Future Restaurant Industry Leaders Receive More Than $1 Million in Scholarships and Grants from the NRAEF

Washington, D.C. – November 1, 2022 – The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) is supporting the next generation of restaurant and foodservice industry talent with over $1 million in 2022 scholarships and individual grants awarded to 282 students from 44 states and territories pursuing post-secondary education at more than 124 colleges and universities.

The 2022 scholarship recipients represent the increasing diversity of the restaurant, foodservice, and hospitality industry, with nearly 60 percent self-identifying as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC) and two out of three self-identifying as female. One out of six recipients are members of the military or family of a military member, while 50 percent are the first generation in their families to pursue a post-secondary education. The youngest scholarship recipient is 17, while the oldest is 64. Learn more about the 2022 class of NRAEF scholarship recipients here.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to represent the upcoming generation of future chefs and hospitality leaders. Because of your help and the opportunity to continue learning from our industry’s finest, someday I can join them at the table and welcome those who will follow behind. This scholarship is more than money to pay for my education; it’s funding the growth of my imagination so that I can contribute things to our industry that we have not seen before,” said Victoria W., a sophomore pursuing culinary arts at Johnson & Wales University. Her scholarship was made possible by The Coca-Cola Scholarship Fund.

This year’s scholarships are funded by NRAEF’s generous partners, including:

  • Burger King Foundation
  • The Coca-Cola Company
  • Council of Hotel and Restaurant Trainers
  • Darden Restaurants Foundation
  • Hormel
  • The J.M. Smucker Company
  • PepsiCo
  • Rachael Ray Foundation
  • Rich Family Foundation
  • SPB Foundation
  • Women’s Foodservice Forum
  • Yum-o!

“We remain deeply grateful for the partnership of so many across our industry who generously support the NRAEF’s scholarship program,” said Rob Gifford, president of the NRAEF. “These awards make a tangible difference in the lives of recipients, helping to alleviate the financial burden of higher education. Most important, NRAEF scholarships are helping to cultivate the next generation of talent and leadership in our industry.”

Over the last 35 years, the NRAEF has awarded more than more than 5,000 scholarships valued at approximately $25 million. Awards range from $2,500 to $10,000 and can be used towards tuition and fees, books, room and board, as well as other school-related expenses. The scholarships have no age restrictions. Learn more at ChooseRestaurants.org/scholarships.

About the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation:

As the philanthropic foundation of the National Restaurant Association, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s (NRAEF) 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” 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 Restaurant & Hospitality Leadership Center (RHLC) – accredited apprenticeship programs designed to build the careers of service professionals. For more information on the NRAEF, visit ChooseRestaurants.org.

Click here for the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s 2021 Annual Impact Report. 


Hannah Oliver

Latest News