Cynthia Carris

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Les Dames Awards Scholarships

Beverly Stephen / July 19th, 2013

Les Dames d’Escoffier of New York awarded 23 scholarships to students pursuing careers in the culinary and hospitality fields at a reception held last week at the International Culinary Center.

Participating colleges this year included ICC, Cornell, New York University, The Culinary Institute of America, the Institute of Culinary Education, Montclair State University, City University of New York: City Tech and Kingsborough, and the International Wine Center. Scholarships ranged from $1,500 to $5,000. The bulk of the scholarship money comes from the Les Dames membership. Corporate scholarships were donated by the American Roland Company, Melita, and the Society of Wine Educators.

Scholarship applicants write an essay describing their achievements and career goals as well as their qualifications. Some of the student’s ambitions are entrepreneurial, such as owning a bakery or a chocolate shop. Some wish to become chefs, sommeliers, restaurant managers, or educators. Others are inspired by nonprofit ideals, such as working to promote sustainability or to improve health and nutrition and prevent obesity. Some are typical young students; others are career changers or are already mothers balancing family life, work, and studies. One changed her major from criminal justice to culinary arts; another left a career as a media buyer; yet another was a lawyer. “The preparation and dedication they give to shaping their future career,” says LDNY president Margaret Happel Perry, “tell us they will, indeed, change the world, our industry, and the lives of others.”

Hors d’oeuvres for the reception were prepared by ICC’s catering and events department and included bite-size lobster rolls and crab cakes with coconut and mango chutney, heirloom tomato tarte Tatin, and duck confit quesadillas. A small plates station traveled from Spain with asparagus tips with Romesco sauce, spiced Marcona almonds, and Sherry-and shallot-grilled chicken pinchos to Greece with tzatiki to Italy with grissini and bruschetta.