The important work that C-CAP, the Careers Through Culinary Arts Program, is accomplishing was emphasized once again at the non-profit institution's 2001 Awards Breakfast at Windows on the World in the World Trade Center (June 12), at which students from various New York high schools came forward to accept scholarships that would enable them to get an education toward potential careers in the foodservice industry. There's a special joy in watching this parade of male and female teenagers claim their honors to the cheers of other students and teachers participating in this remarkable program, founded by C-CAP president, Richard Grausman, who gave the welcoming remarks.

Since the program began in 1990, the organization has awarded more than $7.5 million in scholarships in an ambitious effort that encompasses more than 200 public schools nationwide involving some 10,000 students. Numerous scholarship recipients have gone on to take jobs in top restaurants and hotels. Even for those who don't choose such careers, the program has been an important help in fostering a sense of pride in learning to cook and participating in the competitions that determine the scholarships.

In his keynote address, Jason Wallace, president and co-founder of the Black Culinarian Alliance, gave the young people present some straight talk about the challenges they face along with the opportunities and advised them to set long range goals with high standards and to work hard. He urged them to be sure they could apply themselves in this dedicated way if they concluded that a career in foodservice was what they really wanted. Other speakers included Dr. Judith Rizzo, Deputy Chancellor for Instruction of the New York City Board of Education, a co-sponsor of the breakfast and a supporter of the school programs.

Earlier in the year, renowned restaurateurs Sirio and Egidiana Maccioni of Le Cirque 2000 and Osteria Del Circo were honored at a benefit for C-CAP with a high-powered group from among New York's outstanding chefs preparing a tasting of their dishes. The colorful assembly of food for tasting was savored by those attending on February 28 at Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers at West 23rd Street, Manhattan. Television's Al Roker was master of ceremonies.

The list of participating chefs was a veritable who's who among the culinary set, with Marcus Samuelsson of the restaurant Aquavit serving as Chef Committee Chairman.

I have watched C-CAP grow impressively since 1990 from the idea of founder Grausman, former U.S. representative of the renowned Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and the author of the cookbook "At Home With the French Classics." He has dedicated himself to the growth and effectiveness of the C-CAP program, with which leading companies and philanthropists have cooperated. Grausman was honored by President Clinton in 1997 with the President's Service Award, given to those who make a difference as volunteers. Susan Grausman, the founder's wife, is secretary of C-CAP and has been a dedicated participant since the beginning.

For further information phone 212-873-2434. E-mail: info@ccapinc.org Website: www.ccapinc.org)

Return to Previous Page