August 2017 Newsletter

Categories: News


National Farmworker Jobs Program Supports Student

Program offers student tuition assistance


Alison Mahoney-Doran is a Regional Director in Iowa.

Alison Mahoney-Doran is a Regional Director in Iowa.

After he heard about tuition assistance offered to seasonal farmworkers during his orientation at Des Moines Area Community College, William Dunagan contacted Proteus. An appointment was scheduled for the following evening for him to complete the intake process. During the interview, William shared that he has been working in a seasonal capacity for a local farmer in Altoona, Iowa, and that his goal was to complete the program at Des Moines Area Community College to earn his commercial drivers license (CDL) so that he could be considered for a full-time position with his current employer.

Following review of his application, it was determined that William did qualify for the National Farmworker Jobs Program due to his low wages, lack of significant job history, and participation in seasonal farm work. With this status, Proteus was able to help William by providing tuition assistance so that he could complete the job training program he had enrolled in.

WD 072017 (2)

William has a new career with Gibsons Farms, thanks to support from Proteus.

When William graduated from the program in April 2017, Proteus worked with him to secure full-time employment. Because William had completed the CDL program at Des Moines Area Community College, he was offered full-time employment with Gibson Farms, where he had worked previously, and he accepted. To be better prepared for the work they do, William and Matt Gibson, Gibson Farms, also completed tractor safety, worker protection standard, and heat safety training programs conducted by Proteus in coordination with the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs. Gibson reported that he was thrilled with the support from Proteus which provided William with tuition resources so that he could complete school and learn additional skills.

William reports that he enjoys his job, being on the farm and is very pleased with the case management, tuition assistance and training that he received while working with Proteus.

back to top


Proteus Eases Stress for Student

Program provides support for school


Matt Winkel is a Regional Director in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Brody Auen first heard about Proteus when he was referred by a friend who was also a client. He had enrolled in the Industrial Instrumentation and Control Program at Northwest Iowa Community College and was working toward finding a career he would enjoy. He had been employed seasonally for a local farmer, but found that he was just not making enough to get by. After enrolling in school, Brody was working three jobs and caring for a disabled family member, and was having trouble keeping up. When he heard about the assistance that Proteus could provide he knew he needed to find out if he was eligible.

Brody was able to meet with Case Manager Melissa Rude who enrolled him in the National Farmworkers Job Program. Once enrolled, Brody was able to receive tuition assistance as well as a stipend for his time in class. “Proteus definitely helped take some of the financial strain away so I could focus more on school,” he said. “If it would not have been for Proteus, I would have been stressing over financial matters more than school.”

Proteus Eases Stress for Student

Support from Proteus helped Brody achieve his career goals.

After completing his degree, Brody was quickly able to find a full-time job at Interstates Construction in Sioux Center, Iowa, as an electrical repair technician.

He is very appreciative of the assistance that Proteus was able to provide him. When asked what he most appreciated about being a Proteus client he said. “They were so accommodating and willing to help out.”

With a little help from his case manager, Brody was able to finally find a job that he truly enjoys and allows him to support himself.

back to top


Proteus Receives $7,000 Monsanto Grant

Funds will be used for migrant health program



Lacey Naaktgeboren Trygstad is the Migrant Health Program Director for Proteus.

Proteus received a $7,000 grant to expand nutritional services to migrant and seasonal farmworkers in Iowa. The grant was provided by the Monsanto Fund, a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the communities where farmers and Monsanto Company employees live and work.

Monsanto Photo.Grant.Award

A grant from the Monsanto Fund will support health care services for farmworkers.

Aligned with the Proteus mission to provide communities with health, educational and economic opportunities, the grant will be used to provide valuable food and nutritional education for Iowa farmworkers. The funds will be used to purchase groceries to help address immediate hunger issues as well as provide health education to migrant and seasonal farmworker communities across Iowa.

Proteus received a Monsanto Fund grant in 2016 which allowed for additional funds to support mobile health clinics and provide valuable primary medical care visits to farmworkers across Iowa. These clinics are vital to caring for this vulnerable population as farmworkers do not always have the flexibility to go to a typical medical appointment.

“Over the years, Proteus has provided stable, high quality care for all our migrant farmworkers. Our business relies heavily on a heathy, happy Migrant workforce, and we are dedicated to support efforts in this regard in any way we can”, said Brett Wilson, Monsanto. “We’re happy to continue our support for Proteus with this Monsanto Fund grant.”

back to top


Case Manager in Nebraska Eager to Assist Others

Maria Schinstock joins staff


Susan Billups Rabick is a Regional Director in Nebraska.

Susan Billups Rabick is a Regional Director in Nebraska.

Meet Maria Schinstock, new Bi-lingual Case Manager for the Lincoln, Nebraska office. Maria comes to Proteus from the Public Health Solutions District Health Department in Crete, Nebraska, where she was a case manager for the Minority Health Department. She also recently taught English as a Second Language classes at the Southeast Community College Department of Continuing Education. She’s passionate about being in a “helping” profession, but is also a seasoned saleswoman who looks forward to selling the Proteus program to anyone within earshot.

Originally from Guadalajara, Mexico, Maria came to Nebraska in 1995 after completing college in Mexico, marrying and having two daughters who are now adults. She lives in West Point, Nebraska, which is in the center of her territory that encompasses northeast Nebraska.

Maria Shinstock is a Case Manager in Nebraska.

One of Maria’s previous jobs was with the West Point Public Schools, working as a para-educator in the migrant education program. She states that, “education is always my priority in everything I do.”

Maria’s most recent position with the District Health Department, Crete, Nebraska, had her doing outreach with individuals with chronic health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. She educated clients in how to manage their health issues. Her knowledge of Nebraska resources has already been valuable when accompanying co-worker, Case Manager Kim Parnell, when conducting intake interviews. She was able to assist and provide referrals for an individual with health needs.

Maria brings a bubbly, passionate and capable attitude to her job with Proteus. She’s quite computer savvy – and not afraid to tackle new technology and uses that same determination to assist Proteus clients.

View a video introduction to Maria.

back to top