From education to employment

Broadening the Horizons of Aspiring Chefs

Level 3 Professional Chefs benefit from work experience with top restaurants and hotels following a series of events within the Culinary Arts and Hospitality department at Cambridge Regional College.

Throughout the Spring term, Culinary Arts and Hospitality have hosted a variety of events for students including masterclasses and competition heats that have been delivered and supported by industry experts from the Nomad Hotel, Infusions and Passion 2 Inspire. 

With a brief of gaining professional work experience during the half term break, the students used the professional networks they have forged through these opportunities to secure placements, and this proactive approach has resulted in an impressive catalogue of work experience opportunities over the February half term. 

Molly Sobey (21) spent 3 days working in the professional kitchens at The NoMad Hotel, Convent Garden where she supported the team in the production kitchen. Molly became part of the patisserie team where she was given responsibility for ice cream and honeycomb. 

Molly said, “The kitchens were amazing. It was like being in the college production kitchen but on a much larger scale. There were five different outlets, which is like nothing I have seen before. The experience has broadened my understanding of the full scope of possibilities within the Culinary Arts sector.”

Molly has since secured a further work experience opportunity with Infusions and is making enquiries into spending time at the Gonville Hotel in Cambridge.  

Jose Galan (26) attended a one-day work experience opportunity at Gonville Hotel in Cambridge where he became part of the team delivering an evening service. Jose was responsible for working on the starter.

Jose said, “Everyone was friendly and the experience I have gained working in the production kitchens at CRC prepared me well for the professional environment. I was nervous and excited but the opportunity to see the workings of a professional kitchen has cemented by dream of becoming a chef.”

Jose has since been offered a part-time job as Commis Chef at Gonville Hotel, which he has accepted and will undertake alongside his studies at CRC.

An existing professional connection with Restaurant 22 resulted in Head Chef, Sam Carter introducing Daniel Ryder (18) to Midsummer House, a 2 Michelin star fine-dining establishment in Cambridge, for his work experience opportunity. 

Daniel completed a whole shift (8.30am – 2.30am) with Head Chefs Mark Abbott and Daniel Clifford, supporting the preparation and delivery of lunch and dinner services. The morning and lunch service were spent working on prep for the evening service, and for dinner service Daniel was assigned to the larder and pastry section, with responsibility for plating up and delivering to the pass. 

Daniel said, “The standard of cuisine was on another level. It was a big eye-opener of what it is like to work in a Michelin star restaurant. It was hard work, and the environment was intense, but I met some fantastic chefs, and I am happy to take these contacts and the knowledge and experience I have gained, away with me.”As a result of a professional connection forged with Lee Cooper, Executive Chef of Bedford Lodge during the recent Passion 2 Inspire heats, Giorgio Filigno (17) was offered 3 days’ work experience in the Bedford Lodge production kitchens, supporting the team. During his time at Bedford Lodge, Giorgio was responsible for garnishing and was taught how to make sauces. Towards the end of his work experience, Giorgio was supported in making a Guinea Fowl pie. 

Giorgio said, ‘I was given lots of strategies for working more efficiently in a professional kitchen. It was a beneficial experience that has improved my knowledge of ingredients and menus. 

Cambridge Regional College is committed to providing the best experience for students through the delivery of high-quality learning and extra-curricular opportunities such as masterclasses and competitions. The exposure to professionals working in the industry broadens the horizons of our learners, motivating them to strive for the best in their education and career.

Chef Lecturer, Anthony Dunball

Find our more about Culinary Arts and Hospitality at Cambridge Regional College. Find out more about the establishments providing work experience opportunities to CRC students, NoMad HotelGonville HotelMidsummer House and Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spa.

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