From education to employment

AA College Restaurant of the Year Award returns for 2022

The AA College Restaurant of the Year Award, which recognises the hard work of chef lecturers and student brigades that run college restaurants, returns for 2022 and has now opened for entries.

The People 1st International-sponsored award is open to colleges that have received People 1st International accreditation – a stamp of approval that recognises colleges that deliver excellent full-time or classroom-based hospitality training and qualifications – and that also hold an AA College Rosette for their restaurant.

Returning after a two-year break during which college restaurants were forced to close due to the pandemic, this year’s competition sees a potential 20 college restaurants join the battle to be crowned AA College Restaurant of the Year.

Sean Wheeler, People & Culture Consultant and Chair of the Hospitality Employer-Led College Accreditation Board, comments:

“Accredited colleges have demonstrated resilience and determination throughout the pandemic to continue to produce the best students and cultivate their passion for the industry. This competition is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the incredible work they do.”

Sandra Kelly, UK Director, People 1st International adds:

“Now more than ever, its critical we nurture these students who are dedicated to a career in hospitality so we can build a strong pipeline of skilled talent into the industry.

“When we surveyed students from accredited colleges last year, the results clearly demonstrated their unrelenting passion for the industry, with 86% of hospitality students remaining committed to a career in hospitality.

“The College Restaurant of the Year Award is an opportunity to sustain their enthusiasm and recognise the efforts of chef lecturers.”

Simon Numphud, Managing Director, AA Hotel Services, said:

“We’re delighted to partner with People 1st International again to reinstate the AA College Restaurant of the Year Award. Together, our accreditation schemes recognise the colleges across the country that produce top quality talent, armed with the skills that hospitality businesses really need.  This is a great opportunity for the students to practice and showcase their skills – best of luck to all involved!”

The colleges that successfully make it through the first round of the competition will go head-to-head at a judging day at J W Marriott, Grosvenor House in London. The three finalist teams will then be invited to the AA Hospitality Awards on September 26 2022, where the winner will be announced.

Accredited colleges are now invited to submit an application to be considered for the 2022 AA College Restaurant of the Year Award. There is also still time for colleges to become accredited before the competition deadline – to find out more, visit

Related Articles