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Grayson College Faculty Make a Difference

Grayson College Faculty Make a Difference

It’s typical for Grayson College faculty to connect students to their paths and help them complete both their academic and professional goals. There are times, however, when faculty members have the opportunity to mentor students and develop a lifelong connection. This is an opportunity for us to celebrate one of those times.

Culinary Arts Student, Sarah Dilling has been named the Young Chef for the month of January by the American Culinary Federation (ACF). This award is given to only one person in the nation each month. This month’s award theme was mentorship, and here’s what Sarah had to write about her mentor, Chef Joanna Bryant:

“Chef Bryant was the first person I met when I started my culinary education at Grayson College. Not only has she trained me so that I can ever improve in the kitchen, but she also helped create the path for me to enter college early. I was home schooled on a farm in Oklahoma and graduated high school at 15. When I was fourteen, Chef Bryant worked with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to allow younger students to enter the program. Now thanks to her, I will have a Culinary AAS and Hospitality Management AAS degrees at the age of eighteen.

“I found out that Chef Bryant nominated me for the President’s Award at Grayson College, which is given to a few graduating students each semester based on their commitment to the campus and the community. I won the President’s Award, and I am thankful to Chef Bryant for giving me the opportunity to learn and study under her.”

Chef Brant is proud of her student. “She deserved it! The prize is a trip to the national conference. I may need to go with her!”

Sarah and Chef Bryant have worked together many times helping non-profit organizations such as the Child and Family Guidance Center of Texoma, Women Rock Inc. for breast cancer, Reba McIntyre’s Ranch House, and the Texoma Health Foundation. Sarah has also had the opportunity to work with Chef Bryant and Chef Robert Irvine at the American Airline’s SkyBall benefiting many veterans’ organizations.

Sarah has twice competed in the Baron H. Knowledge Bowl in Hawaii and Chicago earning an ACF silver medal in Chicago. She will represent the State of Texas in the student team competition in Wisconsin in February. Sarah added, “Chef Bryant has taught me what it means to be a mentor, which I plan to pass on to others throughout my career and life.”


Sara Dilling and Faculty