Names of Note: Harvest Luncheon comes through again for Modesto JC ag students

The annual Harvest Luncheon raised about $20,000 in scholarship money for Modesto Junior College agriculture students.

About 500 people turned out Friday in the big pavilion on the West Campus for the usual meal of Mapes Ranch tri-tip, beans and more.

The Modesto Chamber of Commerce put on the luncheon with the MJC Agriculture and Environmental Sciences Department and numerous sponsors.

Student speakers Julia Orlando and Ryder Nielsen talked about the value of the school. Keynote speaker Holly King, chairwoman of the Almond Board of California, spoke of its efforts to be environmentally friendly.

The luncheon has raised more than $230,000 for about 450 ag students since 1956. The scholarship fund was renamed in 1996 for Henry Voss and Clare Berryhill, local products who led the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

Tastes of the Valley

Next up for supporters of ag education is the 17th annual Tastes of the Valley on Oct. 3 at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds in Turlock. It will raise money for the Stanislaus State University Agriculture Program and the Friends of the Fair Foundation.

The event features wine, beer and cheese from the region as well as small plates from local restaurants. Silent and live auctions also are planned.

Tastes of the Valley is from 6 to 9 p.m. The $50 tickets can be ordered at www.stancofair.com or www.csustan.edu/agriculture. They also are at the fairgrounds office, 900 N. Broadway, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.

Speaking of Stan State ...

Stanislaus State University ranks No. 1 among public campuses in the West for the most “bang for the buck,” according to Washington Monthly.

The magazine released its 15th annual rankings of 1,732 four-year colleges in various categories. The “bank for the buck” measure is based on “how well they help non-wealthy students attain marketable degrees at affordable prices,” its website said.

Washington Monthly cited Stan State’s success with federal Pell Grant recipients and with students who are the first in their families to attend college, among other things.

And finally ...

Jared Steinwert, senior vice president and market manager at Farmers and Merchants Bank of Central California, completed the Graduate School of Banking at Colorado. The 36-month program provides management training for community banking professionals.

Steinwert works in the Modesto area for F&M Bank. It is based in Lodi and has 29 branches in the Central Valley and East Bay.

Names of Note recognizes people and organizations for their contribution to their communities. Submit items to jholland@modbee.com.

John Holland covers breaking news and has been with The Modesto Bee since 2000. He has covered agriculture for the Bee and at newspapers in Sonora and Visalia. He was born and raised in San Francisco and has a journalism degree from UC Berkeley.