Nikki Beeman and Charles Lowery Win Heated Cook-off Competitions at The Art Institute of Las Vegas

By: The Art Institutes

April 6, 2014

Aspiring chefs with a craving for culinary excellence put their kitchen skills to the test as they competed for tuition scholarships on Saturday, March 8, at The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Las Vegas. At the end of the day, two stood triumphant.

Nikki Beeman from Foothill High School, Henderson, NV 89002 took a gold medal and first place in The Art Institutes Best Teen Chef Competition for high school seniors. Charles Lowery placed first – and was awarded a gold medal – in The Art Institutes Culinary Scholarship Competition.

During the cook-off competition, the finalists were asked to showcase their talent and skill by preparing and serving a two-course meal in just two hours. The meal consisted of an appetizer of Shrimp Cocktail and an entrée of Sautéed Chicken Breast with Creative Garnish, Rice Pilaf and Broccoli Sauté.

Competitors were judged on five technical skills including knife skills, safety, sanitation, organization, cooking techniques, and clean-up, and five qualities of the finished dishes – temperature, taste, texture, portion size and presentation.

Beeman was awarded a $4,000 tuition scholarship and Lowery a $1,500 tuition scholarship to The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Las Vegas. In addition, the first place winners in both categories will move on to be considered for a Chopped-style cooking competition in New York in April. The winner of that competition will receive a $40,000 tuition scholarship.

Winners’ Quotes:

Nikki Beeman: “I enjoy the happiness food brings [to] people. The memories they have with food are something you can only accomplish with cooking. I want to become a chef and bring people that joy.”

Charles Lowery: “[I hope to] travel the world cooking and creating great cuisine.”

Cook-off competitions were held at all participating International Culinary Schools at The Art Institutes locations across the U.S. and Canada in March. In addition to earning their scholarship awards, all local Best Teen Chef first place winners will have the opportunity to win a trip to New York City for a very special food experience.

For more information, visit or contact The Art Institute of Las Vegas at 702-992-8549.

The Art Institute of Las Vegas

The Art Institute of Las Vegas is one of The Art Institutes, a system of over 50 schools throughout North America. Programs, credential levels, technology, and scheduling options are subject to change. Several institutions included in The Art Institutes system are campuses of South University or Argosy University. The Art Institute of Las Vegas 2350 Corporate Circle, Henderson, NV 89074-7737. ©2014 The Art Institutes International LLC.

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By: The Art Institutes

April 6, 2014