Mentors are Critical to the Future of Our IndustryMtSi 042

As with many programs, a key component of the learning experience is the connection between the student and those who are already working in the field. We are an advocate of this philosophy and have incorporated a mentor element of the ProStart curriculum. Our mentors have made a significant impact on lives and their businesses have thrived as a result.


What is a Mentor?
As a mentor you will have the ability to play different roles in the lives of our ProStart students and educators. Mentors help students make the connection between their present performance and their future. They provide overall support for student goals, careers, competence, and character/career development.

Mentors come from a variety of backgrounds, time commitment levels, and businesses. Typically mentors break down into two different categories, culinary and management, just like our ProStart program. Expertise can range from marketing and business skills to culinary techniques and menu engineering. Mentorship takes form in a variety of ways as well. A mentor can focus on helping the students prepare for competition, or a smaller ongoing mentorship could include the following:

  • Hosting a tour of your business or your vendor’s facilities.
  • Inviting the students to work/intern at your business.
  • Visiting the school or speaking to students in a relevant setting.
  • Offering focused introduction, training in specific tasks, or processes such as cheese-making/tasting, pastry arts, vegetarian menus, sustainability, menu costing, or your areas of expertise.

What Are the Benefits? 

Chef Jamie Callison, Chef Steven Walk and Chef Dan Theissen at the 2012 Boyd's Coffee ProStart Invitational

Chef Jamie Callison, Chef Steven Walk and Chef Dan Theissen at the 2012 Boyd’s Coffee ProStart Invitational

You will find mentoring to be a fulfilling experience, not only personally but professionally in a variety of ways:

  • Play an important role in a students life
  • Contribute to the future of the hospitality industry
  • Gain motivated student employees who are focused on a career in the industry
  • Groom potential employees by creating a rewarding work experience
  • Gain community awareness by giving back

Thinking about becoming a mentor? Great! Just contact us here and we’ll get you connected.