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Students Compete for Scholarships in Sullivan, NASA Culinary Challenge


Sullivan University in Louisville, Kentucky has teamed up with NASA to give high school teams a chance to win college scholarships while creating tasty recipes for crew members on the International Space Station (ISS). 

The NASA Hunch Culinary Challenge is a competition born of a partnership between the Sullivan University College of Hospitality Studies Culinary Arts Program and NASA’s HUNCH program.

Selected high school cooking teams produce recipes judged by Food Lab personnel, industry professionals, and astronauts for quality and taste. The winning entry will then be served to ISS astronauts in space.

Culinary Challenge

The theme for this year’s challenge is healthy comfort food, and everyone is excited to see what these young teams can come up with, considering that dehydrated meals in space tend to be lacking in flavor.

Apart from creating these dishes, the students must include calorie counts, nutritional information, and a written description of the food. University chefs will recreate the food items and meet with each team virtually to assist in further developing the final version of the recipe.

“People often compliment a great dish by saying that it’s out of this world. This competition is a chance for students to create a dish that is truly out of this world,” said Chef David Hendricksen, Dean of the College of Hospitality Studies. 

Sullivan Scholarships

Sullivan University Regional Chef Representative Domonic Tardy stated that Sullivan is the first university involved with the food competition to offer college scholarships as a prize. 

“We are able to support the students and partner with something as amazing as NASA to make a difference in students’ lives. These students get to create a recipe and the winning meal goes to space,” Tardy said.

“It has been a great honor to be involved in this program. To be able to involve Sullivan University and help connect with students and change their lives is something I cannot describe,” he added.

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