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Chicago, IL, April 29, 2013 — At the Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) Chicago Awards Breakfast, C-CAP President Susan Robbins awarded over $380,000 in scholarships and cash awards to 18 high school seniors during the awards ceremony hosted by The Signature Room at the John Hancock building.

Hard work, good grades and a lot of broken eggs paid off for Alquanida Lewis from Prosser Career Academy who won a full-tuition scholarship for the Bachelors Degree to Johnson & Wales University valued at $104,448. Hector Perez from Clemente High School earned a full-tuition scholarship for the Associates Degree to the Culinary Institute of America in upstate New York valued at $51,800. Menajah O’Neal from Harper High School earned a full-tuition scholarship for the Associates Degree in Culinary Arts to the Art Institutes of Atlanta. Wendy Martinez from Prosser Career Academy received a full-tuition scholarship for the Associates Degree to Le Cordon Bleu, valued at $36,200.

Scholarships awarded ranged in value from $2,000 to $104,000 and included some of the most prestigious local culinary schools including Lexington College, Joliet Junior College, St. Augustine College and Washburne Culinary Institute. Students also received scholarships from the Gourmet Housewares Scholarship Foundation.

Fourteen high school juniors were awarded places at Monroe College Culinary Boot Camp, Kendall College Summer Camp in Chicago and a Nutrition Camp sponsored by Aramark at the University of Chicago.

Only a few days earlier, during the C-CAP Chicago Cooking Competition for Scholarships, 18 finalists representing nine Chicago high schools and the culinary program at Gallery 37 competed against the clock when C-CAP re-created the intensity of a restaurant kitchen for the high school seniors to face off in a savory and sweet challenge. Students were judged by a panel of local celebrity judges on presentation of dishes, knife skills, techniques in the kitchen, taste, sanitary food handling and timeliness. Our esteemed judges included:

Chef Katherine August, Executive Chef Restaurant Association

Chef Phillip Foss, El Ideas

Chef William Johnson, Filini Bar & Restaurant (C-CAP Alum)

Chef Brian Jupiter, Frontier

Chef Daniel Kelly, Hyatt

Chef Jim Ortiz, Frontera Grill (C-CAP Alum)

Chef Danielle Thomas, Olivia’s, Walt Disney (C-CAP Alum)

Chef Garrick Turner, Macy’s (C-CAP Alum)

Chef Zoe Schor, Ada Street

Richard Grausman, Founder of C-CAP

Susan Robbins, President of C-CAP

The C-CAP Cooking Competitions for Scholarships are the culmination of the C-CAP high school program for underserved teenagers at risk of leaving high school without job or college prospects. The C-CAP program offers direction, a set of useful skills, scholarships and the potential for a fulfilling career in a growing industry.

Chicago Corporate Photographer

2013 Chicago competitors and judges surround
C-CAP Founder Richard Grausman and President Susan Robbins


Clemente High School

Courtney Flenoy, Lexington College Partial-Tuition Scholarship, $56,760

Hector Perez, Culinary Institute of America Full-Tuition Associates Degree Scholarship, $51,800, C-CAP Education Scholarship $1,000, Total $52,800

Fernando Pita, New England Culinary Institute Certificate Program in Professional Cooking, $6,200, C-CAP Education Scholarship, $500, Total $6,700

Dunbar Vocational Career Academy

Antoinette Hodges, C-CAP Education Scholarship $2,500

Gallery 37 AAEP Culinary Arts Program

Uzziel Orozco, Joliet Junior College Tuition Assistance Scholarship, $500, C-CAP Education Scholarship $500, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship $2,500, Total $3,500

Dequandre Williams, Illinois Institute of Arts-Chicago Partial-Tuition Scholarship, $25,000, C-CAP Education Scholarship, $500, Total $25,500

Harper High School

Daneka Kelly, C-CAP Education Scholarship, $500, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship $2,000, Total: $2,500

Menajah O’Neal, Art Institute of Atlanta Full-Tuition Scholarship, $43,740, C-CAP Education Scholarship $1,000, Total $44,740

