The culinary team from Maryland’s Howard High School captured third place in the culinary competition at the 12th Annual National ProStart Invitational (NPI) held in Baltimore April 19-21. Culinarians included Darcey Bodziony, Jessica Green, Natalie Singleton, Emma Spalding and Kiran Martin. Dana Spoto and Ronda Lang are their culinary instructors at the school and they were mentored by Chef Marc Dixon of Bistro Blanc restaurant.
The winners were announced Sunday night at the completion of two days of competition at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel.
This rigorous competition brought together more than 350 top ProStart students from 44 states, territories and Department of Defense bases to compete for the national titles, as well as scholarships to help fund their college education.
The culinary competition gave each team ONE HOUR to create an appetizer, entrée and dessert. Judges scored each team on proper food safety and sanitation procedures, proper cooking methods, food taste, teamwork, knife skills, poultry fabrication and menu difficulty. Teams also had to price their menu to a 33% food cost and demonstrate their knowledge of menu development and pricing. The judges for the culinary competition were from leading culinary schools and the foodservice industry in Maryland and around the country.
The NRAEF and partner colleges and universities created a pool of more than $1.4 million in scholarships at the competition for the first- through fifth-place teams to pursue their education in foodservice and hospitality programs.
The National ProStart Invitational consists of two competitions – management and culinary – and teams must win first place at the state level to advance to the national event. In this fast-paced competition, teams demonstrated their culinary skills and knowledge of restaurant management before nearly 1,000 fellow students, educators, mentors, state restaurant association representatives, industry professionals and NRAEF Trustees.
The culinary winners of 2013 are:
1st – Simon Sanchez High School, Guam
2nd – Technology Center of DuPage, Illinois
3rd – Howard High School, Maryland
4th – Olathe Public Schools, Kansas
5th – Oak Harbor High School, Washington
The management winners of 2013 are:
1st – Badger High School, Wisconsin
2nd – Sauk Rapids-Rice High School, Minnesota
3rd – Bergen County Academies, New Jersey
4th – Brookings High School, South Dakota
5th – Mark Twain High School, Missouri