Lerseth awarded Professional Development Scholarship for Educators The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation recently awarded a $1,750 scholarship to Ilene Lerseth of Vermillion High School as part of its Professional Development Scholarship for Educators program. The program provides financial support to high school and collegiate restaurant and foodservice educators who want to complement classroom time with additional industry knowledge by participating in a "hands-on" work experience or attending one of the National Restaurant Association's 2009 Summer Institutes. Lerseth was among more than 150 teachers nationwide who applied for the scholarship in 2009, and one of only two South Dakota teachers who received funds through the program. "We are proud to present Ilene with the 2009 Professional Development Scholarship for Educators," said Linda Bacin, chair, NRAEF Board of Trustees. "Educators like Ilene are vital to the future of the restaurant and foodservice industry's workforce – a workforce that is expected to grow by 1.8 million employees over the next ten years. We congratulate her and thank her for everything she has done and continues to do." Lerseth will use the funds to complete a 120 hour internship required for the ProStart high schol teacher certification program. She will be working with WR Restaurants (owners of Minerva's and other restaurants), and with Sanford Medical Center to gain a variety of experiences which she believes will benefit her students.