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Hospitality Academy Groundbreaking
Hospitality Academy Groundbreaking
Groundbreaking ceremony for JCCC’s new hospitality/culinary academy is May 22
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Johnson County Community College will conduct a groundbreaking ceremony for its new Hospitality & Culinary Academy at 1 p.m. May 22.
The new academy will be located on the eastern side of the college campus, just south of the Regnier Center.
In February 2010, the Johnson County Community College board of trustees challenged the JCCC Foundation to raise $3 million over 18 months to support the construction of a new hospitality/culinary center on campus. If the Foundation was able to raise $3 million in that time, the trustees pledged to give favorable consideration toward the construction of a new center on campus.
The incentive for this action came through the “Wysong Challenge,” a set of initiatives intended to distinguish JCCC’s hospitality program at national and global levels. Former Kansas Senator David Wysong and his wife, Kathy, announced in May 2008 a $750,000 challenge gift to help raise funds in support of JCCC’s hospitality program, which eventually included the construction of a new facility.
In July 2011, the Foundation met the “Wysong Challenge” by announcing to the JCCC trustees that $3,291,032 had been raised in support of the college’s hospitality and culinary program.
Other funding for the project comes from the college’s capital outlay fund and capital reserves, which are restricted to capital projects.
“We’re grateful to all our donors for their generosity,” said Terry Calaway, JCCC president. “But we especially thank the Wysong family for giving us such a solid basis on which to raise funds. This new academy will provide new opportunities for JCCC’s esteemed culinary program and for the college as a whole. In addition to our credit classes, we’ll have greater opportunities for workforce development and noncredit classes for community members interested in the culinary arts.”
The $12-million, free-standing facility will accommodate the 700 students enrolled in the college’s nationally recognized hospitality management program and provide space for noncredit classes and community activities, including new opportunities for workforce development and partnerships.
Construction of the one-story building begins this spring; the academy will open for classes in fall 2013. DLR Group in Overland Park designed the building; J.E. Dunn is the general contractor.
The 36,000-square-foot building will house seven kitchens – five culinary labs, an innovation kitchen and a demonstration kitchen in a culinary theater – as well as three classrooms.
The five culinary labs include two for professional cooking classes, one for pastry classes, a garde manger or cold foods kitchen, and a restaurant kitchen. The restaurant kitchen will adjoin a dining room on the east end of the building that can be converted to two classrooms as needed.
Hospitality management faculty and staff will be housed in the building within an office suite that accommodates 15 or more people, as well as work space for adjunct instructors, a conference room and a library.
JCCC’s hospitality management program encompasses these different areas: chef apprenticeship, food and beverage management, hotel and lodging management, pastry/baking and dietary management. It is one of only 28 programs recognized by the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation Accrediting Commission (ACFEF) as an “exemplary program,” meaning that it meets the highest educational standards recognized by ACFEF by maintaining consistent compliance with all ACFEF requirements, coupled with excellence in management.
The program’s students are employed in more than 100 locations throughout the metropolitan area as part of their education. JCCC’s is the largest apprenticeship program in the American Culinary Federation; JCCC culinary graduates include well regarded local chefs and nationally known chefs such as Kevin Rathbun, of Kevin Rathbun Steak and Grog Bar in Atlanta, who was named Chef of the Year for 2009 by Chef Magazine.
Over the past few years, JCCC’s culinary program has boasted the National Student Chef of the Year in 2009 and won the National Junior Chef Culinary Team competition in 1997, 1999 and 2002, the only program in the nation to win the championship three times. Students have won six international gold medals at competitions in places like Scotland, Guatemala, Singapore and Dubai (students plan to compete in Brazil within the next two years); the program also had the National Culinary Olympic Team in 2000.