Select Page

ProStart for Students

Your future in restaurants starts here.

Do you have a passion for cooking? Ever wondered what it takes to operate a restaurant or ever dreamed of owning your own? Then ProStart® is the program for you!

ProStart students complete an industry-backed culinary arts and restaurant management program prepared to join the workforce and make an immediate impact in restaurants and foodservice.

The program’s two-level curriculum teaches practical skills and exposes students to diverse career opportunities. Additional certification, scholarships, and college credits opportunities are available through the connection to ProStart.

A ProStart student cooking.

ProStart Certificate of Achievement

The ProStart National Certificate of Achievement (COA) is an industry-recognized certificate awarded to students who have completed the ProStart program, passed two national exams, and fulfilled 400 hours of mentored work experience.

Why should I earn the ProStart COA?

  • It’s your FIRST credential on your way to many more.
  • It will show future employers that you are serious about a career in the hospitality industry.
  • It demonstrates to others that you have met national standards.
  • It allows you to receive credits to select colleges.
  • It qualifies you to compete for exclusive scholarships designated only for ProStart COA recipients.

ProStart Collegiate Passport

Post-secondary schools across the country offer college credits and scholarships for students who have earned the ProStart COA. To learn more:

Download the National ProStart Collegiate Passport

How to earn the ProStart COA

Earning the COA is a process that complements your time as a student in the ProStart program. Learn how to get started:

7 Steps to the ProStart COA

Visit MyProStart Portal

Access the tools you need to track COA progress, take exams, check scores, and more via the MyProStart Portal. If it is your first time visiting the MyProStart Portal, account setup is required:

Student MyProStart Portal

ProStart Invitational

ProStart students from across Pennsylvania are invited annually to compete in the Pennsylvania ProStart Invitational. This one day event allows students to showcase their skills and talents in two distinct competitions—restaurant management and culinary arts, plus NEW for this year, cake decorating.

This event is our state’s qualifier for the National ProStart Invitational, which takes place each spring in Washington D.C.

Apply for Scholarships

Each year, the PRLA Educational Foundation (PRLAEF) awards thousands of dollars in scholarships to Pennsylvania students pursuing a post-secondary degree in the restaurant, foodservice, and hospitality industry.  Applications for the PRLAEF Scholarship are due by April 1. 

The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) awards more than $1 million in scholarships to individuals pursuing a post-secondary degree in the restaurant, foodservice, and hospitality industry. Applications for the NRAEF Scholarship Program are due by March 15. 

Find Job Opportunities

Pennsylvania’s hospitality industry is hiring! Browse the PRLA Job Board to find career opportunities at all levels of experience available across the state.

Membership Has Benefits

Resources for Hospitality Businesses, Vendors, Sponsors, Students. Membership is for Everyone!