Grant County High School has been selected by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) to be one of the first high schools in the Commonwealth of Kentucky to offer the ProStart Certification to its culinary students.
ProStart is the restaurant industry’s leading career-building program for high school students who are interested in culinary arts and restaurant management. The two-year technical education program:
● features a curriculum that is industry-derived and competency-based,
● teaches culinary techniques and restaurant management principles, and
● includes real-life restaurant sector experiences.
In addition to the coursework, students who earn the ProStart National Certificate of Achievement must pass two national exams, demonstrate foundational skills and work 400 mentored hours. Those earning the certification are eligible for NRAEF scholarship opportunities and course credits at more than 60 of the nation’s leading hospitality and culinary arts colleges and universities.
ProStart students also have the opportunity to compete at a national level at the annual National ProStart Invitational, the country’s premier high school competition focused on restaurant management and culinary arts.
Mrs. Anna Sullinger, Family and Consumer Science Teacher at Grant County High School was instrumental in bringing the program to GCHS and will be the instructor in charge. “We have 13 students who have taken the pre-requisite classes (“Foods and Nutrition” and “Advanced Foods and Nutrition”) and have now enrolled in Pro-Start I,” states Mrs. Sullinger. “Most of these students are also enrolled in two dual-credit culinary courses through Maysville Culinary Institute at Maysville Community and Technical College. Those students who wish to pursue a career in the food industry will have a head start on their education and career, and those who choose to work their way through college in the food industry will find themselves qualified for higher paying jobs while doing so. We are very pleased to be one of three schools chosen to pilot ProStart I in Kentucky and look forward to introducing Pro-Start II next year.”
Total restaurant and foodservice employment is projected to grow by 11 percent over the next 10 years. Because ProStart is an extension of the National Restaurant Association it provides a direct career pathway for our students. Grant County High School is excited to be partner with them in ensuring the development of a highly-trained and professional talent pool through educational programs such as Pro-Start.
ProStart’s expansion into Kentucky and Grant County High School’s was announced September 10, 2014, making the program now available in 49 states, Guam, and on Department of Defense military bases.