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Mastercard supports talented girls in culinary arts in partnership with HRC Academy

The International Association of Professional Chefs JRE-Jeunes Restaurateurs has welcomed Bulgaria with three official members


Mastercard provides an opportunity for young girls from professional high schools in tourism to study Culinary Arts for free, a professional two-year program at HRC Culinary Academy. As part of the program, participants will be offered an organized and paid internship in one of Europe’s top restaurants, members of the international association JRE, which recently accepted the first three Bulgarian chefs.

“In Bulgaria, there are many young talented girls who dream of a culinary career but do not have the financial means to receive the necessary education. The partnership with Mastercard will provide these children with the opportunity to gain knowledge and experience and to practice in some of the world’s best restaurants. I hope that with this step, we inspire other companies to support Bulgarian children from disadvantaged families to get the future they deserve.”

Yoana Mileva, Director of the HRC Culinary Academy

To participate in the competition for full funding of culinary education, candidates must meet the following criteria:

  • A girl aged between 18 and 20 years old, with an interest in culinary arts and good knowledge of the English language;
  • Students or graduates of a professional high school in tourism and public catering;
  • To write an essay in English, with a length of 350 words on the topic “Why I want to receive culinary education and what it will bring me in the future”;
  • To send it to the academy’s email (, along with their names, age, city, and educational institution, no later than April 30, 2024.

The scholarship recipient will be announced on May 15, and her training will begin with the autumn intake at HRC Academy on September 11, 2024.

“Man is what he eats, and chefs have the status of experts on the health and emotions of today’s people. So let’s train chefs the same way we train doctors.”

Vanya Manova, Regional Manager at Mastercard

The role of women in the gastronomy industry is a leading topic in Mastercard’s program. As early as 2020, they announced their commitment to support 25 million female entrepreneurs worldwide for inclusion in the global economy.


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