Senator Gillespie and studentsState Senator Ann Gillespie hosted the first annual Great District 214 Culinary Competition Bake-Off on Friday in partnership with Township High School District 214, Harper College, Arlington Heights Memorial Library and the Arlington Heights Chamber of Commerce.

Students enrolled in District 214’s Culinary Arts ProStart Career Pathway program competed in teams for a culinary arts scholarship to Harper College. Teams were evaluated by a panel of judges that included Senator Gillespie and local restaurant chefs and owners that partner with District 214 on their ProStart Career Pathways program.

“Making career and technical education more visible, like District 214’s Career Pathway programs, will highlight affordable alternatives to college that are available to students and give them the hands-on experience they need for success,” Gillespie said. “Congratulations to this year’s winners, and I am excited to see them apply their baking skills at Harper College.”

Senator Gillespie and judges

Winners were chosen in two categories: savory and sweet. Teams from Rolling Meadows High School and Elk Grove High School won this year’s competition with a peach and strawberry scone and an everything bagel babka. The winning teams will share a combined $10,000 scholarship to Harper College’s Hospitality Management program.

Student participants used the Arlington Heights Memorial Library’s new Makerplace facility located at 112 N. Belmont Ave. The Makerplace is open to library cardholders ages 12 and older and features a commercial kitchen, sewing and quilting workshop, two group work spaces, 3D printer stations, and more.