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USG Turns Up the Heat Hosting “Kookoff with Mr. Kim” Culinary Competition 

Chef Yung Dae Kim and Carlos Lopez, Resident Assistant receive their awards after the competition.

On April 26, the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) collaborated with the Faculty Student Association (FSA) and CulinArt to host a live cooking competition on Staller Steps. Resident Assistant Carlos Lopez competed against Jasmine’s Chef Yung Dae Kim to see who could make the best Japchae vegetarian stir-fry. With the beautiful spring weather, nearly 100 students arrived to watch the competition.

Chef Yung Dae Kim and Carlos Lopez, Resident Assistant receive their awards after the competition.
Chef Yung Dae Kim and Resident Assistant Carlos Lopez receive their awards after the competition.

Yung Dae Kim has been in the food industry for more than 40 years and specializes in cooking many Asian cuisines. He is the current owner of East End Food Corporation and operates Cafetasia at Jasmine in the Wang Center. 

“I came up with the idea for the event after going to Jasmine one day watching Mr. Kim interact with everyone, always remembering their order and providing service with a smile. I wanted to honor him for his hard work and show him how much we appreciate him,” stated Kiara Arias, Director of Diversity and Inclusion Affairs, Undergraduate Student Government.

Five judges sampled both dishes and after the scores were tallied, USG announced that Mr. Kim was the winner of the competition! At the end of the event, USG gave Chef Yung Dae Kim a trophy to show their appreciation on behalf of all undergraduate students for his dedication and excellent customer service. Students who preregistered to attend were able to sample the food after the competition. 

“Student cooking competitions have become popular, and what I love most about these collaborations is that it enables our chefs and culinary team to connect directly with students in a fun and interactive way,” FSA Executive Director Van Sullivan remarked.

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