation.  The two are seeking degree in NSU’s hospitality management, tourism and culinary arts program and were recognized at the 2015 Five Star Futures Gala on Aug. 8 at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside. Opbroek is an entering freshman majoring in HMT who completed the Louisiana Restaurant Association ProStart program while a student at Caddo Magnet High School.

K’Una Woods

LRAEF supports the educational efforts of students on a path to a career in the culinary or hospitality industry and will award $70,000 to 33 students as part of the 2015 scholarship cycle. Scholarship awards are merit-based and presented to full-time students seeking a career in the restaurant, food service, tourism or hospitality industry.  LRAEF Program Manager Jennifer Jeansonne is a Natchitoches native and NSU alumna.

“Thank you to Jennifer Jeansonne, program manager, with Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation for her seeing the potential in our students,” said Landon Amberg, assistant professor in NSU’s HMT program.  “Ke’Una and Rachel are great choices by the LRAEF for scholarships.  They are representing the Northwestern State University HMT program for the first time as LRAEF scholarship recipients since the program was established in 1994.”

The LRAEF non-profit organization founded in 1995 to enhance the industry’s service to the public through education, community engagement and promotion of career opportunities. He LRAEF Scholarship Fund was created to provide an opportunity to further educate culinary/hospitality students, industry employees and educators by giving financial support via scholarship funds with hopes that the recipients select the culinary and/or hospitality fields as a career choice or continue to work in the industry.

This fund allows recipients access to post secondary education in the culinary and/or hospitality fields or special certificate programs for educators or industry professionals. The scholarships are awarded for one time financial assistance.  The LRAEF Board of Directors, through its Scholarship Fund, has awarded over $270,000 in scholarships to Louisiana students to further their post-secondary culinary educations.

NSU’s HMT program is housed under the university’s School of Business in the College of Business and Technology.  For information on programming, e-mail Amberg at