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A taste of success: JOLLY University champions soar as they share treasured winning moments

Aiming to set a new standard as a premier campus culinary competition and learning program that introduces enriching career-building opportunities and real-work experiences for aspiring chefs and food entrepreneurs, JOLLY University (JU) is a youth empowerment advocacy pioneered by JOLLY Food Line, one of the leading brands in canned foods and vegetables in the country.
On its fourth consecutive year, JU is calling again on young and talented students from all over the metro and South manila to take on the exciting challenge and cook their way to a better future. Now open for non-culinary arts students, this year’s edition is more fun, expansive and inspiring as it highlights fresh talents and local flavors with the theme, “It’s More JOLLY in the Philippines.”
Rewarding experiences
Jolly University Year 3 Winner, 19 year-old Jan Ezra Mendoza of La Consolacion-College Manila, showcased his passion, skills, and grit in last year’s competition as he cooked his heart out for an opportunity of a lifetime. According to him, JU has motivated him to think outside the box and to go for his goals.
“The JU competition pushed my creative abilities. I gave extra effort to do my best, putting into good use all the experience and what I have learned throughout the competition. I learned that there is more to culinary than just cooking in a hot kitchen; there are many fields in which I can enhance my skills,” said Mendoza, who won JU’s first Individual Cook-Off  Category with his “Fish Hardinera with Mango Salsa” dish.   
Mendoza, along with other JU winners have received mentorship training under Chef Mitchie Sison and the JOLLY brand team.
“One of my most memorable moments in JU was when I took part in the Guinness World record attempt of cooking the largest serving of mushroom.  Never in my life have I imagined being part of such historic success. Also unforgettable for me is doing magazine and TV interviews, and of course the food video shoot, as not all college students are given this opportunity,” he shared.
Satisfying sessions
Rising above the pressures of the competition, at the cornerstone of the champions’ hard-earned success is their shared love for cooking and food, as well as the desire to forge meaningful, rewarding careers for themselves.
Another winner, Jemuel M. Palmares, together with FEU teammates Kim B. Mercado and Francis John D. Candido, won the Group Challenge-Main Dish Category for their entry, “Crispy Jolly Mushroom Laing.”   
“Winning in the JOLLY University competition helped boost my confidence in cooking. The experience served as my training ground and gave me an added credential. Winning at JU inspired me to be more eager in developing my culinary skills, to discover the boundless opportunities that await me in this career,” said Palmares.
As one of the JU student brand ambassadors, Palmares is focused on building his future in the culinary field entering internship in the US with learnings he got from the Jolly University.
For JU Year 4 aspirants, grand winner Ezra Mendoza offered his advice: “It’s important for students to join this kind of event wherein we can enhance, improve and showcase our talent. You can`t learn it all in school; you have to go beyond. Be part of this wonderful, life-changing learning journey.”
In the fourth year of Jolly University, the culinary contest will feature five categories in line with their theme of being more JOLLY in the Philippines:  Individual Category (featuring Luzon Cuisines made easy, healthy and baon ready); Team Main Dish Category (Visayas Cuisines Made Easy, Healthy and Jolly); Team Pasta Category (Mindanao Cuisines made Pastariffic) and Team Mocktail Category (Capture the Jolly Vibe of the Philippines in a Sip).
Open to all Metro Manila, South and Central Luzon college students from age 16 and up. This year’s grand winners will get to win as much as Php50,000 worth of cash and prizes, trophies, and a Culinary Mentorship Program.
To formally join this search, students are just clicks away by simply downloading all the application forms, and filling it up from the Jolly Eats Facebook Page ( or Jolly Food Line website: Deadline of submission is on January 15, 2017.
Fly Ace Corp. is one of the leading food and beverage consumer goods companies in the country today. Propelling limitless multiple-category growth by bringing the best of the world closer to Filipino consumers, Fly Ace Corporation’s portfolio of food and beverage products includes house brands and exclusively distributed brands. To learn more about Fly Ace, visit
JOLLY is a canned fruits and vegetable line marketed and exclusively distributed by Fly Ace Corp.
For more updates, visit or like its official Facebook fanpage or follow via Twitter and Instagram (@jollyeatsph).

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