Rachael Ray Foundation Offers High Schools $5,000 in Funding to Grow Culinary Arts and Restaurant Management Programs

“ProStart grow grants” will help deserving high schools add ProStart to their curriculum or improve their existing ProStart programs –  – APPLICATION DEADLINE – MARCH 1, 2021

WASHINGTON, DC – Tuesday, February 2nd 2021 – ProStart high schools across the country can win a $5,000 grant to expand their ability to educate the next generation of restaurant leaders, thanks to The Rachael Ray Foundation (RRF).

Through The Rachael Ray Foundation ProStart Grow Grant, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) will provide up to 25 grants for ProStart schools or schools with culinary arts programs, demonstrating a strong need to engage and educate high school students interested in exploring restaurant and foodservice jobs and careers.

ProStart is a two-year technical education program focused on culinary arts and restaurant management, offered in 1,700 schools across the country with 130,000 students enrolled. ProStart educators and coordinators have largely adapted to the COVID19 restrictions with a mix of virtual and in-person learning, posing challenges for students to learn the hands-on skills the program often requires. Funding from RRF will offer schools with the opportunity to upgrade or purchase new resources, build up their classrooms in preparation for return to school, and support teachers with whatever they need to help their students learn career-building skills.

“We are excited to support another year of ProStart grow grants, especially in the middle of the pandemic,” said Rachael Ray, award-winning television personality and philanthropist. “ProStart is often the steppingstone for many budding chefs, aspiring restaurateurs and the future leaders of the restaurant and foodservice industry. The Rachael Ray Foundation wants to continue to inspire these students to fulfill their dreams and grow their skillset as the restaurant industry will come roaring back. As a longtime partner of the NRAEF, we can’t wait to see the impact of this second round of funding.”

Over the past 15 years, more than 260 scholarships have been provided by Rachael Ray’s Yum-o! organization and the Rachael Ray Foundation, totaling $1.8M in support to NRAEF scholarships and ProStart.

“The Rachael Ray Foundation is one of our most charitable partners, and we are ecstatic to continue offering ProStart Grow Grants with their support,” said Rob Gifford, president of the NRAEF. “With the first round of funding, schools were able to rebuild their kitchens, purchase resources they need, and even launch their own food trucks. We can’t wait to see what other amazing ideas our educators and students are cooking up.”

Applicants have until 5 pm PST on March 1st, 2021 to complete their submissions for the NRAEF’s consideration.  Learn more about ProStart here.

Visit ChooseRestaurants.org to apply today and learn more about the NRAEF’s work to attract, empower and advance today and tomorrow’s restaurant and foodservice workforce.



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 previously incarcerated 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. For more information on the NRAEF, visit ChooseRestaurants.org.

About The Rachael Ray Foundation
The Rachael Ray Foundation™ (RRF) is a private foundation that is fully funded by the proceeds from the sale of Rachael Ray™ Nutrish®. RRF was launched by Rachael in 2016 to better support the causes she cares for most such as helping animals in need. Additionally, RRF works with organizations that support the mission of Yum-o!, Rachael’s 501c3, in order to bolster and amplify their efforts through additional funding. Yum-o! empowers kids and their families to develop healthy relationships with food and cooking. It also teaches families to cook, feeds hungry kids, and funds cooking education, among other initiatives.

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Mallory Domingue


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