$1.1 million helping UH’s Culinary Institute of the Pacific

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HONOLULU (KHON2) — The University of Hawaii foundation raised more than one million dollars to support the Culinary Institute of the Pacific. Officials say this is thanks to Kings Hawaiian and foundations in Hawaii.

According to the university, this will help them hire an executive director who will help lead the Culinary Institute of the Pacific.

“So, we have the academic side there, and then we need someone to help us push forward the direction, and I guess this whole big center that is growing,” said Lauren Tamamoto, coordinator the culinary innovation center.

Tamamoto said the university is currently in phase 2 of their construction, meaning they are in the process of building a demonstration auditorium studio, a signature restaurant and culinary innovation center. 

“That’s why we are going to do more science type classes,” said Tamamoto. “We are going to see what people in the industry right now need, so there might be more professional development here.”

Tamamoto said her background is in math and science, but she fell in love with cooking. She said it’s cool to combine her love for those subjects and to create yummy meals for people to eat.

The university said these additions will give students a more hands-on experience and help them excel in their career after they graduate the culinary program. 

“We have a restaurant that is being built and then the culinary innovation center,” said Tamamoto. “So, this is for students who go above and beyond the two-year program.”

According to the university, construction is expected to be completed fall of 2022.

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