See Rock City Institute of Hospitality & Tourism Management unveils new kitchen for students at The Howard School
Posted on 03/08/2023
See Rock City Institute of Hospitality & Tourism Management unveils new kitchen for students at The Howard School A sparkling new commercial-grade kitchen unveiled on Wednesday at The Howard School will provide industry quality experience and new opportunities for learning to culinary students in the See Rock City, Inc. Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management Future Ready Institute.

Made possible by See Rock City, Inc., the institute’s branded partner, the new kitchen features modern and robust equipment commonly found in large commercial facilities. By gutting and reimagining a disused and decades-old vocational kitchen space, See Rock City, Inc. is providing students with opportunities to train and learn in an environment much like the ones they will experience when entering the workforce.

“Educating children in Hamilton County is a shared responsibility, and See Rock City’s commitment to the Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management at The Howard School is a great example of how partnerships can help provide access to clean, safe, and innovative spaces that are critical to student learning,” said Hamilton County Schools Superintendent Dr. Justin Robertson. “As we work to see all children thrive and experience a future without limits, this kitchen will open new doors and create unique opportunities for the culinary students in this program to pursue their passions of becoming the next generation of great chefs.”

According to See Rock City CEO Doug Chapin, partnering with Hamilton County Schools as a Future Ready Institute branded partner allows one of the region’s top tourism and hospitality leaders to give back to the community and strengthen the local pipeline for the industry’s workforce.

“We are thrilled about the completion of the new kitchen at The Howard School, which is such a milestone for the students and faculty there,” Chapin said. ”In 2019 we began our partnership with HCS and The Howard School to establish the See Rock City Institute for Hospitality and Tourism Management. Over the past 4 years, the Howard faculty, students, and our team at See Rock City, Inc. have poured their energy and resources into developing an incredible program. To see the kitchen open is such a tangible result of those efforts, and I am so proud that our team got to play a role in helping that become a reality. I know that our team is incredibly excited for the future of our partnership and the impact this program can have for their students, faculty, and our community.”

The See Rock City Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management at The Howard School expands students' knowledge about the industry through experiences at local restaurants, hotels, and other attractions in Chattanooga. Students in this Institute have two different pathways: Culinary Arts and Hospitality and Tourism Management. In Culinary Arts, students focus on cooking, food presentation, and safety and sanitation conditions in a kitchen. In the Hospitality and Tourism Management pathway, students learn how customer service can affect the overall quality of restaurants or businesses. Seniors will be prepared for the exam that leads to a ServSafe Certification or the Hospitality Professional Certification, as well as work toward prerequisite courses for collegiate pathways.

The partnership between HCS and See Rock City Inc. grew out of a desire to expose students to Hospitality and Tourism industry careers. The branded partnership of the Future Ready Institute at The Howard School was initially signed in May 2019.

The idea for a commercial kitchen originated during an advisory board meeting where the culinary teachers shared that students were entering the workforce and struggling to adjust to the work environment because they did not have access to commercial equipment in their Culinary lab. The Institute's advisory board members helped identify the type of equipment needed to prepare students for careers and co-signed on the use of a former commercial kitchen that was included in the design of the former CTE vocational hall at The Howard School.

Hamilton County Schools consists of 79 schools and serves approximately 45,000 students. Future Ready Institutes, sometimes referred to as FRIs, are just one of the options of School Choice provided by Hamilton County Schools. Future Ready Institutes are schools within a school that offer programs of study in a variety of career clusters such as Advanced Manufacturing; Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources; Architecture & Construction; Arts, Audio/Visual Technology & Communications; Business Management & Administration; Education & Training; Health Science; Hospitality & Tourism; Information Technology; International Baccalaureate; JROTC; Law, Public Safety, Correction, & Security; Marketing, Distribution & Logistics; STEM; and Transportation.

See Rock City Inc. is a hospitality and entertainment company that features the world-renowned Rock City Gardens high atop Lookout Mountain, and also owns and operates Battles for Chattanooga Museum, Clumpies Ice Cream Co., GOOD DOG GO!, Grandview, RiverView Inn, Chanticleer Inn and Starbucks; as well as the ticketing and concessions for the Incline Railway and The Charles H. Coolidge National Medal of Honor Heritage Center, and the retail shop and café at Creative Discovery Museum. Visit for more info.