North Grand High School

Sara Aragon, Washburne Culinary Institute Partial-Tuition Scholarship, $2,000, C-CAP Education Scholarship $2,500, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship $500, Total, $5,000

Joanna Flores, St. Augustine College Tuition Assistance Scholarship, $2,920

Alisia Lilliebridge, C-CAP Education Scholarship, $2,000

Prosser Career Academy

Alquanida Lewis, Johnson & Wales University Full-Tuition Scholarship, $104,448, C-CAP Education Scholarship, $500, Total $104,948

Wendy Martinez, Le Cordon Bleu Chicago Full-Tuition for the Associates Degree, $36,200, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship $1,000, Total: $37,200

Brianna Sappington, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship, $2,000

Richards Career Academy

Maria Garcia, Washburne Culinary Institute Partial-Tuition Scholarship, $2,000, C-CAP Education Scholarship $2,500, Total $4,500

Alma Villa, Washburne Culinary Institute Partial-Tuition Scholarship, $2,000, C-CAP Education Scholarship $500, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship $2,000, Total, $4,500

Simeon Career Academy

Everton Henry Jr., Le Cordon Bleu Full-Tuition Scholarship for the Certificate, $19,200, C-CAP Education Award, $1,000, Total, $20,200

Washington High School

Leonard Gutierrez, New England Culinary Institute Certificate Program in Professional Cooking, $6,200, Gourmet Housewares Scholarship, $2,000, Total $8,200



Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) works with public schools nationwide to prepare underserved high school students for college and career opportunities in the restaurant and hospitality industry.

In Chicago for the 2012-2013 academic year, C-CAP impacted the lives of over 2,500 students in 19 public schools working with 32 teachers through training, career services and scholarships. C-CAP provides training and curriculum enrichment programs including: job training and internships, professional development for teachers, college and career advising, and culinary competitions that lead to culinary school scholarships.

A national nonprofit organization founded in 1990 by well-known culinary educator and author, Richard Grausman, C-CAP manages the largest independent culinary scholarship program in the United States and has awarded high school students $40 million in scholarships and donated $2.8 million worth of supplies and equipment to classrooms.


CONTACT: Nicola Copeland

PH: 312-505-0534

Joyce Appelman

PH: 516-482-1016






This year’s annual C-CAP Chicago Farmer’s Market Cooking Challenge was held during our overnight ARAMARK Nutrition Camp at the University of Chicago. Thirty students were broken up into teams lead by chef mentors where they worked for two days to create recipes and plan a menu based on locally grown and sustainable items found at the Green City Market. Each team had two hours to cook as many original recipes as possible. It was an exciting two hours, in which Team #3 won this year’s challenge!

Congrats to Chef Marcel Taylor and his team of outstanding C-CAP students!

Team Members:
Brandon Gadson- Senior Simeon Career Academy
Cinthya Hernandez- North Grand High School
Allyson Hixson – Prosser Career Academy
Claudia Ramirez- Richards Career Academy

Arugula and Baby Heirloom Tomato Salad with Honey Lime Vinaigrette
Pan seared beef medallions with chipotle cream sauce served with Poblano peppered Jasmine Rice and sautéed Swiss chard
Roasted Peach and Ginger Cookies
Mixed Fruit Summer Spritzer


Click here to see highlights from the 2010 Chicago Preliminary Competition at Washburne Culinary Institute, Feb 2010


The Chicago Park District’s piece on C-CAP’s After School Program.

How to Tourne a Potato

’09 J&W winner cooking with the Exe. Chef from Table 52


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Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) is a national not-for-profit and 501 (C) (3) tax-exempt organization.
All donations are tax deductible to the extent provided by law. C-CAP's Federal Identification Number (EIN) is 13-3662917.

More than 91% of C-CAP's funding directly supports its programs. 

© 2013 C-CAP. All rights reserved.                        250 West 57th Street, Suite 2015 New York, NY 10107. Phone: 212-974-7111.