The Pi Chi Omega Industry Grant Program (IGP) has funded and awarded the first industry grant.
IGP was introduced to the industry about one year ago at PestWorld 2022. After seed money contributed by Trécé in 2022, Pi Chi Omega announced the full funding of $50,000 of the Daniel A. Baldwin Industry Grant, by Hawx Pest Services. Dan Baldwin, BCE, CCFS, CP-FS, REHS/RS, is the VP of Technical Services for Hawx Pest Control and a Pest Management Professional columnist.
In the 2017 Pi Chi Omega 5-year strategic plan, Pi Chi Omega identified industry grants as a strategic activity that would extend important support for the education and professional development of our front-line technicians and service people.
“Hawx stepped up with this generous contribution, enabling Pi Chi Omega to continue our mission of connecting and enriching the pest management industry in this new and important way,” Dr. Cassie Krejci, Pi Chi Omega’s president, said in the news release.
The Industry Grant Program Committee, chaired by James Miller with Trécé, reviewed the first round of applicants and selected Sarah Latyn as the inaugural recipient of the Daniel A. Baldwin Industry Grant Program. Latyn has a dual technical role in the industry. Latyn is the technical training manager of Rest Easy Pest Control and a technical consultant for White Mantis Consulting. In addition to her professional role in the pest management industry, Sarah is pursuing a master of science degree in entomology, at the University of Kentucky.
“While I know much of the useful knowledge in pest control is learned in the field, when one is in a technical role, having these extra qualifications can gain credibility that can be hard to come by, especially when you are young and female,” Latyn said in her application.
“Rightly, a lot of emphasis is placed on college students studying entomology and related sciences, as they can have a significant impact on our industry,” said Matt Mehr, president of Hawx Pest Control. “However, there are people in our industry today who have tremendous potential, but all too often, the educational and experiential opportunities that can help them reach their goals are just out of reach. This industry grant will allow Pi Chi Omega to provide much-needed assistance to our future leaders in their pursuit of personal and professional excellence.”
Pi Chi Omega wants to give the financial assistance needed for PMPs to take the next step on their pest control career ladder.
Latyn’s daily work in the industry, coupled with her formal studies at the University of Kentucky is a great combination to create and support her professional excellence. Sarah received a grant of $2,441 to pay the full tuition for one class at the University of Kentucky.
“Receiving this industry grant is such an honor for me because it feels as though my last 4-plus years in the industry and my accomplishments are being recognized,” Latyn said. “This grant allows me to continue my master’s degree so that I can be a technical voice within the pest management industry and be a role model for females, young and old, who think pest control is not for them.”
Pi Chi Omega recognizes the need for ongoing education in the field of urban and industrial pest management. Examples of activities that could be considered for the Pi Chi Omega Industry Grants include conference attendance, college or technical level courses, other advanced skill acquisition, seed money for a new project, costs of publishing or disseminating relevant information to the industry and more. As with all Pi Chi Omega scholarships, you do not have to be a member to receive an award, but we would genuinely enjoy your membership. Industry Grant applications are accepted year-round and will be reviewed each Jan. 1 and June 1. For more information, please visit https://www.pichiomega.org/industry-grant-program/.