The Repast Project


Focus your passion for food into work that works for you.

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Food has always been your passion.

Cooking is your calling or maybe you want to save the planet by changing the way we eat.

Maybe you've dreamed of opening a bakery since you were small or you want to teach others to cook healthy meals. Or maybe you want to share your culture by serving your grandmother's recipes. Perhaps you long to be the next M.F.K. Fisher. Alice Waters and Michael Pollan are your idols.

You've got cookbooks on your nightstand. 

I have a feeling we'll get along really well...

Maybe you've always known that you wanted to work in food, so you jumped right in and followed your passion.

Maybe you've always known that you wanted to work in food, so you jumped right in and followed your passion.

Or maybe you opted for the stable "responsible" path and went in a different direction. But now, you sit in your cubicle, stealthily browsing recipes on Pinterest, wondering if you could actually start that food truck you've been dreaming of....You can!

But, in a noisy, competitive industry with tons of people trying to do what you do, it can be tough to get going, and even harder to stand out. And despite all your passion, you've been spinning your wheels.

So how do you make it work?

You need more than passion. You need a plan


You, my fine, food-loving friend, are in very good company.

 A lot of people feel called to work in food, just like you. 

But just because food is your passion, that doesn’t mean just any old food job will suit you.

In fact, trying to navigate your way through so many options in the food world feels a little bit intimidating, and it’s kind of been getting you down.

And now that you’ve got that expensive food studies degree, or you’re working for that sustainable seafood non-profit, or you’re peeling onions for ten hours every day, you’re feeling a little lost. And you’re not quite sure where you’re headed. 

You’re starting to wonder if the problem is you.

Here's the thing:

Building a career in the food industry is a lot like cooking: 

If you're not clear on what you're trying to make, chances are you won't be satisfied with your results.

Contrary to popular belief, it isn't just enough to find your passion and go for it, especially in a field with as many different opportunities as food. You need to know all kinds of other stuff about who you are, what you're good at, what's important to you, what kind of life you want to lead, and how to put together all the puzzle pieces. 


I'll work with you in a process that is personalized around your needs. I'll ask questions to help you establish your goals, uncover your values, and recognize your strengths, and I'll support you and hold you accountable along the way. When our work is through, you'll have new found clarity, confidence, and a plan for moving forward. 

Not bad, huh?

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I've been exactly where you are.

I followed my life-long love for food and “succeeded”. I graduated from NYC’s top culinary school, cooked at Chez Panisse, wrote for Saveur and Food & Wine, and got two food-focused masters degrees. But for all my accomplishments, I wasn’t happy. 

I'll never forget spending my days off from Chez Panisse lying on my living room floor. 

After years of trying to find the right fit, I was frustrated and felt like a failure. It took me a long time and a ton of soul searching to chart the path that worked for me. 

I knew I wanted to help people achieve their potential, so I trained as a professional coach, and I founded The Repast Project to provide people like you with the kind of help I wish I had had when I was just starting out.

  Emily Halpern

Emily Halpern

Don't let following your passion leave you in the weeds.

 This is me in the weeds. Photo by  Sash Manev.

This is me in the weeds. Photo by Sash Manev.

I'm here to help you direct your passion into a fulfilling career.

I see potential everywhere (that means in you, silly!), brainstorm like a boss, and believe there's real power in following your heart and dreaming big

Through working with me, you'll uncover your values, discover your strengths, and establish clear goals for the food career you want. You'll overcome overwhelm and doubt, quiet self-destructive chatter, and get clear on where you're headed. You'll come away with the confidence and clarity you need to go after the food career of your dreams.



These steps take you from confused to cooking with gas:



Getting started

We dive deep to explore your dreams, goals, and challenges, and get a handle on what makes you tick, what's been holding you back, and where you may be getting stuck along the way.


Discover your WHY

Learn why you do what you do, what matters to you, what drives you, what is most rewarding, and what impact you want to make through your work.    


Understand your HOW

Discover your top strengths and determine the factors that affect your level of satisfaction at work. Understand what factors enable you to be at your best, and brainstorm rewarding ways to put your passion to work. 



