“I expanded my professional network and skills, traveled and learned how food changes lives, and connected with students and chefs who were also positively impacted by CHTAEF.”
My name is Blaire Thompson and I am from the beautiful island of Nassau, Bahamas. Being raised in a country that thrives from tourism and hospitality made it quite difficult to not be eager to contribute to the same industry, specifically as a Chef. I first sought this interest in my high school’s Food & Nutrition class, which graduated into food competitions, volunteer events and networking with some of the nation’s culinary leaders.
That incessant effort to learn was recognized by the Caribbean Hotels & Tourism Association Education Foundation (CHTAEF) who awarded me a scholarship to study at a prestigious culinary school, Johnson & Wales University. As I was welcomed into one of the leading organizations in the hospitality industry, I expanded my professional network and skill, traveled and learned how food changes lives, interned at the most magical place on earth, and connected with students and Chefs who were also positively impacted by CHTAEF.
Through CHTAEF, I was constantly reminded not of what my country can do for me, but of what I can do for my country. As a recent first-generation college graduate, I am excited to take on the responsibility of being a young leader in The Bahamas ‘ culinary industry, and ensuring that as my country expands through tourism, we also sustain ourselves through the support of local resources. What CHTAEF recognized in me, as they do with many other young people is how important education is to build better leaders and subsequently a better future for the Caribbean.