• News Release: Bowie HS Culinary Team Advances to National Competition

    April 27, 2017
    For Immediate Release
    Office of Communications

    UPPER MARLBORO, MD – Bowie High School students won first place in the Maryland ProStart Student Invitational (MPSI) Culinary Competition, advancing to the 16th Annual National ProStart Invitational in Charleston, SC, from April 28 through May 1. This is the first time a team from Prince George’s County will compete in this national competition.


    Seniors Kendall Ashwood-Hayes, Bernard Azongho and Nuri Muhammad and juniors Julia Forbes and Kiron Johnson put their culinary and creative skills to the test, preparing a three-course meal in an hour. The appetizer was St. Kitt's double-fried plantain served with marinated shrimp, diced peppers and a Peruvian sweet chili sauce; the entrée was St. Martin's Caribbean seasoned strawberry grouper served with confetti rice and sauteed haricot verts; and for a sweet finish, Anagada dessert, a deconstructed pine tart with piña colada pastry cream, pineapple reduction, raspberries, pineapple syrup, toasted coconut and raspberry fruit caviar.

    A panel of judges from industry, colleges and universities rated their performance on taste, teamwork, skill, safety and sanitation, and rated it the top out of 16 entries from teams across the state.

    “These students demonstrate the success of our high school academy programs,” said Dr. Kevin M. Maxwell, Chief Executive Officer for Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS). “In just two years, students learn skills they can build on for their future success in their selected fields.”

    The Bowie ProStart team is sponsored by Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Charla Gillespie. The team also placed second in the Management Competition, where they submitted a business proposal for a new restaurant concept, “Rasta Café.” The entry included a written proposal, menu, verbal presentation and visual display. Teams were tested on their critical thinking skills by reacting to potential management challenges related to their concept.

    DuVal High School placed third in the Management Competition. Teams from Bladensburg, Charles Herbert Flowers and Gwynn Park high schools also competed in the event.

    The Maryland ProStart Student Invitational (MPSI) is a statewide team culinary and hospitality management competition. ProStart is a nationwide, two-year high school program that unites the classroom and industry to develop students into restaurant and foodservice leaders.

    The ProStart program, sponsored by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, features classroom study, mentored work experiences and opportunities to earn scholarships and test skills in local and national competitions.

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    Prince George's County Public Schools (PGCPS), one of the nation's 25 largest school districts, has 208 schools and centers, more than 130,000 students and nearly 19,000 employees. The school system serves a diverse student population from urban, suburban and rural communities located in the Washington, DC suburbs. PGCPS is nationally recognized for innovative programs and initiatives that provide students with unique learning opportunities, including arts integration, environmental and financial literacy, and language immersion.