ACF Opportunity for Culinary Students & Apprentices – Deadline May 1st

American Culinary FederationContestsACF Opportunity for Culinary Students & Apprentices – Deadline May 1st

Dear ACF Chapter Presidents, Officers and Contacts:

The American Culinary Federation (ACF) has a unique opportunity for culinary students and apprentices. We need your help in spreading the word to them about the Lead Like “Mike” contest.

ACF students and apprentices are invited to enter the Lead Like “Mike” Contest by May 1 for the chance to access culinary leaders and top-notch networking opportunities at the 2013 ACF National Convention in Las Vegas. One student or apprentice will be selected to attend convention and be mentored by ACF National President Michael Ty, CEC, AAC, July 21-25. This individual will experience ACF’s national convention from the president’s perspective, from attending behind-the-scenes meetings with board members and sponsors to the lavish American Academy of Chefs dinner.

Applications are due May 1st. Five finalists will then be selected for phone interviews. The winner will be announced by June 7, and will receive airfare to Las Vegas within the continental U.S., Hawaii or Alaska, accommodations at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas and a full convention registration. Click here to download the PDF Application form.

Applicants must be:

  • A first-, second- or third-year full-time culinary student enrolled in either a degree-granting, diploma or certificate postsecondary culinary program, or an ACFEF Apprenticeship Program.
  • An ACF member in good standing (dues paid) since January 31, 2013.
  • At least 18 years old.
  • Available July 20–26, 2013.
  • Organized, punctual and personable.
  • A leader who can communicate well with diverse groups and maintain a professional image.

To enter, the following needs to be submitted:

  • A completed and signed application.
  • A 500-word essay in English, no smaller than 12 point font, describing how this mentoring opportunity will help you achieve your goal of being a culinary leader. The essay must be an original work and should not reference Michael Ty more than twice.
  • A high-resolution color photo in appropriate chef apparel.
  • A signed letter of endorsement from your department chair and/or school/apprenticeship director on official letterhead.

Last year’s winner, Brett Brennan of Grand Island, N.Y., is a culinary-arts student at Niagara County Community College, Sanborn, N.Y., and member of ACF of Greater Buffalo New York. For Brennan, the experience of learning from Ty was indescribable. “This was my first national convention, and to tell you the truth, I walked into it with an open mind and walked away speechless,” said Brennan. Kristin Swaggart, CC, 2011 winner, is a member of ACF Northwest Wine Country Chapter. She went on to graduate from Walla Walla Community College, Walla Walla, Wash., in June 2011, and is now assistant director of nutrition services at Kennewick School District for Sodexo USA, Kennewick, Wash. She attributes this mentorship as a large part of why she received the job.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you or your students have any questions at, or (800) 624-9458 ext. 147 or (904) 484-0247.


Patricia A. Carroll
Director of Communications
American Culinary Federation, Inc.


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