New Jersey Based Pinnacle Foods Awards Mercer County Community College Students with Culinary Scholarships for 2011-2012 School Year

PARSIPPANY, NJ (October 27, 2011) – Pinnacle Foods Group LLC and Mercer County Community College (MCCC) today announced the recipients of the 2011-2011 Pinnacle Foods Chef Jacket Partnership Scholarships.  At an MCCC Recognition Ceremony, Amber Hinshaw of Hightstown, NJ was named the recipient of Pinnacle Foods’ Duncan Hines® scholarship for excellence in the pastry arts; while Ray Montero of Trenton, NJ was awarded Pinnacle Foods’ Vlasic® scholarship for excellence in general culinary arts. Through an ongoing partnership with MCCC, the Pinnacle Foods Chef Jacket Partnership encourages the scholarly exploration of the culinary field.

This is the first year of Pinnacle Foods’ Chef Jacket Partnership with MCCC. In addition to scholarship support to students, Corporate Pastry Chef, Joseph DiPaolo Jr. CEPC, CHE organized a culinary immersion day for students and professional chefs. Together, teams ideated and innovated new ideas and recipes, giving hands-on corporate Research and Development experience to MCCC students.

“We believe in developing leaders at all levels to enhance our teams and strengthen our business,” said Chef DiPaolo. “The immersion of MCCC culinary students with our professional chefs is truly a mutually beneficial relationship and learning experience for all.”

Now with three state-of-the-art teaching kitchens, MCCC’s programs include: an A.S. program in Culinology, one of ten such majors in the nation to combine science principles and culinary arts; and four A.A.S. degrees in: Culinary Arts, Chef Apprenticeship, Chef Apprenticeship Pastry, and Hotel, Restaurant and Institution Management.  Credit certificate programs include Catering Management, Professional Cooking and Professional Baking.

“Companies like Pinnacle Foods are making education a reality for some of our most deserving students,” said Hospitality Programs Coordinator, Douglas Fee. “We are very appreciative of their generosity.”

The scholarship recipients will each receive custom Chef Jackets from Pinnacle Foods and a $1,000.00 scholarship for the 2011-2012 school year. The scholarships cover the cost of students’ chef whites, which are embossed with the donor’s logo and the student’s name, and also are used for other college expenses.  Amber Hinshaw, Pinnacle’s Duncan Hines recipient is a high achieving  Culinology student and an officer with MCCC’s chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society and will finish her degree in the spring.  She plans to transfer to a four-year college to earn her bachelor’s degree in Food Science.  Pinnacle’s Vlasic recipient is Ray Montero, an adult returning student.  Originally in the retail field, he is now pursuing his true passion, cooking, and will earn dual degrees in Chef Apprenticeship and Chef Apprenticeship Pastry. 

“Cooking runs in the family,” said Montero. His grandfather owned a restaurant and he currently works with his uncle, who has a catering business. Montero plans to continue the family tradition.


About Pinnacle Foods Group LLC
Millions of times a day in more than 85% of American households, consumers reach for Pinnacle Foods brands. We are a leading producer, marketer and distributor of high-quality branded food products, which have been trusted household names for decades. Headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, our business employs more than 4,300 people in North America. We are a leader in the shelf stable and frozen foods segments and our brands hold the #1 or #2 market position in 8 out of 12 major category segments in which they compete. Our Duncan Hines Grocery Division manages brands such as Duncan Hines® baking mixes and frostings, Vlasic® pickles, peppers, and relish, Mrs. Butterworth’s® and Log Cabin® syrups, Armour® canned meats, Nalley® and Brooks® chili and chili ingredients, and Open Pit® barbecue sauces. Our Birds Eye Frozen Division manages brands such as Birds Eye®, Birds Eye Steam fresh®, C&W®, McKenzie’s®, and Fresh like® vegetables, Birds Eye Voila!® meals, Aunt Jemima® frozen breakfasts, Swanson® and Hungry-Man® dinners and entrees, Van de Kamp’s® and Mrs. Paul’s® seafood, Lender’s® bagels and Celeste® frozen pizza. Our Specialty Foods Division manages Tim’s Cascade Snacks®, Hawaiian™ Kettle Style Potato Chips, Snyder of Berlin® and Husman’s® in addition to our food service and private label businesses. Further information is available at