The Caterer has announced the shortlist for the 2018 Acorn Scholarship, a development bursary award first created by previous winners of The Caterer's Acorn Awards.
The 2018 scholar will become the Acorn Scholarship's 16th winner and will pick up the baton from last year's winner Lee Bye, chef-patron of Tuddenham Mill in Suffolk.
The final eight shortlisted candidates will now be asked to prepare for their presentation slots in front of the scholarship judges to be held at the Principal hotel in Manchester on the 27th November 2017.
The finalists are:
- Jamie Broadbent, operations manager, the Devonshire Arms Country House hotel, Skipton
- Amelia Heminway, hospitality and events group manager, BaxterStorey, Visa Group, London
- Andras Lakezi, food and drink manager, the Principal hotel, London
- Cecilia Oldengran, human resources officer, the Trafalgar hotel, St James, London
- Sandra Preciado, assistant events operations manager, the Rosewood, London
- Georgia Stevenson, event manager, Hilton London Bankside
- Camille Vrain, commercial project manager, CH&Co, Reading
- Lisa Wieland, sous chef, Cut 45 Park Lane, Dorchester Collection, London
With a personal bursary of £2,000 to allocate to a development programme and individual coaching from employee engagement specialists Purple Cubed, the total prize is worth more than £5,000.
The 2018 Acorn Scholar will become part of a prestigious Acorn Scholarship alumni with past winners that include Lee Bye, chef patron, Tuddenham Mill; Charlotte Horler, front of house manager, Montague on the Gardens, (Red Carnation Hotels); Daniel McLoughlin, opening project manager of Shoda café & restaurant; Simon Houston, sales director of Bartlett Mitchell, and chocolatier and author Will Torrent.
This year's judging panel consists of Sean Wheeler, director of people development, Principal Hotels; Laura Wigley, global director of learning and talent, Dorchester Collection; Moira Laird, human resources director, Valor Hospitality Partners; Ruston Toms, founding trustee of The PM Trust and director of Blue Apple Contract Catering; Hannah Horler, managing director of Cartwheel Recruitment; Jo Harley, managing director of Purple Cubed; James Horler, CEO, Ego Restaurants and the 2004 Acorn Scholarship winner Jon Reed.
Harley commented: "As a people and talent specialist, I take on the role of coach for our winning scholar each year and the judges and I will be looking for a determinedly ambitious individual, and a leader of tomorrow with drive and passion for our diverse, fast-moving and exciting industry."
The competition presents a young manager, chef, HR manager, sommelier, or any young high-achiever involved in hospitality with the opportunity to make a name for themselves by presenting their skills and ambitions to some of the most respected names in the industry.