MATCH Alumni returned to their roots to support incoming sophomores during the MATCH Welcome Banquet last Thursday hosted by MATCH Academy seniors. Richard Tucker, 2011 summer intern for Friendship Transport, Inc., and Evelin Cortez, 2011 summer intern for Tesoro, emceed the Banquet. The incoming sophomores received a great introduction to MATCH’s award-winning program and the business leaders from companies including the Port of Los Angeles, International Cargo Equipment, PCC Logistics, and Good Source Solutions, who work diligently to support them.
New this year, board members attended a private mixer before the Banquet for an opportunity to speak with MATCH faculty about their challenges and needs in the classroom. Immediately following, the group headed to the Banquet where they mixed and mingled with the new class, and reconnected with junior and seniors who they were already well acquainted with. “It is such a pleasure to watch students, like Richard Tucker, develop into confident role models for the younger classes. In a true example of the success of our program, I am excited to see the sophomores grow throughout the next three years.” – Susie Emami, MATCH Program Manager.
The Banquet featured a presentation by Culinary Arts instructor Virginia Marsoobian of the Future Homemakers of America-Home Economics Related Occupations (FHA Hero) Program. Students engage in local, regional and state competitions in various culinary arts categories such as commercial food preparation and culinary arts displays. These competitions allow MATCH students the opportunity to use lessons learned inside the classroom and apply them in a fun and creative way. MATCH students have been competing since 2005 and have enjoyed a great deal of success.
MATCH alumni were on hand to welcome the new sophomores and offer words of wisdom. They explained how participating in MATCH and competing in the FHA Hero competitions changed their lives. Many have attended or are attending culinary programs throughout the U.S. on substantial scholarships won through the various competitions. Alumni who came to the banquet included Amber Jones, class of 2007, who received a scholarship to attend culinary school in Vermont, and Richard Aguero, class of 2007, who received an $85,000 scholarship to attend the Culinary Institute of America in New York.
Special thanks go out to MATCH Lead Teacher Janet Furuya for putting on such an enjoyable event and Patricia Scott, of LAUSD, for her continued support. With dedicated faculty, industry support, and alumni who come back again and again, it is obvious the MATCH Academy “family” bond is very strong. Here’s to another great year of fun, learning, and culinary excellence!
~Food Network Star Jaime Oliver interviewed Rigo Salas, another successful MATCH alumni! Check out the article here!