USC Marshall Food Industry Program Awards Distinguished Allumbaugh Scholarship to an Outstanding Food Industry Management Alumni

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The USC Marshall School of Business Food Industry Program announced today that the prestigious Byron Allumbaugh Food Industry Leadership Scholarship has been awarded to Sona Samvelian. The recipient is a veteran of the food industry with more than 25 years' experience working for Food 4 Less and Ralphs, the two Southern California based divisions of the Kroger Co. This full, graduate-level scholarship is awarded each year to one outstanding Food Industry Management alumni who has been accepted into the new online Master of Science in Food Industry Leadership program (M.S. FIL -  Samvelian will be among the first students to pioneer this exciting new contribution to the Food Industry Program. 

(PRNewsfoto/USC Marshall School of Business)

"This award comes from Byron Allumbaugh's unwavering commitment to training and education," said Cynthia McCloud, Director of Food Industry Programs at USC Marshall. "As a 39-year industry veteran and former CEO of Ralphs, he cultivated many promising leaders, always providing guidance and encouragement. His advocacy and inspiration carry on today through the gift of his scholarship.

"Our recipient this year, Sona Samvelian, is an exceptional choice for this award as she represents the best of the industry today," said McCloud. "She began as a utility clerk with Food 4 Less in 1993 and has worked her way up within the Food 4 Less and Ralphs organizations to Assistant Real Estate Manager. Along the way, she has demonstrated outstanding leadership skills and been recognized with multiple awards and scholarships.  This scholarship allows her to continue her education."

Samvelian starts the next step on her educational pathway this week with the kickoff of the M.S. FIL program on August 18. Featuring a highly competitive and hands-on curriculum focused on the newest industry technologies, strategic planning, and managing change, the specialized degree is designed for experienced food industry professionals. Samvelian is a member of the first cohort that will progress through this dynamic new offering.

Samvelian plans to use what she learns in the M.S. FIL program to continue to grow and improve her skills, sharing her expertise throughout her organization. Her intelligence, leadership, and motivation will help further her personal goals, as well as reflecting those of her employer, the USC Food Industry Programs, and Byron Allumbaugh.

"I look forward to studying both the theoretical and practical elements of the USC M.S. FIL program. I am dedicated to putting into practice the techniques and technologies that will make me a more strategic and effective leader," said Samvelian. "I am eager to face the challenges that our changing industry is bringing with automation and other future technologies and seeing how I can work within that new environment."

USC Marshall's Food Industry Programs are built on decades of proven results and the commitment to provide food industry leaders with innovative solutions facing them in the marketplace. Founded in 1958, the Food Industry Management (FIM) program is a 16-week undergraduate program that integrates the functional areas of business with cutting-edge theory and practical application. The 4-day Food Industry Executive Program (FIEP) workshop is designed for busy industry executives and taught by full-time faculty at USC Marshall School of Business as well as experts within the food industry. The new online Master of Science, Food Industry Leadership (FIL) program expands on the rich educational offerings with a 16-month focus on key areas of leadership in the food industry. For more information, please visit:

Matthew Simmons, 213-821-9868

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SOURCE USC Marshall School of Business

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