Pine Richland grad recognized for academic excellence, culinary potential - PineCreek Journal

Pine Richland grad recognized for academic excellence, culinary potential

Tuesday, January 21, 2020 | 9:24 AM

Austin Bryar, a fifth‐quarter student of the American Academy of Culinary Arts (AACA) at Pittsburgh Technical College (PTC) has earned the William Foust Education Scholarship from the American Culinary Federation Pittsburgh Chapter (ACFPC).

An outstanding student in PTC’s culinary arts associate degree program, Bryar is recognized for his continued academic excellence, career commitment, and culinary potential. Bryar will receive his award on Sunday, Jan. 26 at the ACFPC’s formal annual awards dinner hosted this year at the Renaissance Hotel in Pittsburgh, where the ACFPC’s chef of the year also will be announced.

“I’ve always loved to cook and figured out in high school that it was definitely the career path for me,” said Bryar. “I am beyond excited to receive this award. Honestly, I’m shocked. While it validates all of the hard work I’ve already put in, it adds to my motivation to really succeed in the world of culinary arts. There are so many amazing opportunities in Pittsburgh, and the added ACFPC membership is an awesome way for me to learn from and connect with local professionals.”

The scholarship, designed to benefit the future generation of chefs, is named for William Foust, a certified executive chef and oldest member of ACFPC, who passed away in 2007 at age 92. Recipients can choose either to accept a $1,200 academic scholarship toward an accredited culinary arts education, or to attend the annual ChefConnect event, an education and networking opportunity for foodservice professionals. The award also includes a one‐year student culinarian membership to ACFPC. Awarded annually to two recipients, applicants must complete a 1,000 ‐ 1,500 word essay, show proof of acceptance or enrollment in an accredited culinary arts post‐secondary program, and provide two letters of recommendation from an instructor, advisor, culinary industry professional, or professional member of ACFPC.

Bryar’s application included letters of recommendation from Norman P. Hart, chef director for AACA, certified executive chef, certified culinary educator, and member of the American Academy of Chefs honor society; and Chef David Russo, instructor for AACA and supervisor for Bryar’s on‐campus employment. “A big part of why I chose PTC for my post‐secondary culinary education was for the opportunity to learn from such distinguished professionals,” added Bryar. “While you know they’ve prepared meals and desserts for celebrities and dignitaries, in the kitchens at school you can just tell that they truly love what they do and are eager to share their knowledge and experience with the students.”

In his recommendation, Hart noted that Bryar “works hard to achieve goals set by himself and the teaching staff at PTC. I know, with all the dedication Austin shows, he will be a great asset in the culinary profession he so loves.”

Bryar is a 2018 graduate of Pine Richland High School in Gibsonia and attended three years in the culinary program at A.W. Beattie Career Center in Allison Park, where he also worked under Chef Aaron Yurek in the school’s operational dining room, igniting his passion for cooking. While in high school, he was a four‐year member of Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) and earned both a gold award for food and beverage service and a silver award for food art at the FCCLA state competition. While at PTC, he is working in the culinary program storeroom prepping for the chef instructors, stocking orders and updating inventory records. He has earned top grades in his culinary coursework, serves in the AACA.

Culinary Club, and frequently participates in the school’s culinary events and competitions winning Most Unique at the school’s November open house Wing Competition with partner Bryce Booth, for their breakfast‐inspired wing featuring maple bacon.

The American Academy of Culinary Arts at PTC is dedicated to the development of tomorrow’s great American chefs. By emphasizing the classic fundamentals while blending in culture‐current trends and international cuisine, AACA prepares students for career success. For more information about Pittsburgh Technical College, visit

For more information about AACA, visit Pittsburgh Technical College, located in Oakdale, is a nonprofit, academic institution with more than 30 programs that prepare students for career success. For more information about Pittsburgh Technical College, visit

Pittsburgh Technical College is a leading educator in the Pittsburgh region to prepare students for career success, and has the numbers to prove it: 100% of on‐campus degree‐seeking students have internships or clinical rotations before they graduate. It’s this kind of experience that results in consistently high in‐field placement rates of greater than 95%. PTC’s hallmark is academic excellence, grounded in an environment that supports each and every student’s professional and personal journey. The college awards associate and bachelor’s degrees and certificates in these areas: Business, Criminal Justice, Culinary Arts, Hospitality, Design and Engineering Technology, Healthcare, Nursing, Information Systems and Technology, Trades Technology, and Energy and Electronics Technology.