Are you or someone you know pursuing a career in the Baking/Pastry Arts?  The Wisconsin Bakers Association (WBA) has a national scholarship opportunity available for students in that field.  In addition, the WBA has the WBA Scholarship available for Wisconsin students who would like to continue their education in the baking field.

The WBA established the Robert W. Hiller Scholarship to support and encourage people who have demonstrated a passion for a profession in the baking/pastry arts field.  A $1,000 scholarship will be awarded per academic year to the applicant who can best demonstrate this career commitment.  The WBA awarded the first Robert W. Hiller Scholarship during its Centennial Celebration in September 2005.

“Since we started the award in 2005, there has been increased interest in the Robert W. Hiller Scholarship,” WBA Executive Director Dave Schmidt said.  “We have been amazed at the career goals past applicants have set for themselves at such an early point in their academic careers.  We look forward to seeing the applicant pool for the award this year.”

The Robert W. Hiller Scholarship Fund was established on Nov. 5, 2000, by the members of the WBA in honor of Robert (Bob) and the late Sandy Hiller's lifelong commitment to the retail baking industry.  The program intends to provide a financial resource for the education of students who are the future of the baking industry.

“Our board of directors was looking for a way to help the future of the industry,” Schmidt said.  “We also talked about how we could honor someone who has given so much to baking in his more than 60 years in the industry.  Bob and his late wife Sandy have offered so much, and their generosity is something many of us have been thankful for.  This has been a great award to honor and thank him for his contributions.”

Applicants for the R.W. Hiller Scholarship must meet the following criteria:

Applicants must have a minimum high school (or equivalent) degree.

Applicants must have a GPA of at least 2.85 on a 4.0 scale (may be waived for first time returning adult students).

Applicants must be pursuing a degree (master’s, doctorate, associate, bachelor’s or diploma) in a baking/pastry arts related field that prepares candidates for a retail baking profession.  Certificate program candidates are not eligible to apply for the award.

Applicants must submit three letters of recommendation, including at least one from an employer and/or academic advisor.

The applicant must submit a resume.

The applicant must submit a written essay (500 words or less) detailing why he/she is passionate about a profession in the baking/pastry arts field and what they have done to demonstrate and develop that passion.  The essay should include their goals for the future.

Candidates will be subject to a phone interview to determine the recipient of the scholarship.

Students entering the last semester of their Baking/Pastry Arts program are not eligible for the scholarship.

The Robert W. Hiller Scholarship Committee will review all completed applications postmarked by Monday, June 6, 2011.  The application also is available online at  Click on the scholarships link at the top of the main page.

WBA Scholarship

In addition to the R.W. Hiller Scholarship, the WBA also has awarded the WBA Scholarship.  This is a $1,000 scholarship given annually since 1984 to Wisconsin students in the baking profession.  More than $26,000 in scholarship money has been awarded to students through the WBA Scholarship.  Scholarship applications are accepted throughout the year and more than one scholarship may be awarded per year.  This application also can be found on our Web site on the scholarships page. 

WBA scholarship applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements:

The applicant must have worked for a bakery operator for at least 500 hours.

The applicant must be at least 18 years of age by the time the scholarship would be in effect.

Three written references must be enclosed with the application form as to character and work experience.

The applicant must submit a resume along with a statement explaining his/her career objectives and why he/she deserves and needs the scholarship.

The applicant must have completed high school or passed the high school equivalency test (GED) by the time the scholarship would take effect.

Must be a Wisconsin resident and applying or attending a Wisconsin accredited baking school.

Scholarships given through the WBA are awarded without regard to age, sex, race, religion, marital status, national origin, handicap or sexual preference.  For more information about either scholarship, email or call the WBA Member Services Center at (800) 542-2688.

About the WBA
The WBA is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping members increase their baking and business knowledge, fostering the education of future bakers, keeping members informed about developments in the baking industry and legislative matters affecting them, and representing members’ interests at the state and federal government levels.  Organized in 1905, the WBA is made up of retail and wholesale bakeries; multi-unit operators; supermarket bakeries; specialty shops; bakery suppliers; college bakery programs; manufacturers and associate members.  There is also a student membership category to bring future members of the industry into the fold.  Visit for more information and event updates.  The WBA Member Services Center is located at 2514 S. 102nd St., Suite 100, West Allis, WI.