Culinary Challenge

In March, twenty collegiate chefs from member institutions displayed culinary expertise as they faced off at competitions held across the country during the National Association of College & University Food Services’ (NACUFS) regional conferences. Six chefs advanced to compete during the NACUFS 2022 Culinary Challenge, sponsored by US Foods, Cintas, and Jennie-O. The individual competitors will face off against the clock to prepare a creative entrée featuring the mandatory ingredient, a whole turkey, to create a nutritionally balanced plate.

Thursday, July 14, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.


The live competition sanctioned by the American Culinary Federation (ACF) begins at the regional level. ACF judges are on hand at all the competitions to judge and provide their expertise, making each event a valuable learning experience. Individual competitors’ creations are judged based on a 100-point scale to rate organization, cooking skills, culinary technique, and taste during the regional and national competitions to determine if they will take home an ACF medal.

The NACUFS 2022 Culinary Challenge winner receives a trophy, $500, and recognition during the National Conference. The winner is also featured in the official NACUFS magazine, Campus Dining Today®.

Midwest Region

Jeremy Cantwell, Notre Dame University

Jeremy Cantwell Headshot

Pacific Region

Thomas Dodd, University of Washington

Thomas Dodd

Continental Region

Leslie LaScola, University of Utah

Leslie LaScale Headshot

Southern Region

Jorge Noriega, University of Georgia

Jorge Noriega Headshot

Northeast Region

Bradley Shannon, Boston College

Bradley Shannon Headshot

Mid-Atlantic Region

James Zeisler Jr., Virginia Tech

James Zeisler Headshot

2022 Culinary Challenge Sponsors

Triple Diamond

US Foods