GMIT culinary arts students win twenty four medals in national Panel of Chefs/Catex competition

GMIT Hotel School students have won an impressive 24 medals — eight gold, eight silver, and eight bronze — in the national Panel of Chefs CATEX competition, held in Dublin recently.

Two GMIT students, Kevin Ward from Athlone and Avril O'Connor from Ballinahown, Co Galway, scooped the overall Grand Prix award in the competition’s Pastry Challenge and will represent Ireland in the world confectionery competition in Paris next April (2012 ).

Chef Ireland/Catex is an international competition run biennially, involving senior and junior teams from Ireland Germany, Finland, and Italy.

GMIT’s gold medal winners are Adrian Paczynski, Yulia Babikova, Padraic Keane, Emma O’Loughlen, Paula Stakelum (two gold ), Avril O’Connor, and Kevin Ward.

The silver medals winners are Anthony Kelly (three silver ), Gerry Luskin, Padraic Keane, Stephen McKenna, Kevin Byrne, and Claire O’Loughlen (Ryan ).

The bronze medals winners are Jason Mullins, Declan McGovern, Avril O’Connor, Kevin Ward, Anthony Kelly (two bronze ), Nicholas Evans and Liga Jarovoja. In addition, four students each won a Certificate of Merits — Avril O’Connor, Kevin Ward, Anthony Kelly, and Michael Dwyer.

Robert Dagger, head of hospitality and culinary arts in GMIT, paid tribute to the students for their hard work and dedication to their craft, and to the dedicated lecturing team who mentored the students prior to the competitions including Mary Reid, Mairtin Clancy, Martin Ruffley, Frank O’Connor, Sadie Davoren, Ann O’Leary, Maria Conboy, and Noel Loughnane.

GMIT Hotel School is the largest hotel school in Ireland offering tourism education, and is one of Europe’s leading providers of culinary arts and hospitality education. Programmes include culinary arts, tourism, hospitality studies, hotel management, retail and customer service, and event management and public relations.

Cáit Noone, head of the GMIT Hotel School, complimented all who took part in the event. “It is great to see our students achieve this level of success,” she said. “The level of skill they have demonstrated is truly outstanding and we congratulate them and our lecturing colleagues for all the hard work that goes into the development of culinary arts curriculum in the school.”

Culinary arts programmes are delivered on a full time and part time basis in the hotel school. For further information on programmes in the school contact the LINKS office, telephone (091 ) 742565 or see


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