Determine your WHAT

Using your new knowledge of your WHY and HOW, you'll research and brainstorm what sorts of entrepreneurial ventures will satisfy your needs and enable you to contribute the best of what you have to offer.  


Chart your path

With the foundations of your WHY, HOW, and WHAT all laid out, you'll be ready to set some concrete goals and get into action charting a path to where you want to go. 

Is this exactly what you need?

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How we'll work:

1. First, I'll send you a comprehensive prep-workbook full of questions to jumpstart our work together so you can start organizing your thoughts from the moment you sign up. Your answers will also help me to get to know you better and prepare us for your first session. 

2. We'll kick things off with a 75-minute discovery session (on the phone, Skype, or in Brooklyn, if possible)  during which time we'll discuss your biggest challenges, and we'll establish goals for working together.

3. Then, we'll get to work with two 60-minute sessions per month, and email check-ins on the off weeks.(on the phone, Skype, or in Brooklyn) to dig deeper, tackle challenges, and keep you moving forward. After each session, we'll establish "homework", steps you can take between sessions to keep you moving forward.

4. Throughout our work, you'll get recordings of each session to keep and reflect on, and you'll have access to me for unlimited email support between sessions. 



While I do not enforce a minimum commitment, I recommend that coaching engagements last for at least 3 months. I feel this yields the best, most consistent progress and satisfaction for my clients. After an initial three months, clients often continue to work with me on an ongoing basis.


Your investment:

$999.00 or $366.00 per month, with your first payment due upon enrollment, and subsequent payments due at the start of each month

Single, 60-minute sessions are available for $199.00




Who should get career coaching?

Career Hungry Coaching was created specifically for people like you who aren't satisfied with spending their careers doing ho-hum work. You already know that you want a meaningful, passionate food career, but you haven't quite figured out yet how to make it a reality. 

You've already gone so far as to identify your passion for food. Now it's time to put it to work. 

I created this program for people like you who want to do meaningful, food-focused work:

  • Food Studies students and graduates.
  • Culinary school students and graduates who don't plan on taking the traditional restaurant route.
  • Policy/Planning/Sustainability/Agriculture etc. graduates.
  • Passionate, food-obsessed folks considering a career change into food.
  • Current food-world professionals who are unhappy, confused, or frustrated in their careers.
  • Any of the above who are considering opening a food business, but haven't yet taken the leap.

Career coaching may be for you if: 

  • you want to finally get started on that business you've been dreaming of (it's not a pipe dream, in case you were worried).
  • you want to hop out of bed each day to do work that is aligned with who you are and what you care about.
  • you want to have clear career goals in more bouncing from random food job to random food job.
  • you want to feel calm, confident, and in control of your career path.
  • you want to have a way to talk about your resume and your experience without feeling all over the place. 
  • you want to feel like you’re finally on a path to get your career from what it is now to what you want it to be.
  • you want a supportive partner who has been where you are (that's me), whose number one goal is helping you figure this whole food career thing out.

Coaching may not be for you if:

  • you're not willing to put in the time it takes to do the assessments, exercises, and homework assignments that yield results. 
  • you've already got it all figured out, and you're just looking for tips on salary negotiation, networking, effective job-search techniques, and resume help.

My clients are creative professionals and aspiring entrepreneurs who want to do meaningful, food-focused work. 

I work with a wide array of clients in all areas of the food industry, from recent grads to career changers, entrepreneurs, restaurateurs, activists, farmers, and policy-makers.

Sound like you? 


Why Career Hungry Coaching?

Building a fulfilling career in food can take you down a bumpy road through uncharted territory. It's important that you're in the driver's seat. Making sense of your story, your values, and your goals helps you to take the reins, map out a plan, and make clear, intentional choices at every crossroads from here on in.


What results can I expect?

As a result of working with me, my clients have:

  • Been featured in Real Simple, The New York Times, 100 Layer Cake, and many more.
  • Launched new businesses.
  • Launched new blogs and podcasts.
  • Created new services and stopped offering others.
  • Signed more clients.
  • Grown their audiences.
  • Increased their prices.
  • Focused their job searches.
  • Started new jobs.
  • Re-nogiated their job descriptions.
  • Re-negotiated their salaries.
  • Been accepted to graduate school.

