$1.1 Million in NRAEF Scholarships and Grants Awarded to Future Leaders of the Restaurant Industry

Nearly 60 percent of scholarships awarded to black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC)

WASHINGTON, DC – October 26, 2021 – The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) has awarded $1.1 million in scholarships and individual grants to more than 300 students pursuing post-secondary education at more than 130 colleges and universities across 44 states and territories.

This year, nearly 60 percent of NRAEF scholarship recipients self-identify as Black, Indigenous or People of Color (BIPOC), one out of two recipients are first-generation college students, and 70 percent self-identify as women. Eighty-eight percent of 2021 scholarship recipients have already begun working in the restaurant industry.


“Receiving this scholarship puts me closer to my dreams of being a culinary beacon to other women and minorities,” said Jamie Warrick, a senior at University of Holy Cross in New Orleans. Warrick is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in food science, with ambitions of helping underrepresented groups develop food products and food businesses. “Access to product development support is limited in low-income areas, and I want to bring the information closer.”


Warrick’s scholarship was provided by the NRAEF through Guy Fieri’s Restaurant Reboot event.


“As we rebound from the pandemic, the restaurant and foodservice industry needs the talents, innovation and energy of the next generation of leaders,” said Rob Gifford, president of the NRAEF. “Thank you to our scholarship donors who help young people realize their dreams through higher education.”

Over the past 34 years, the Foundation has awarded more than 5,000 scholarships valued at approximately $25 million. Visit ChooseRestaurants.org to learn how to get involved with the NRAEF and its work to build pathways to meaningful jobs and careers in restaurants and foodservice.


About the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation:
As the philanthropic foundation of the National Restaurant Association, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s mission of service to the public is dedicated to enhancing the industry’s training and education, career development and community engagement efforts. The NRAEF and its programs work to Attract, Empower and Advance today’s and tomorrow’s restaurant and foodservice workforce.

NRAEF programs include: ProStart® – a high-school career and technical education program; Restaurant Ready – partnering with community-based organizations to provide opportunity youth and justice-involved individuals with skills training and job opportunities; Military – helping military servicemen and women transition their skills to restaurant and foodservice careers; Scholarships – financial assistance for students pursuing restaurant, foodservice and hospitality degrees; and the Hospitality Sector Registered Apprenticeship project – a partnership with the American Hotel & Lodging Association providing a hospitality apprenticeship program for the industry.  To learn more about the NRAEF and its work, visit ChooseRestaurants.org.


Tori Hyndman
National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation

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