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IRA Educational Foundation

Educator Resources

ProStart Illinois

If you have not already done so, please register on the NRA Educational Foundation website at (under ProStart Community). This new site, launched in May 2012, has many valuable educator resources and information about implementing the ProStart® program and articulation agreements (see Passport).

Important Dates and Deadlines:

  • Illinois ProStart Invitational® is Saturday, February 23rd at Kendall College (8am-4pm)
  • Job Shadow Day: Wednesday, March 6, 2013
  • IRA Educational Foundation Scholarship Application Deadline: April 29, 2013

2012-13 School Year Information

ProStart® National Certificate of Achievement

To qualify for national certification students must pass the national Level 1 and Level 2 exams; and complete 400 internship hours of industry experience by September 2013. Please encourage your students to track all work hours or to request a printout from the organization that they work for.

New in 2012-13, all 400 internship hours can be unpaid or a combination of paid and unpaid work hours. To apply for certification, educators must submit the ProStart Workplace Validation Form and ProStart® student Competency Checklist.

Illinois Certificate of Achievement

The requirements of the state certificate are 200 paid or unpaid internship hours within the junior and/or the senior year. The same application process is followed.

Exam Administration

All materials for Foundations Level 1 and Level 2 curriculum including answer sheets may be ordered on You and students can also access test results.

IRA Educational Foundation Scholarship Program

All ProStart SENIORS should apply for the scholarship. In 2012, the IRAEF awarded almost $130,000 to students pursuing a post secondary culinary arts or hospitality management degree at 25 colleges across the country. ProStart® students have an advantage in that they get credit for participating in the program during the judging process. 100% of ProStart® students applying in 2012 received scholarships. Application deadline: 4/29/13

Volunteer Opportunities

We are looking for volunteers (teachers and/or students) to assist with the ProStart Invitational. Please contact Jenna Zera at 312.380.4117 or to indicate your interest in volunteering.

ProStart® Program Forms

Please access the following forms as needed.



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