Shreja Patel from La Plata High School Credit: Restaurant Association of Maryland

La Plata High School’s Shreja Patel has been named the 2022/2023 Student of the Year by the Restaurant Association of Maryland Education Foundation (RAMEF). The award will be presented at the Restaurant Association of Maryland’s (RAM) annual Awards Gala on March 26, 2023. Shreja is being recognized for her outstanding work and dedication to the ProStart program, which provides high school students with the knowledge, skills, and opportunity to begin their journey toward becoming tomorrow’s restaurant and food service leaders.

Mary Winkler, an educator at La Plata High School, praised Shreja for her positive attitude, work ethic, and ability to motivate her classmates. “Shreja responds so positively to critique and advice when working. Her positive attitude is infectious. When other students are frustrated or disengaged, Shreja exudes a work ethic that infiltrates the rest of the group,” said Mary Winkler.

Representatives from RAM visited La Plata High School earlier this week to invite Shreja to receive her award at the Gala next month. The event will celebrate Maryland’s foodservice and hospitality industry and recognize the contributions of educators, students, and other industry leaders.

From left to right: Mary Winkler, Olivia Aberdeen, Shreja Patel, Tajala Battle-Lockhart, Douglass Dolan Credit: Restaurant Association of Maryland

Dr. Lorna Browne from Howard High School in Howard County was also recognized as the 2022/2023 ProStart Teacher of the Year recipient. She will also be invited to accept her award at the RAM Gala next month. RAMEF aims to enhance the food service and hospitality industry’s training and education, career development, and community engagement. The ProStart program is critical to this mission, providing students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the industry. Olivia Aberdeen, Education & Apprenticeship Coordinator at the Restaurant Association of Maryland, praised the program for its ability to expose students to the many different pathways available in the industry.

“To be able to identify an educator and scholar that has been noticed by not only their peers in the building but their community is a privilege. We’re all still recovering from Covid, so any opportunity we get to show that hard work doesn’t go unnoticed, we take it,” she added.

The Restaurant Association of Maryland and RAMEF congratulate both Shreja Patel and Dr. Lorna Browne on their awards and wish them continued success in their future endeavors.

David M. Higgins II, Publisher/EditorEditor-in-Chief

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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