Alumni Ryan and Ashley Jacobsen establish scholarship endowment

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Alumni Ryan and Ashley Jacobsen establish scholarship endowment

Fresno State alumni Ryan and Ashley Jacobsen established a $25,000 endowment with the Ag One Foundation to support scholarships for students of the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology.

“We’re excited to unveil an award from two of our most respected graduates and local leaders,” said Dr. Sandra Witte, interim dean of the Jordan College. “Ryan, a Rodman scholar and two-term student body president, and Ashley, a Smittcamp Family Honors College scholar and ASI student vice president, used their experience to make a difference on campus and promote agriculture in the Central Valley. We appreciate Ryan and Ashley giving back in yet another way, especially with a noteworthy gift not long after their graduation.”

Ryan, a fourth-generation local family farmer, now serves as the CEO of the 4,000-member Fresno County Farm Bureau and host of the television program “Valley’s Gold,” which airs on ValleyPBS. He has deep connections to Fresno State, earning a bachelor’s degree in 2002, an M.B.A. in 2004 and formerly serving as president of the Ag One Foundation.

Ryan’s wife, Ashley, earned a bachelor’s in business administration in 2003, and now works for Deloitte as an audit senior manager.

“Ag One scholarships allowed me to fully engage in my studies and collegiate activities,” Ryan said. “We hope our endowment will afford the same scholarship opportunities to current students who will impact our University and the California agricultural industry for years to come.”

Fresno State senior Jessica Sweet was recently named the first recipient of the scholarship.

Sweet, of Livermore, is majoring in agricultural education, and serves as a national collegiate agriculture ambassador for the National FFA Association, president of the FFA Field Day Committee and secretary for the Jordan College Student Leadership Council.

“Receiving this award is not only an honor but a much-needed gift to help continue my education,” Sweet said. “I never imagined that a college would welcome me with such open arms. The Jordan College has become my second home. I am honored to be recognized by the Jacobsen family and would like to thank them for personally investing so much of themselves to ensure the success of current and future students.”

Established in 1979, Ag One has raised more than $16 million to benefit, promote and support the college and its programs. In that span, more than 3,350 students have received more than $2.4 million in scholarships and grants. In the 2014-2015 academic year, Ag One will provide nearly $500,000 to deserving students and programs.

For more information, contact Geoff Thurner, Jordan College media and development communications, at 559.278.7221 or gthurner@csufresno.edu.