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National Restaurant Association - Students win big at ProStart Invitational

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Students win big at ProStart Invitational



Pictured top: The team from Polaris Career Center in Middleburg Heights, Ohio, took top culinary honors at this year's National ProStart Invitational. Pictured above: The team from Saginaw Career Complex in Saginaw, Mich., won the first-place prize for management.

Students from Ohio, Michigan, Guam, South Carolina, Texas, Maryland, Kansas, Missouri and Connecticut cooked up the excitement at our 16th Annual National ProStart Invitational, April 28 to 30, in Charleston, S.C.

The team from Polaris Career Center in Middleburg Heights, Ohio, took first-place honors in culinary and the team from Saginaw Career Complex in Saginaw, Mich., won the first-place prize in management.

More than 400 students competed at this year’s event, which was hosted by our educational foundation. The 10 winning teams – five specializing in culinary and five in restaurant management – walked away with scholarships totaling more than $50,000 and recognition as the country’s best.

“Each year we are amazed at the creativity, skill and hard work these students put into the competition,” said Rob Gifford, the NRAEF’s executive vice president. “They practiced for months, competed at the state level and put on a show of culinary expertise and restaurant innovation that rivals some of the best seasoned pros in the business. These students represent the next generation of talent and leaders in restaurants and foodservice and we look forward to watching them achieve their dreams in this amazing industry.”

Here is the list of our 2017 winners:

First Place – Culinary
Team Ohio from Polaris Career Center, Middleburg Heights, Ohio

First Place – Restaurant Management
Team Michigan from Saginaw Career Complex, Saginaw, Mich.

Second Place – Culinary
Team Guam from Okkodo High School, Dededo, Guam

Second Place – Restaurant Management
Team South Carolina from Anderson Career & Technology Center, Williamston, S.C.

Third Place – Culinary
Team Texas from Rockwall High School, Rockwall, Texas

Third Place – Restaurant Management
Team Maryland from George Washington Carver Center for Arts & Technology, Towson, Md.

 Fourth Place – Culinary
Team Kansas from Olathe Public School, Olathe, Kansas

Fourth Place – Restaurant Management
Team Missouri from Parkway North High School, St. Louis, Mo.

Fifth Place – Culinary
Team South Carolina from Anderson Career & Technology Center, Williamston, S.C.

Fifth Place – Restaurant Management
Team Connecticut from Wilbur Cross High School, New Haven, Conn.

The winners’ scholarships can be used at the college or university of their choice to continue their restaurant/foodservice educations. First place and second-place scholarships, worth $5,000 and $3,000 respectively, were sponsored by the Coca-Cola Co. The Darden Restaurants Foundation sponsored the $1,500 third-place scholarship, Oracle Hospitality sponsored the $1,000 fourth-place scholarship, and Red Robin International Inc. sponsored the $500 fifth-place scholarship. The winning team members also received a $1,000 scholarship from the Burger King McLamore Foundation.

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