Through this work, you'll...

  • get the clarity that will help you set goals and go after them with a new sense of purpose.
  • perfectly position yourself to find (or create) a job that plays to your strenghts and taps your true potential.
  • know which jobs to apply for, which ones to pass up, and how to know if a position is a good fit.
  • learn how to present yourself to colleagues and employers so that you stand out from the crowd.

There's no such thing as a magic bullet, but I can promise you this:

You'll get crystal clear about what you want (and what you don't), what you have to offer, and how to shout it from the rooftops so you can find and attract the opportunities that are right for you.


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We're so thankful for Emily's services in helping folks navigate this growing landscape.

"Knowing you want to work in food can be both a blessing and a curse. While there is now ample opportunity that extends far beyond the kitchen, there is also no set path to follow.... We're so thankful for Emily's services in helping folks navigate this growing landscape."

-Taylor Cocalis, Founder,

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Now I have a brand new job, a plan for my side-hustle, and I no longer feel overwhelmed.

“When I started working with Emily, I was struggling with what to do next. I was unhappy with my job and my long commute, and I wasn’t sure if I could start a private practice. Working with Emily made me realize that, even though I haven’t thought of myself as an entrepreneur, I can still start my own thing, and I began fact-finding and planning for my side-hustle, which is something I had been putting off. Emily is able to break down what is holding a person back and guide them. She helped me reframe how I thought about things. Without being condescending, she was able to untangle what I was saying and feeling and get to the root of the issue that was holding me back. Now I have a brand new job, a plan for my side-hustle, and I no longer feel overwhelmed."

-Danielle Sobieski, Registered Dietitian.

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I feel so much clearer about so many things, and I actually start a new job next Monday!

"You are absolutely WONDERFUL at what you do. At first I was a bit nervous to talk to you, because I thought you were going to just look at my resume and criticize it, but this is much different than what I expected. It's so awesome! You just work with what's already're like an idea extractor! I feel so much clearer about so many things, and I actually start a new job next Monday! Thank you so much!"

-Sabrina Jennings, Blogger and Baker

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I feel that I have achieved so much in such a very little time. I couldn't be happier that I made this investment! 

"When I started working with Emily, I was struggling to get moving, and my lack of forward motion was causing me a great deal of stress and anxiety. Coaching can be a tricky balance of reflection and action, but Emily has found that balance and is truly excellent at it. She asks the type of questions that allow you to figure out what you need on your own, and she is able to keep tabs on the things that are important to you. I feel that I have achieved so much in a very little time! I'm more creative in my everyday life, I am much happier in my work now, and, as cheesy as it may sound, I feel much truer to myself. I couldn’t be happier that I made this investment!

-Jennie Campbell

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I consider her ongoing feedback and help invaluable.

“Emily listened and empathized, never failing to remind me that many of my supposed shortcomings could be reframed as strengths, and that many of my strengths lay not just in my professional accolades but in my unique personality traits–traits that differentiate me from others in my field.

Emily provided me with thoughtful assignments that allowed me to come to a variety of realizations that I could not have reached without the journey she outlined for me, and that helped to build my confidence further. Emily continues to support my growth and confidence as an expert in my niche, and I consider her ongoing help and feedback invaluable. 

I highly recommend working with Emily, especially if you are a self-identified polymath who is looking to blaze a new trail and not follow a well-worn path; and if you want to work with someone who will not give you shortcuts, but instead provide you with opportunities to do your own meaningful homework in a way that will make your hard-won insights stick, long after your formal work together ends.”

-Ryan Rose Cherecwich, Educational Constultant and Curriculum Developer

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I left our sessions knowing what action I needed to take in order to move toward my goals.

“Emily has a way of listening... not just hearing but really listening... and then distilling the information down in the most helpful and articulate way to really get to the heart of the matter. I would ramble on about something, and Emily was able to pull out the really important pieces so I could work through them and not get dragged down by all the other stuff. She asked me questions that got to the heart of the matter, rather than focusing on the surface nonsense that I thought was the problem, and I left our sessions knowing what action I needed to take in order to move toward my goals.  After working with her, I am way less worried, stressed out, and overwhelmed.”

-Christa Baird