Prostart Grow Grant FAQS

Q: How do the Rachael Ray Foundation ProStart Grow Grants work?

A: The following is the minimum criteria to apply for a scholarship:

The NRAEF will facilitate the grant process by accepting applications from all current or onboarding/incoming ProStart schools for the 2023–2024 academic year. Each school will submit a complete application and, if selected, will be required to sign an agreement about joining ProStart for the next school year or return the funds.

Q: Who needs to submit the application?

A: Applications can be submitted by ProStart educators, high school culinary arts instructors or school administrators. The application can be found at this link here – APPLY TODAY!

Q. How are the winners chosen?

A. The NRAEF has assembled a panel of judges to review the applications. During a two-week judging period, the panel will review each application anonymously. The final selections will be made based on the following need-based qualifications:

  • Barriers to success (e.g. financial support, access to resources, etc.)
  • Efficacy of program (e.g. administering exams, obtaining the COA, etc.)
  • Classroom equipment
  • Career opportunities available to students upon graduation
  • Ability for the grant to make an impact on the school, the students and the community at-large
Q: What about the State Restaurant Associations?

A: The NRAEF and The Rachael Ray Foundation are looking to the SRAs for their support in sharing this announcement with the educators and school administrators in their state to ensure a variety of schools across the country have the opportunity to apply.

Upon selecting the schools, the NRAEF will also work with SRA partners to announce the selections and support the school in implementing the grant work.

Q. Once schools are selected, what happens next?

A. The NRAEF will be in contact with the applicant to notify and congratulate their school on the award. From there we will provide next steps on how we will move forward.

Q. Are there any tips or guidelines I should follow?

A. This grant is the first-of-its-kind, so here are some tips for success in submitting your application.

Be detailed. A thoroughly written essay helps the reviewer get to know you better. Make sure to stay within the word count limits.
Spell check. The application doesn’t spellcheck, so we recommend drafting your responses in a word document first and fixing any errors before copy/pasting into the appropriate text box.
Save constantly. The system will log out if left idle for 10 minutes.  You can move to a different section by saving your work and returning to the dashboard.
Be sure to demonstrate a compelling need. This is a need-based grant, so be sure to effectively convey why your ProStart school should be selected for this exciting opportunity.

For more information, contact with additional questions.