Celebrated Chefs Engage With Capital High School Students Revitalizing a Culinary Arts Program

“One of my jobs is to engage students and parents in projects that will ignite their interests and help keep students in school,” says Heather Sellers, Capital High School’s Site Coordinator for Communities In Schools (CIS).

Sellers, herself a former restaurant owner, developed the cooking curriculum for the program and invited students from the Capital High community to participate. Reaching out to her professional colleagues and friends – some of Santa Fe’s most distinguished chefs and culinary leaders – they collaborated to create a culinary arts program that is inspiring kids to learn and stay in school.

The semester-long program is designed to teach students the fine art of cooking under the tutelage of professionals. Offering students the opportunity to learn skills that link to their own passions and interests has been proven to keep kids engaged in school and on a positive career path. In addition, students were allowed to invite a cooking partner – a parent, friend, or other family member to join in the cooking fun. Encouraging family members to participate in the program helps to increase parents’ involvement in education and in the life of their school – a proven factor in student success in school.

Over the course of the spring semester, each chef taught their students how to prepare unique, signature recipes. Now participates will compete in a “Cook-Off” competition at Capital High School on May 4, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm. The teams’ culinary masterpieces will be rated by the distinguished group of judges.

“Culinary Arts is a fabulous career path for some of our students who love to cook and be creative with their cooking. In addition, Santa Fe is blessed to have so many terrific restaurants and job opportunities,” Sellers explains. In addition, Sellers is working to forge a partnership with the Culinary Arts Program at the Santa Fe Community College and is currently collaborating with Michelle Chavez, Director of the SFCC program to design a future cooperative arrangement, which would allow a smooth transition for students participating in the Capital High Culinary Arts Program to the Santa Fe Community College to further their studies and career paths.

In her position as Site Coordinator for Communities In Schools, Sellers brings community people and resources into the school to provide whatever students need to empower them to stay in school and succeed. Those needs may include academic tutoring, social services, counseling, health services, and basic needs or events like the “Cook-Off” that inspire students to embrace school.

This event is open to the public, so don’t miss the fun, excitement and fiery competition.   Join the students, chefs, and celebrities in this Cook-Off grand finale.

Event Date – May 4, 2017, 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Capital High School

Capital High School

Address: 4851 Paseo Del Sol, Santa Fe, NM 87507
Phone: (505) 467-1000
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