High School Mentoring

What is the Hawaii Culinary Education Foundation (HCEF) Chef Mentoring program all about?

Hawaii Chefs serve as mentors and guides to High School Culinary programs, providing a valuable resource – influencing tomorrow’s culinary leaders.

Chef mentors present real-world knowledge and experiences, coaching students on culinary/professional opportunities and requirements. Chef mentors provide overviews of the restaurant business, employment challenges, and the qualifications needed to become a chef. High School students hear directly from industry professionals exactly what education, work experiences, and skills they look for in bringing on new staff.

Chefs mentors develop interactive activities and culinary demonstrations to engage students in learning by doing such as: flavor development, knife skills, menu concepts / recipe development, culinary / farm tours, and visits to local restaurants and hotels.

Annually high school culinary teachers gather to learn from master chefs. Chef Alan Wong presented the 2015 workshop on local ingredients, flavors, and palate development. Chef Sam Choy will present the June 2, 2016 Educators’ Workshop.

Who are the Chef Mentor Coordinators and How Can My High School Get Involved? Hayley Matson-Mathes, Hawaii Culinary Education Foundation, hawaiiculinaryfoundation@gmail.com


Oahu Chef Mentor coordinator, Fern Yoshida

Hawaii  Island Coordinator, Chef Patti Kimball

Maui Island Coordinator, Chris Speere

Kauai Island Coordinator, Duane Miyasato

High Schools Participating in Hawaii Culinary Education Foundation (HCEF) Chef Mentoring

Big Island:

  • Konawaena
  • Kealakehe
  • Honokaa
  • Hilo
  • Waiakea
  • Kea’au
  • Pahoa
  • Kohala


  • Baldwin (x2 classes)
  • King Kekaulike
  • Lahaina Luna
  • Maui High School


  • Aiea
  • Campbell
  • Castle
  • Kahuku
  • Kailua
  • Kalaheo
  • Kalani
  • Kaimuki
  • Kaiser
  • Kapolei
  • Leilehua
  • Mililani
  • McKinley
  • Moanalua
  • Nanakuli
  • Pearl City
  • Radford
  • Roosevelt
  • Waialua
  • Waianae
  • Waipahu


















Hawaii Culinary Education Foundation

High School Educators Program

logo-hawculWhen: Thursday, June 2, 2:30 – 6:00 p.m.

 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.  Sam Choy’s in the Kitchen           

  • Chef Sam will share his personal culinary journey
  • Offer insight and demonstrate recipes based upon his new cooking show Sam Choy’s in the Kitchen where he goes into homes transforming leftovers into delicious meals
  • Offer practical applications for addressing food waste
  • Talk about menu design, use of local products and why it’s important for the economy
  • Join Chef Sam in a mystery box challenge and make Hawaii Poke



4:45 – 5:00 p.m.

Gas Safety / Uses / Educational Resources

5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Gathering with Chef Mentors 

Enjoy complimentary pupus and beverages

Time for discussion / planning with your individual HCEF Chef Mentor

ChefZone120Where:  ChefZone, 2888 Ualena St., Honolulu, HI 96819

Map/directions:  http://bit.ly/1urNb0o  (by the airport off Lagoon Drive)

Parking available:  ChefZone



There is no fee for program participation

But, you must RSVP to Hayleymm@hawaii.rr.com or 941-9088

The HCEF provides Hawaii’s culinary students and professionals access to cutting-edge knowledge and techniques through programs featuring visiting chefs, educational opportunities, and special fund raising events. The Foundation supports culinary professionals sharing their knowledge with Island students.


Chef Sam Choy – Local Ingredients, Global Tastes

Chef Sam Choy, founder of the Sam Choy Keauhou Poke Contest

Chef Sam Choy, founder of the
Sam Choy Keauhou Poke Contest

Chef Sam Choy has been creating cuisine with fresh, local island ingredients since he was a boy learning to cook alongside his parents.  Before the words “Farm-to-Table” ever came together, sourcing and cooking with the traditional foods of Hawai‘i was a way of life for Sam.

Choy’s native intelligence and culinary creativity led him to co-create and popularize Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine around the globe.

Sam Choy’s Kai Lani restaurant in Keauhou, Kona is partnered with local farmers, ranchers and fisherman to bring Hawai‘i Island’s freshest and sustainably raised food to the table. These local ingredients provide the base for Sam’s unique Hawaiian fusion cooking style.

Recognizing the culinary, cultural and economic value of traditional Hawaiian foods, Choy has become known as the “Ambassador of Breadfruit” in Samoa and Hawai‘i. His original, gluten-free breadfruit recipes and “how to” breadfruit videos are helping to revitalize this delicious and important food.

Sam Choy is as comfortable in front of a camera as he is in the kitchen. As a chef he has appeared on numerous Food Network shows including Chopped: Grill Masters, Iron Chef America and East Meets West with Ming Tsai. He has been a guest star twice on Hawai‘i Five-O, appearing with Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and Carol Burnett.

In recognition of his artistry and commitment to using fresh and sustainable ingredients, Choy is a featured chef at the annual Cooking for Solutions event at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Chef Choy brings his Hawaiian-fresh cooking to significant events for some of the world’s most influential companies including Google and the annual “Big Damn Luau” at Facebook. Sam brings his big heart to the table for causes that are important to him, the UH Seidman Cancer Center, St. Croix Food And Wine Experience benefitting the St. Croix Foundation, L.A. Food and Wine benefiting No Kid Hungry, and Berkley Foundation and Wine to Water benefitting Water Hope in Napa, California. Sam also cooks for U.S. Military men and women on bases all over the world.

Chef Sam Choy is the author of eighteen cookbooks, sixteen with Mutual Publishing and two with Hyperion. In 2004, Choy was awarded the James Beard Foundation Award America’s Classics Award for Sam Choy’s Kaloko in Kailua-Kona, on the Big Island of Hawai‘i. The award recognizes “beloved regional restaurants” that reflect the character of their communities.

Cooking and enjoying good food is a way of life for Sam Choy that grew out of the land and sea of his home in Hawai‘i.  Wherever he is in the world, Sam brings his aloha spirit and unique Hawaiian fusion flavors.