Oregon ProStart Culinary Championships

Sunday, February 19, 2017 | Salem Convention Center, Salem, Oregon

Congratulations to McMinnville High School (pictured) taking first place overall at the 2017 ProStart® Culinary Championships! Oregon ProStart culinary students from 14 high schools from across the state competed in the statewide event, tasked with creating a three-course gourmet meal using only two butane burners and without the benefit of electricity. 

See McMinnville in action on KGW's Portland Today.

McMinnville students won a share of $160,000 in academic scholarships and earned a spot to compete in the National ProStart Invitational April 28-29. McMinnville High School’s winning menu included Dungeness crab miso custard, Thai shrimp cakes, and bittersweet truffle torte. Read the press release for more information on the 2017 event.

View event photos on Flickr

2017 Event: News
2017 Event: Award Recap
  • 1st Place: McMinnville High School
  • 2nd Place: Bend High School
  • 3rd Place: Sabin-Schellenberg Center
  • 4th Place: Tualatin High School
  • 5th Place: Willamette High School
Best Overall Teamwork: McMinnville High School
Foster Farms Student of the Year: Marya Agatucci, Bend High School
Teacher of the Year: Molly Ziegler, Bend High School
Mentor of the Year: Andrea Phillips, Tualatin High School The ProStart® Culinary Championships is the yearly capstone project for the career and technical education (CTE) foodservice training program, ProStart. Coached by teachers and professional chefs, ProStart teams demonstrate their mastery of skills in seven categories of the fast-paced competition. Points are based on many criteria including complexity of their menu, taste, presentation, knife skills, and teamwork.

“ProStart students learn skills - such as teamwork, communication, and decision making - that are important to success in any career they choose to pursue. They also gain a tremendous amount of self-confidence. This event is their capstone project, and it is as exciting to watch as any sports tournament,” says Wendy Popkin, executive director of the Education Foundation for the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLAEF.) As a career and technical education (CTE) curriculum, ProStart also teaches specific culinary and management skills needed by Oregon’s fifth largest employer, Leisure and Hospitality, as its 2nd fasting growing industry.

Currently 36 Oregon schools, with more than 3,000 students participate in the ProStart training program. Internationally, ProStart includes 137,300 students in 1,768 schools and technical centers across the United States, Guam, Europe, and Asia.

For more information on how you can participate as a volunteer or support this program in other ways, contact Wendy Popkin, executive director, ORLA Education Foundation, at 503.682.4422.