Acclaimed celebrity chef Jernard Wells will not only make an appearance on Mississippi Valley State University’s campus next week but also participate in a cook-off.

Jernard Wells


Wells is the host of “New Soul Kitchen” on CLEO TV and is a co-host on “The Best Things I Ever Ate” on the Cooking Channel. He was a runner-up on the “Food Network Star”  reality series.

He’s also worked with celebrities such as Tyler Perry and has been featured by several magazines and talk shows.

MVSU’s health initiative, Valley in Motion, will host its Pre-Homecoming Chopped Competition from noon to 2 p.m. Sept. 23-25 at the Charles Lackey Recreational Center.

Selected participants in the competition will compete for the title of “Best Chef on the Yard” and earn the opportunity to face Wells during the final competition, to be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 25.

The public may attend at no charge.

In addition, Wells will be signing copies of his new cookbook, “Southern Modified,” from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 25 on the first floor of the William Sutton Administration Building.

In a variation on the cooking TV show “Chopped,” contestants will be pitted against each other to concoct the best dishes from pre-selected ingredients for judges to taste.

“This is the third Chopped Competition hosted by Valley in Motion, and I am very excited to have the ‘Chef of Love’ Food Network star and book author chef Jernard join us to participate in our Pre-Homecoming Chopped Competition,” said Shayvonne Ford, Valley in Motion project coordinator.

“Everyone is always excited to sample the food prepared by the participants and judge for themselves which dish they thought turned out the best. It was a great event last year, and we have worked hard to make this one even better,” she said.

MVSU faculty, staff, students and alumni as well as community members can sign up to participate from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday at the following campus locations:

• The weight room of the R.W. Harrison Complex.

• The Office of University Advancement, Suite 135, in the William Sutton Building.

• The Jacob Aron Student Union.

Funded by a grant from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation, Valley in Motion is a program designed to help increase healthy living outcomes on MVSU’s campus, in local schools and in surrounding communities.

For more information, contact Ford at 254-3912 or

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