CAFE Weekly News

Apr 1, 2020, 2:10

CAFE Update January 27, 2020

13 February 2020

Hotel Rooms in New Orleans

CAFÉ has contracted for additional room in New Orleans for the Deans and Directors Retreat. We will have the link to the hotel site by Monday or Tuesday. The price is greater than the original block by about $30.

We still have space available (but not many seats left!) for the Retreat. Click here to register.

The theme for 2020 is “A Case for Change.” An important topic as we are at a crossroad regarding technical training. Hope you can come!

Taste of CAFÉ - Free for the First 25 Enrollees!

The first “Taste of CAFÉ”—one day workshop for culinary educators has just received a wonderful sponsorship from ProStart in Alabama! They will pay the $99 registration fee for the first 25 instructors to sign up for the Culinary Educators program at Auburn University, February 21, 8-3 p.m.

Please go to to register for this professional development opportunity which will deal with sustainability, technology, food trends and more!

Linking the Foodservice Industry with the Foodservice Classroom

CAFÉ’s mission has been to link the foodservice industry with the foodservice classroom. How do we do that?

  • Trends presentations at our annual Leadership Conference, including tastings at the opening night reception
  • Useful classroom materials (and not just sales pieces) from our sponsor/partners that are available to attendees at the annual InfoFair
  • Teaching methods and Industry feedback in every issue of “The Gold Medal Classroom
  • Populating CAFÉ’s website with news and industry websites and classroom-oriented videos and a job board
  • Putting on an annual conference that addresses both industry as well as educational best practices. You hear from the chefs; you network with educators from around the U.S. and Canada and you are inspired by your peers who share their challenges and solutions
  • Putting on an annual Deans and Directors Retreat to help match up the top down push with the end results—students prepared for industry


Click here for registration and agenda for the annual Deans and Directors Retreat.

Click here for registration and agenda for the annual Leadership Conference.

Click here to read this month’s Gold Medal Classroom.

Funding an Issue?

Go to the CAFÉ Awards to find out how to apply for and win cash prizes in the areas of:

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovations
  • Educator of the Year
  • Green/Sustainability efforts

Testimonials from the 2019 Deans and Directors Retreat

“The Retreat was fantastic! You know it’s a great event when you look forward to getting back to work to implement what you learned at CAFÉ.”
– David Campbell, SUNY at Cobleskill

“I wanted to thank each of you for the opportunity to teach, learn, and dine with an amazing group of chefs and educators this weekend.”
– Jeffrey Quasha, Morrison Healthcare

“I thought your event was great. Congrats on having a true networking experience that should provide positive results for your attendees.”
– Kevin Ryan, International Corporate Chefs Association

“I truly love being a part of the food industry and in particular-the education segment. What has always intrigued me is the willingness for those engaged in the business to give back.”
– Paul Sorgule, Harvest America

“Thank you for inviting me to the CAFÉ retreat weekend. I had a wonderful time and learned some truly valuable information. I really enjoyed the amazing group of leaders that I met.”
– Chef Fernando Martinez, Brightwater, Northwest Arkansas Com College

“I am writing to thank you for a motivational retreat. I came back to work with vigor and enthusiasm to share what I experienced.”
– Chef Frank Salinas, St Phillip’s College


Cut Off Date for Deans and Directors Hotel
February 27, 2020

Deans and Directors Retreat
“A Case for Change”
March 13-15, 2020, New Orleans

Applications Due for CAFE Awards
April 1, 2020

Awards Announced
May 1, 2020

Cut off Date for Leadership Conference Hotel
May 16, 2020

16th Annual CAFE Leadership Conference
“Innovations and Inspirations”
June 17-19, 2020, Portland, Maine

IPC Seal web

Idaho Potato Commission Innovation Awards

CAFE is proud to be partnering with the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) once again as they sponsor the Innovation Awards for 2020.

This Award recognizes educators and/or programs at both the secondary and postsecondary levels who have shown to be innovative in their approaches to effective culinary arts education.

Examples of innovations can be in the areas of:

  • New programs or
  • New delivery methods or
  • New partnerships or
  • New relations with the local community

Click here for more information about the Innovations Award.

 Kendall NLU RGB

Kendall College Entrepreneurship Award

CAFÉ is proud to be partnering with Kendall College as they sponsor the Entrepreneurship Award for 2020.

This Award identifies culinary programs that either (1) teach or encourage entrepreneurship in their programming or (2) implement revenue-generation and cost savings into their operations.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Open to individuals and all culinary programs
  • Open to secondary and post-secondary schools
  • Include all contact information in your application
  • Entries judged in the areas of quality of design, applicability, replicability, stewardship, success in implementation of the project or concept, impact upon the college and community and thoughtful innovation in practice and technique.

For more information, email Mary Petersen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Sysco web

Sysco Educator of the Year Award

Thanks to Sysco for again sponsoring the Educator of the Year Award for 2020! This award is open to secondary and postsecondary educators as well as culinary educators working within the non-profit training sector. There will be two awards given.

The Committee will be looking for:

  • a description of methodologies that exemplify innovative teaching techniques. Give examples.
  • evidence of the educator’s professional commitment to the educational community and foodservice industry which might include school committee work, professional networking, and community involvement.
  • a resume with the application.
  • descriptions of ongoing professional development in both instructional and technical skills in the last few years.
  • overall evidence that the educator has proven leadership in his/her profession; examples may include peer reviews, student evaluations, letters of recommendation, certificates and honors received, etc.

For more information about the Educator of the Year Awards, click here.


Green Award for 2020

We are pleased to announce that the Green Award will be offered to individuals/culinary programs that emphasize sustainability or other “green” aspects in their programs.

This Award is sponsored by the United Soybean Board who is proud to reach out to educators and to recognize their efforts instructing students in the importance of agriculture in their selection of products and designing of menus.

Past winners have implemented aquaculture farms, gardens, farm-to-table menus, waste reduction and more!

What are your efforts in this area?

The Award is $1,000 plus a complimentary registration to the annual CAFÉ Leadership Conference where the winner will be recognized during the Award Ceremony on June 17th at our host school, Southern Maine Community College in Portland, Maine.

To apply, send your electronic application to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please put Green Award Application in the subject line. There is no application form, but please use a cover sheet with full contact information.

Deadline to submit is April 1, 2020. Winner will be notified no later than May 1, 2020.

For more information, click here.