MCHS Culinary Program in Nation's 'Elite 50'
By WestKyStar & MCHS Staff
PADUCAH - For the second year running, Sullivan University has recognized McCracken County High School's culinary arts program among its "Elite 50" nationwide.
MCHS was invited to complete Sullivan's competitive Elite 50 application this spring after being named a Program of Distinction in the fall. McCracken's one of only four high schools or technical centers in Kentucky to receive Sullivan's "Elite 50" designation this year.
"Our students work so hard every day to advance their own culinary skills, and our program shines through them," said Ashley Woodruff, one of three fulltime culinary arts teachers at MCHS.

"To have our program recognized by a distinguished culinary school like Sullivan as one of the 50 strongest in the U.S. is such an honor."
McCracken's culinary arts career pathway has grown into one of the most popular pathways in the school's Family and Consumer Science program. This year over 400 students are taking at least one of the four culinary classes offered at MCHS.
The program's strong enrollment was just one of several factors Sullivan considered when naming their 2019 Elite 50. The application also required schools to submit original recipes with photos of prepared dishes, details about instructor certifications, accolades the program has earned, and opportunities offered to students.
Culinary students at McCracken can test their chops in contests at the regional, state and national levels, and earn valuable credentials including a ServSafe Manager Certification and/or their culinary Kentucky Occupational Skills Standards (KOSSA) certification. A select few students also get to intern with Sara Bradley, owner and chef of Paducah's freight house and 2019 Top Chef Season 16 Runner-Up.
Recent MCHS Culinary Arts program graduate McKayla Siener (Class of 2017) was one of the first students to intern at freight house, and is now in her second year at Sullivan University in Lexington.
Sullivan's National Center for Hospitality Studies (CHS) has earned a reputation as one of the finest hospitality schools in the country with a Five Diamond Award of Excellence presented by Hilton Hotels and AAA Kentucky.

Published 07:47 PM, Saturday Mar. 23, 2019
Updated 07:56 PM, Saturday Mar. 23, 2019

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