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    Alejandro Martinez, the outgoing state vice president of California FHA-HERO, gives a plaque of appreciation to Chef Eyad Joseph, academic director of the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire. The International Culinary School hosted the Professional Food Cooking portion of the FHA-HERO state championship competition Sunday, April 13.

    (SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.) FHA-HERO, an organization for high school students interested in careers in home economics-related fields, will hold a state level competition in commercial food preparation Sunday, April 13 at the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire.

    The California Association of FHA-HERO will hold this competition from about 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. This, and 20 other competitions being held the same day in Riverside, is part of the 2008 California Association FHA-HERO State Leadership Meeting scheduled for April 12-15 in Riverside.

    “FHA-HERO provides students with the opportunity to gain leadership, citizenship and career skills,” said Janice DeBenedetti, state FHA-HERO advisor. “We are pleased to have the assistance of the staff of the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire in showcasing and rewarding the talents of some of the top high school chefs in the state.”

    Students who will be competing in the Commercial Food Event at the Art Institute of California-Inland Empire are enrolled in either Culinary Arts or Food Service and Hospitality programs at their high schools, DeBenedetti said These programs introduce them to careers in the food service or hospitality industry, and they could further their training at a college such as the International Culinary School.

    Student competitors will demonstrate their knowledge and skills using appropriate food service procedures and tools, as well as work habits measuring up to industry standards.

    The other state final competitions being held Sunday take place at the Riverside Convention Center, Marriott Hotel and the Mission Inn. These include other food-related competitions, as well as competitions in clothing, child development, hospitality, tourism and recreation, interior design, and other areas.

    Also to be held in Riverside, at the Convention Center, are a banquet on Monday, April 14 and an awards ceremony/installation of officers on Tuesday, April 15.

    FHA-HERO is the co-curricular leadership and career development component of the Home Economics Careers and Technology (HECT) educational program in California. More than 300,000 students are annually enrolled in HECT programs throughout the state. FHA-HERO provides students with the opportunity to gain leadership, citizenship and career skills. FHA-HERO is coordinated and sponsored by the HECT Education Staff of the California Department of Education.

    The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Game Art & Design, Culinary Management, Graphic Design, Web Design & Interactive Media, Interior Design, Fashion and Retail Management and Media Arts & Animation. There are also Associate of Science degrees in Graphic Design and Culinary Arts. Each program is offered on a year-round basis, allowing students to work uninterrupted toward their degrees.

    It’s not too late to start classes. Courses begin May 8, with offerings in the days, evenings and on weekends for new and reentry students. For details or a tour of the campus call (909) 915-2100, or go on line to artinstitutes.edu/inlandempire.

    The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire is one of The Art Institutes (artinstitutes.edu) with 40 educational institutions throughout North America providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals.


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