skip to main content


With national and local support from industry members, educators, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) and state restaurant association partners, ProStart® reaches more than 95,000 students in 1,900 high schools across 48 states, Guam, and U.S. military bases. From culinary techniques to management skills, ProStart’s industry-driven curriculum provides real-life experience opportunities and builds practical skills and a foundation that will last a lifetime.
How ProStart® Works
By bringing together the industry and the classroom, ProStart® gives students a platform to discover new interests and talents to open doors for fulfilling careers. It happens through a curriculum that includes all facets of the industry, and sets a high standard of excellence for students and the industry.
ProStart National Certificate of Achievement
Students who have completed the requirements of the ProStart® program are awarded an industry-recognized certificate – the ProStart National Certificate of Achievement. To earn the certificate, students pass two national exams, demonstrate a mastery of foundational skills and work 400 mentored hours.
Students who receive the certificate are eligible for NRAEF scholarship opportunities and course credits at more than 75 of the country’s leading hospitality and culinary arts colleges and universities.
Classroom Experience:
In-depth learning happens in the classroom.
ProsStart® students spend two years in the classroom mastering the fundamental management and culinary skill needed for success. proStart trains students on industry-specific skill that can be used in all aspects of the restaurant and foodservice industry.
Students also leave the program with employability skills – like leadership, accountability, teamwork and responsibility – that they can take with them to positions in all industries.
Fundamental Restaurant Skills
Students receive training in the following areas:
  • Management essentials
  • Kitchen essentials
  • Customer service
  • Safety & sanitation
  • Communication
  • Marketing
  • Nutrition
  • Purchasing, inventory and cost control
  • Culinary arts
Real-Life Experience
While classroom experience is necessary to learn the foundational culinary and management skills, nothing beats real-life experience gained by working in the industry. ProStart® students learn how to be an industry professional through hands-on work under the direction of a mentor. Mentors help students make the connection between their present performance and their future career.
Real-Life Experience Benefits
During mentored work experiences, ProStart® students master the skills that industry experts identified as critical to success, such as:
  • Knife skills
  • Customer service
  • Cost control
  • Culinary techniques
  • Marketing
Students also learn the importance of arriving on time prepared for work, teamwork and accountability.
Resources for more curriculum/program information:
ProStart® Program Overview
ProStart® Curriculum Objectives PDF doc.