Local youth wins scholarship for tuition from McDonald’s

Scholarship winner Ariel Mayes accepts her scholarship while posing with Ronald McDonald and local McDonalds Owner/Operator Johnny Tart at the Ronald McDonald House of Winston-Salem.

Local youth wins scholarship for tuition from McDonald’s
May 26
05:00 2016

Photo by Timothy Ramsey



McDonald’s restaurants have provided job opportunities for American youth for decades. Assisting its employees in furthering their education is paramount to the company as well.

On Friday, May 20, local McDonald’s owners/operators presented scholarships to 11 employees based on their academic achievements, community involvement, and an essay describing what they have learned from their work experience at McDonald’s  The event took place at the Ronald McDonald House of Winston-Salem. Radio personalities Busta Brown of 97.1 FM and Jared from 107.5 FM presented the scholarships.

Ariel Mayes of Pfafftown was one of the students honored Friday. Ariel is a two-time winner of the $1,000 Ray Kroc scholarship.  Kroc was the owner of the McDonald’s corporation and established the Ronald McDonald House foundation.

“The Ray Kroc Scholarship Award was developed to offer our high school and college students who work within McDonald’s an opportunity to be recognized and rewarded for making an impact both academically and in their communities,” said Johnny Tart, a local owner/operator of McDonald’s in the Triad.

Ariel is currently studying Information Systems with a minor in Computer Science at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.  She has been employed with McDonald’s for the past four years.

Ariel was born in Orangeburg, S.C., and her family relocated to Pfafftown when she was a pre-teen.  She began working at McDonald’s at the age of 16 and said she has really enjoyed working there.

“I enjoy talking and getting to know people of different backgrounds,” said Mays.  “Working at McDonald’s has helped prepare me for the future by not being so reserved because I am a very introverted individual.  So that has helped me to be able to talk with a variety of people.”

Ginny Whan, owner/operator of McDonald’s where Ariel is employed, said, “We have had the pleasure of working with her for the past four years and it has been awesome to watch her grow in her relationships with people, her peers, and our customers. Everything she does we continue to be impressed by and are very proud of her and happy she is a part of our team.” Upon graduation, Mayes says she wants to go into web design. Arlindo Mayes, Ariel’s mom, stated that her daughter has a bright future and foresees her entering the corporate world because of her dynamic leadership skills.

“The sky’s the limit for her,” said Whan. “She is dedicated in whatever she decides to do. She definitely has a backpack full of tools from working with us and the education she has received in school, honestly, that girl can do whatever she wants.”

Mayes said she feels very accomplished to have won the scholarship, especially two years in a row. Her mother says that the scholarship is a big help and will assist with the purchase of books and meals as well as personal items.

“People are our number one asset to begin with. And when you layer on someone with the skill set, personality, the appearance, and positive mindset

she has, I can’t even begin to calculate what she has been worth to us over the years,” Whan affectionately said of Mayes.

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