In support of a program that allows local students to prepare for careers in the culinary arts field in a city that boasts of some of the world's finest dining establishments, Saints Owner/Executive Vice-President Rita Benson LeBlanc attended the ribbon-cutting and reception on March 22 to commemorate the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts' launch of their new culinary arts program and teaching kitchen.
This exciting new program at NOCCA is collaboration with Chef Emeril Lagasse through his world-renowned foundation. Lagasse, who for 30 years enriched the dining experience in New Orleans as well as worked hard to assist in the advancement of his adopted community, joined the school's faculty and staff at the event to kick off the program.
With the assistance of a $500,000 grant from his foundation to establish the four-year culinary arts program for high school students, a specific curriculum for the program has been established in conjunction with Johnson & Wales University in Providence Rhode Island, Lagasse's alma mater, considered one of the elite culinary schools in the nation. NOCCA will welcome its first class of students to the culinary arts program this fall. LeBlanc spent time with the NOCCA students and faculty, congratulating them on this program, which will allow them to formally train for a career in the culinary field.
Note - Photography taken by Jackson Hill, Southern Lights Photography