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ProStart Hospitality Cup Competition Heats up Culinary Creativity

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March 04, 2015

CHARLESTON, W.Va - Culinary students from across West Virginia have one hour and two butane burners to produce a three course meal without access to running water and electricity during the 14th Annual ProStart Hospitality Cup. West Virginia high school juniors and seniors from 16 ProStart programs will travel to The Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs on March 4-5 to put their skills to the test in a culinary and foodservice management competition. The event is part of the West Virginia Department of Education's (WVDE) Hospitality, Education and Training (WV HEAT) program.

While the culinary challenge of the competition highlights each team's creative abilities, the management challenge requires teams to develop a proposal for the next promising restaurant concept and then present it to a panel of industry judges. Next, students' problem solving skills are tested as they quickly solve challenges faced by managers daily.

The first, second and third place teams will receive scholarships from post-secondary schools, both in-state and from across the country. The first place teams from the management competition and culinary competition will represent West Virginia at the National ProStart Invitational competition on April 18-20, 2015 in Anaheim, California.

The ProStart program is a two-year curriculum designed to teach high school students the management skills needed for a career in the restaurant and foodservice industry. Students also have the opportunity to participate in paid internships and be mentored by industry managers. Students that meet academic standards, complete a checklist of competencies, and participate in at least 400 hours of a mentored work experience are awarded the ProStart National Certificate of Achievement. The certificate signifies a student is well qualified to enter the industry workforce.

Currently, 46 ProStart programs operate in West Virginia with an enrollment of approximately 1,300 high school students per year.

For more information, contact Liza Cordeiro in the WVDE Communications Office at 304.558.2699.

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