SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby is next weekend, a tradition that wouldn’t be complete without food and drink.

About 50 local culinary students are headed to Churchill Downs to help pull it off.

The classroom kitchen here at the Schenectady County Community College (SCCC) is bustling but things are about to heat up big time when these students bring their skills to the Kentucky Derby.

The chefs-in-the-making know their way around the kitchen but they’re about to be tossed into the fast-paced world of the Kentucky Derby.

“I had a blast last year, feeding that many people. It was a rush,” Joe Williams, culinary student, said.

For the 35th year, SCCC students will be interning with a company that feeds the spectators of the biggest horse race in the world it’s a tall order.

“Oh there’s certainly a bit of stress,” Paul Krebs, culinary professor, said.

The sheer volume of food will come at shock to first-time students but not to Krebs who’s gone 25 times.

On Derby day alone, the students will help dish out 1,592 pounds of beef tenderloin and 1,592 pounds of baby carrots to 22,000 dining guests. The students will feed hundreds of thousands of people in the week of racing that leads up to the derby working long hours.

“Upwards of 16-18 hours a day,” Williams

The hard work will pay off when it comes to their resumes.

“People say oh, you worked at the Kentucky Derby, it catches their eye,” Krebs said.

Quamel Greshman will be going for the first time and hopes to prove himself as a budding chef.

The students leave for Kentucky on Sunday. They’ll spend a week putting their skills to the test and return home a day after the derby a wealth of knowledge.