In addition, for the first time in the competition’s history, $12,000 in cash prizes will be awarded to outstanding students, teachers and ProStart programs across California, courtesy of BJ’s.
“The generosity of BJ’s will make it possible for these schools and instructors to continue striving for excellence in their culinary and management programs,” CRAEF Executive Director Alycia Harshfield said. “It is a momentous opportunity to establish a cash award program within this event, and we’re deeply appreciative of BJ’s Restaurants and its foundation for making this possible.”
The BJ’s Restaurant Management Cup involves student teams from around the state developing and presenting a business proposal for a new restaurant concept, including a supporting menu, a marketing plan and a detailed design. A panel of foodservice professionals will serve as judges, including Rob DeLiema, president of BJ’s Restaurants Foundation, and BJ’s Corporate Executive Chef Ray Martin.
“ProStart students are the future of our industry, and the talent we’ve seen at the competition is tremendous,” said Rob DeLiema, president of BJ’s Restaurants Foundation. “In addition to our title sponsorship, we are proud to offer these cash prizes not only to deserving students but also to their teachers and schools.”
The winning team will be sponsored to compete in the 2012 National ProStart Invitational April 27-29 in Baltimore, Maryland. First-, second- and third-place teams also will qualify for scholarships to various culinary and hospitality post-secondary programs.
About the California Restaurant Association Educational Foundation: CRAEF has awarded more than $1 million in scholarships and grants since its inception in 1981. CRAEF works to enhance education and training programs within the hospitality industry. ProStart is a two-year program designed to prepare high school juniors and seniors for exciting careers in foodservice.
About BJ’s Restaurants Inc.: BJ’s Restaurants Inc. owns and operates 115 casual dining restaurants under the BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse or BJ’s Pizza & Grill brand names. BJ’s restaurants offer an innovative and broad menu featuring award-winning, signature deep-dish pizza complemented with generously portioned salads, appetizers, sandwiches, soups, pastas, entrees and desserts. Quality, flavor, value, moderate prices and sincere service remain distinct attributes of the BJ's experience. For more information, go online at www.bjsrestaurants.com.