Monroe College Chosen to Host Annual New York State ProStart Culinary Educators Conference on June 17

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Dean Frank Costantino to Demonstrate Proper Knife Cutting and Chicken Fabrication Techniques to High School Culinary Instructors

Monroe College, a national leader in urban and international education, today announced that its School of Hospitality Management and the Culinary Arts has been chosen to host the annual New York State ProStart Conference for high school culinary educators on June 17 at its New Rochelle campus. Instructors from New York high schools that implement ProStart’s curriculum are invited to attend, and over 40 are expected to participate in this year’s conference.

Monroe was chosen to host the conference due to the significant accomplishments of its culinary arts program, and its commitment to offering scholarships to high school students through ProStart’s competitions. As a national program that prepares students for careers in the culinary arts field, ProStart’s curriculum and nationwide competitions provide students with the opportunity to receive National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) scholarships at more than 75 of the country’s leading hospitality and culinary arts colleges and universities, such as Monroe, CIA and Johnson and Wales.

The conference allows high school culinary educators to gain insights and brainstorm ideas on how to improve classroom instruction and prepare their students for a future in the restaurant and hospitality business. It will also equip teachers with useful techniques and tips for their ProStart teams, which compete for the New York State Championship and an opportunity to advance to the National Championship in Kansas City.

The conference will begin on the evening of June 16 with a meal at the college’s student-run restaurant, The Dining Lab. It will officially kickoff the following morning with a continental-style breakfast at Monroe, followed by a tour of the college’s New Rochelle campus, Q&A session, and a cooking demonstration with tips on proper knife cutting and chicken fabrication techniques by Dr. Frank Costantino, Dean of Monroe College’s School of Hospitality Management and the Culinary Arts.

“Being chosen to host the conference this year is largely a reflection of the talent and dedication, from both our students and staff, that has made our program such a success,” said Dr. Costantino. “It affords us a great opportunity to share with high school educators the insights we have gained and methods we have used, both inside and outside of the classroom, in helping our students excel in the culinary field and enter a professional career.”

He added: “We are especially excited to introduce attendees to The Dining Lab, where they will receive an inside look at the work, commitment and culinary skills that embody our student-run restaurant.”

Schools participating in the conference include East Syracuse Minoa High School, Food & Finance High School, Port Richmond High School, New Dorp High School, East Islip High School, Johnson City High School, Sullivan County BOCES, Bronxdale High School, among others.

Monroe College's Culinary Arts program prepares students for professional careers in the culinary field. Taught by a faculty of experienced industry professionals, many of whom are certified by the American Culinary Federation, students gain valuable instruction and mentoring in a real-world culinary environment. Since 2009, the program has received nearly 500 awards, including 15 gold and 10 silver medals at the last three NY state championships, as well as the coveted Marc Sarrazin trophy at the International Hotel, Motel and Restaurant Show in NYC in 2011 and 2013. For more information, please visit here.

Monroe’s culinary school is located at 434 Main Street in New Rochelle.

About Monroe College

Founded in 1933, New York-based Monroe College is a nationally ranked private institution of higher learning with a real world learning approach that prioritizes hands-on academic experiences, practical and relevant academic programs, flexible learning schedules, best-in-class instructional technologies, and committed and engaged faculty to ensure that students are well positioned for career success upon graduation. Monroe College graduates more minority students than any other college in New York State.

Monroe College offers Certificate, Associate, Bachelor's, and Master's degree programs. It has campuses in the Bronx, New Rochelle, as well as in the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia, with programs offered through its Schools of Criminal Justice, Information Technology, Nursing, Education, Business & Accounting, Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts, and Allied Health Professions, as well as through its liberal arts and continuing education programs, and its King Graduate School. For more information and admissions criteria, please visit

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Katharine Rose
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Gina Maffucci
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