Thanks to a benefit that was held on February 26, 2002, a program that has already helped many high school students throughout the United States to further their education and find food industry careers will have additional financing to continue its much-praised efforts. C-CAP, the Careers Through Culinary Arts organization, packed in a crowd of supporters at its annual fund-fundraiser, which is traditionally a colorful and enjoyable function that reflects the broad support acquired since its founding in 1990.

Picture the set-up at Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers in Manhattan, with rows of tables manned by representatives of many of New York's finest restaurants, all offering tastes of enticing dishes. The choices were impressive and varied. There were also many tables with an array of desserts, another section that served wine, and one with champagne. The experience was a gourmet's delight, thanks to the contributions of the restaurants and others in the food service industry that have supported the program.

This time the honoree was Jacques Pepin, internationally noted chef and television cooking star. He was saluted for "his dedication to excellence, his outstanding contributions to America's culinary landscape and his commitment to future generations of young chefs." Al Roker of NBC was the master of ceremonies, and the event was chaired by Barbara Fairchild, editor-in-chief of Bon Appetit.

C-CAP was founded by Richard and Susan Grausman and since 1990 has awarded more than $8 million in scholarships. It reaches more than 10,000 students in 200 schools in New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Norfolk and Virginia Beach and Phoenix and Tucson. For more information call 212-873-2434 or visit C-CAP's website at

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