The Craig Award is a new scholarship founded by Jon and Lynn Ogryzlo in memory of their late son, Craig Persia Ogryzlo. The award will be based on successful research outcomes on a collaboration project between the student, Niagara College’s Research and Innovation Department, and an industry or community partner.   Lynn is a food and wine author and columnist, and Jon is Niagara College’s Dean of Food and Wine Sciences.

“I love this project because it financially supports a student’s academic efforts while offering them a creative experience in the business of agriculture,” said Lynn Ogryzlo. “This new activity will draw positive attention to Niagara agriculture and inspire Niagara College students to become ambassadors of the  region’s home-grown richness.”

The $12,000 gift from the Ogryzlo family will be endowed and matched by Ontario Trust for Student Support, and will generate a $1,000 annual award at current interest rates.  The donation is counted towards the $16.5 million goal for the Niagara College Foundation’s Building Futures Campaign, which is raising money for scholarships and bursaries, applied research, and buildings, equipment and learning resources.

Agricultural innovation is happening in Niagara through research projects that range from a new ice wine project, cabernet and chardonnay curd and caramel-coated fresh apples to Red Fyfe wheat pasta.

The scholarship was made possible through the internationally acclaimed, Canadian best-selling cookbook Niagara Cooks. Authored by Lynn and photographed by Jon, the successful sales through farm and independent retail outlets allowed them to create a fund for this scholarship. Niagara Cooks is a cookbook that is filled with quick and easy recipes that will whet your appetite for the lighter flavour of fresh, local foods, along with sources for obtaining local ingredients, and wine pairings that make it easy to create your own local meals to share with family and friends.

“We are honoured that the Ogryzlo family has chosen to honour their son’s memory by establishing a research scholarship for Niagara College students,” said Marti Jurmain, Niagara College’s Director of Research and Innovation. “The Craig Award will provide an opportunity for students to participate in applied research activities that will help in the advancement of Niagara wine and culinary industries.”

Through its applied research department – Niagara Research – Niagara College partners with businesses and community agencies to conduct applied research projects that model or simulate solutions, develop and test prototypes, adopt new technologies and knowledge, develop and evaluate new or improved products, processes or solutions to community issues.

With 8,000 full-time students, Niagara College offers more than 90 diploma, baccalaureate degrees and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Niagara Falls and St. Catharines. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, applied health and community safety, and the College is home to the globally-recognized Niagara Culinary Institute and Niagara College Teaching Winery. In 2008, Niagara College launched a $90 million campus redevelopment project, which is scheduled for completion in 2011.


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