Twelve local students completed their QQI Level 5 programme in Professional Cookery at the School of Food in Thomastown last week.
Under the instruction of tutors Patrick Flanagan and Dympna Moynihan Maher, this group of students attended a nine-month full time course which includes practical cooking in the commercial training kitchen at the school, computer studies including word processing, and work placement in the hospitality industry.
“The students are prepared for the commercial world of work as chefs when they leave the school,” Patrick Flanagan said.
“The work experience which they have received is invaluable to them, and in many cases has led to paid work,” he added.
Dympna Moynihan Maher, assistant chef/tutor, works with the students to place them in restaurant and hotel kitchens which are most suitable to them, in terms of location and duties. “We work closely with the chefs where the students are placed, to ensure that both student and workplace benefit from the experience.”
With twelve students due to graduate later in the year, nine have obtained employment to date – with three in Thomastown, two in Carlow and the remainder in Kilkenny city.
The programme is fully funded through the Kilkenny Carlow Enterprise Training Board, and another course is planned to commence in September. Applications may be made by calling 056 7754397 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Towards the end of the programme, the chefs participated in the Thomastown Community Network gala dinner in May. They prepared and cooked the meal on the night, and it was a worthy showcase for the work they had done throughout the year.