About Us

Rochester Youth Culinary Experience: RYCE

RYCE is a restaurant run and operated by East High School students. It is located in Village Gate across from Salena’s Mexican Restaurant.

It is our goal to bring experienced-based entrepreneurship skills to youth in the city of Rochester, as an outlet for students to improve workforce readiness and entrepreneurial skills. RYCE brings experienced-based entrepreneurship skills to East High School students. Students are in the program for Junior and Senior year, and for their first year Post-Grad. The students rotate throughout all of the positions in the restaurant to learn all aspects of running a business, including the back office “management” positions of handling payroll, budgeting, scheduling, taxes, insurance, etc.

Our Original Concept

Our mission is to bring experienced-based entrepreneurial skills to youth in the city of Rochester, so they may positively impact their communities.

  • We can do this through running a fully functioning, self-sufficient restaurant run by high-school students and a management team.
    • Students were involved in all aspects of the development of the restaurant including: Design, menu, pricing, planning
    • Juniors are involved in the program through our partnership with East High school, learning the basics of the restaurant and familiarizing themselves with the process. Once they achieve their matrix goals, they become employees on site.
    • Seniors that have achieved their matrix goals are paid employees on site at the restaurant and also receive work opportunity credits. Throughout the course of the year they work in all positions in the establishment, including management and administrative roles.
    • Post graduates have the opportunity to remain employed for 1 year to mentor the incoming students.
  • To become involved, students complete a matrix signed off by their school. Once complete, they can become a paid employee at RYCE.
  • RYCE was created as an outlet for students to improve workforce readiness and entrepreneurial skills. We believe there is nothing more educational than hands on experience.  This program provides the confidence and understanding to incorporate the various needs and requirements of business ownership and overall employment.
  • New students are able to make their mark on RYCE each year, by offering new ideas. This constant influx of ideas allows for the business to remain relevant to needs of the students while improving the experience for the guest.

Board of Directors

Kelly Metras, Chair
Aaron Metras, Vice Chair/Treasurer
Owners, Salena’s Mexican Restaurant
Partners, Nox Cocktail

Rita Metras

Board Members:
Chef Jeff Christiano
Chef/Culinary Arts Teacher, East High School

Darcy Kalaghan
Special Education Teacher, East High School

Kim Cleere
Card and ATM Operations Manager
ESL Federal Credit Union

Larissa Lalka