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News Releases @ TCC


First TCC entry into March of Dimes culinary contest



People's Choice

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – (Oct. 30, 2007) – Restaurateurs take note: The people have spoken. Guests attending “Dining with the Stars,” the SYSCO Hampton Roads and March of Dimes 2007 Signature Chefs Auction, voted with their forks, awarding The People’s Choice accolade to Tidewater Community College’s culinary arts entry.


“The People’s Choice Award was one of four major accolades given at the event,” says Chef Deanna Freridge, the TCC culinary arts instructor who led students Benjamin Brant, Keisha Deering, Kristina Goley, Michael Johnson,
James Reed, Scott Richardson, Jernelle Smith, and Yamekah Butler-Winslow in the competition. “That our students won an award with their first entry speaks to their hard work and team efforts.”


A panel of local culinary professionals and restaurant reviewers judged entries in categories from the Dish of Hampton Roads to Most Outstanding Dish to Chef’s Award and People’s Choice Award. The TCC team competed against Hampton Roads’ top chefs including Jerry Weihbrecht of Zoe’s, Christine Zambito of The Sanderling and Kal Habr of Croc’s 19th Street Bistro.


The students prepared an entrée of crisped acorn squash petals accenting bronzed sea scallops set on a bed of braised spinach. A cream sauce flavored with Chèvre cheese and Smithfield ham complemented the scallops, while brandied raisins and frazzled leeks topped off the culinary creation. Chef Freridge explains, “We brainstormed at our first planning meeting, with everyone suggesting possible ingredients that would focus on Eastern Shore foods and autumn themes.”


While providing hands-on experience, the event showcased TCC culinary students’ talents to prospective employers across Hampton Roads. “The Chef’s Auction was a good opportunity for me to network and meet area chefs – the experience is great to put on my resume,” says TCC student Mike Johnson.


TCC also donated a gourmet dinner package to the March of Dimes’ auction. The highest bidder paid $2,600 for a themed meal to be prepared for 10 in the winner’s home.




Laurie White
Media Relations

Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - enrolls over 38,000 students annually, the second largest undergraduate student body in Virginia. The 35th largest community college in the nation, TCC is among the 20 fastest-growing large two-year institutions in the United States. Founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System, the college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in the theater district in downtown Norfolk, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth and a regional Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach. Forty-six percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit