C of O Rated Best Culinary School

Press Release

College of the Ozarks was named Best Culinary School in Missouri Life magazine’s Best of Missouri contest in the Nov-Dec 2020 issue.

The Keeter Center, located on the campus of College of the Ozarks, is a multi-functional dining, lodging and event center just three miles from entertainment and shopping in Branson, Missouri.

The Dobyns Dining Room at The Keeter Center is an award-winning restaurant that provides a unique Branson dining experience. The Keeter Center is unique from other Branson restaurants, and as the largest workstation on campus, it is an integral part of the College of the Ozarks Work Education Program with more than 350 student workers.

Due to COVID-19 guidelines and to ensure the safety of students and guests, The Keeter Center now offers their menu selections and campus-produced specialty groceries for curbside pickup and outdoor dining. Food lovers choose from lunch and dinner menu selections that highlight the traditional farm-to-fork cuisine for which the restaurant is known. Curbside Pickup is simple and convenient with an online ordering process.

Robert Stricklin, executive chef at The Keeter Center at College of the Ozarks, established both the American Culinary Federation (ACF) and apprenticeship programs at College of the Ozarks. Stricklin has been interviewed by dozens of high-profile media venues and was featured in Plate magazine, Feast magazine out of Kansas City and St. Louis, and is regularly featured in 417 Magazine out of Springfield. College of the Ozarks also hosted Andrew Zimmern — TV personality, chef, writer, and teacher — at The Keeter Center’s Dobyns Dining Room restaurant in 2017 and was featured on his show, “The Zimmern List.”

People are eager to learn about the farm-to-fork concept that is subscribed to by the College, and Stricklin is passionate about educating students in all aspects of food production and preparation through the culinary arts program.

“Now what I consider success is not the awards that you receive but the information and the knowledge you pass on to the younger generation. Nothing pleases me more than teaching someone how to do something and then eventually seeing that person master it better than you,” Stricklin said.

Missouri Life is a six-time International Regional Magazine Association (IRMA) “Magazine of the Year” award winner. The magazine’s philosophy has always been centered on quality content at its core and is the only subscription-based statewide magazine in Missouri. Re-established in 1999 by Greg and Danita Wood, Missouri Life continues to set national circulation records for magazine retention time.

To see College of the Ozarks listed as Best Culinary School visit: https://missourilife.com/best-of-awards/#/gallery?group=349817

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