Student Committee

The RCA Student Committee is comprised of four leadership positions with supporting members who are committed to driving the organizations student initiatives and setting its future direction under the advisement of the RCA Board of Directors. 

2018 RCA Student Elected Representatives 


Melinda Russell   
Student Committee Chair

Melinda Russell serves as the Chair of the RCA Student Committee. She is currently a senior at Clemson University and is majoring in Food Science and Technology with an emphasis in Culinology®. She has completed a summer culinary internship at P.F. Chang's as well as a research and development internship at Perdue.  Read below to learn about her goals for the RCA Student Committee.

"I am excited to get RCA students involved. I want to help students become leaders by getting them involved in organizing activities in their respective regions. Also, I aim to spread the word to students about the benefits of membership, and increase student attendance at the conferences."  


Amadeaus Ahnah   
Vice Chair/Marketing Committee Chair

Amadeaus Ahnan, or Ando for short, serves as the Vice Chair/ Marketing Chair of the RCA Student Committee. He is currently pursuing his PhD in Food Science at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Read on to find out why he decided to join the RCA Student Committee.

"I recently joined the RCA Student Committee because of the opportunity to bridge the food science and culinary arts worlds. I love both and I believe we can provide more safe, healthy, sustainable, and affordable delicious food products or services from the synergy of both expertise."


Jordan Clark   
Education/Competitions Chair

Jordan Clark serves as the Education/Competitions Chair for the RCA Student Committee. He is currently pursuing a Culinology® major and a Nutrition minor at Southwest Minnesota State University while also serving as the Vice President of the Culinology® Club at school. Read on to learn what Jordan is most excited to pursue as the Education/Competitions Chair. 

"I am excited to hear student's thoughts on the competitions. What do they like about the competitions, what do they dislike. What are the hardest parts, and how can we provide them with more resources to go seek out these answers? How can we elevate the competitions and increase the number of teams competing? And I want to make students aware of more educational resources to help them learn: through TV series, blogs, articles, and podcasts."


Stephanie Sokol   
Regional Chair

Stephanie Sokol serves as the Regional Chair of the RCA Student Committee. She is currently a senior at Framingham State University in Framingham, Massachusetts. Read below to learn about what she is most excited to pursue this year with the Student Committee.  

“I am the only current student at Framingham State to be a member of RCA, it is my goal this year to get more people involved not only from my own campus but others around. I am also very excited to attend the conference this year, I have never really traveled much so I’m hoping to learn and explore in Savannah!”

Jaime Mestan, CSC®   
Student Committee Board Liason
Director of Bistro Products - Vienna Beef Ltd.

Get Involved- Join the Student Committee Today!

Join us in creating the future of food by getting involved with the RCA Student Committee. If you are a RCA student we would love to have you join the RCA Student Committee! Please contact Melinda Russell and your name will be added to the roster. Student Committee calls are held once a month on the forth Friday of each month at 12:00 p.m. CT. If you are interested in helping with the below initiatives please let us know.

The Student Committee is currently pursuing the following initiatives:

  • Planning student events at a regional level
  • Promoting the Evolution of Waste Competition and encouraging submissions
  • Recruiting students from every RCA recognized school to join the Student Committee
  • Publishing blog posts to The Culinologist, a place where students, professionals, and food geeks share their food interests
  • Creating and establishing a student presence on RCA social media platforms
  • And more!

Questions? Contact us at or at (312)321-6861.