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Inside Kendall

Culinary Student Jennifer Kim Aspires to Be “Almost Famous”

“I wake up and think about cooking,” says Jennifer Kim, a student in the School of Culinary Arts. “I talk about it all day at school. I go home and practice it every night. I go to bed and dream about it. It’s obsessive.”

Jennifer will apply that obsession on January 18 when Kendall College serves as one of 10 regional sites in the 10th-annual S.Pellegrino® Almost Famous Chef® Competition. Representing Kendall, she’ll vie for a coveted spot in the national cookoff in Napa Valley in March and, ultimately, up to $22,000 in prizes and a life-changing apprenticeship with a renowned chef.

The S.Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition serves as a platform for culinary schools to showcase their students’ expertise during a fast-paced, high-pressure cooking competition. And the result is worth it as evidenced by Marco Bahena, a 2011 graduate of the Kendall College School of Culinary Arts and winner of the national title last year, who says the opportunities that have since come his way are significant to his career. “The mentorship and techniques I’ve learned from the participating chefs were invaluable.”

In celebration of its 10th year, the S.Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition will bring back all nine past winners to the finals event March 9-12, 2012 to work alongside the esteemed panel of celebrity-chef judges to mentor this year’s 10 finalists throughout the three days of fierce competition. All finals competitors will be evaluated in three categories: the Mystery Basket, Signature Dish and People’s Choice.

“This competition is well-known for bringing together talented culinary students, and this would be a great opportunity to learn and share new ideas, techniques and flavors with other passionate culinarians,” Kim says.

The highly intense, star-powered weekend will culminate with the announcement of the 2012 S.Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef. This exciting event will be broadcast live via the Almost Famous Chef Competition Facebook fan page, where viewers can vote for their favorite competitor and ask questions of the chef panel as they watch the excitement unfold.

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