Stoke-on-Trent College is developing the future of the hospitality sector
Stoke-on-Trent College is making it its mission to revitalise young talent in the catering and hospitality sector. Learners hosted two ‘Big Buffet’ events, under professional supervision, in which they prepared a variety of dishes to give them a taste of what it would be like to work within the industry.
The last event took place on 28th September, where students from Ormiston Sir Stanley Matthews Academy and Clayton Hall Academy were invited to prepare a delicious buffet. On the menu were teriyaki chicken skewers, plaice goujons, spring onion pithiviers and a variety of delicious cakes.
The event aims to recruit learners onto the Junior Chef Academy programme, a partnership with foodservice giant, Compass Group UK & Ireland, that provides students with an intense 10-week cooking masterclass, ending with students preparing a two-course meal for their parents upon graduating.
The Junior Chef Academy will give students all the necessary training to master their craft in the kitchen. Stoke-on-Trent College has fantastic cooking facilities and catering experts to provide unrivalled tuition that will help develop the industry’s future.
The college has the Atrium Restaurant, soon to be reopened to the public, to provide students with a real-life experience they can carry into the workplace. In addition to this, the programme includes various masterclasses to inspire learners, and visits from industry experts who can pass on their knowledge and share their experience working within the catering sector.
Students receive a free uniform and workbook as part of the process and take part in two-hour sessions, giving them plenty of practice to hone their skills.
The children absolutely loved the evening and are still talking about it in class – you truly have inspired them!
It was such a fantastic opportunity for them, and I do believe it has really ‘opened the doors’ to further education within the industry for this group – so thank you!Representative from Ormiston Sir Stanley Matthews Academy
This state-of-the-art training is essential under the current climate, as the hospitality industry faces a significant skills shortage. As the hospitality sector experiences rapid regrowth following the COVID-19 pandemic, the College is dedicated to preparing our young people by providing them with the skills they need to succeed in an industry that offers them viable and enriching career pathways.
We’re really pleased to be collaborating with Stoke College on the Junior Chef Academy, their passion for food, people and teaching matches ours which makes for a perfect partnership.
It’s all about inspiring young talent and letting their culinary enthusiasm create great dishes in the kitchen. Our Junior Chef Academy is a proven success, with previous learners from the programme graduating on to commis chef apprenticeships at Compass. We know that our Stoke College cohort are already enthused, and we can’t wait to see their journey unfold.Compass Group UK & Ireland’s Head of Apprenticeships & Early Careers, Jonathan Foot
The College also aims to support local schools, and this programme is a prime example of the passion we aim to extract from our students. This experience will join together students passionate about cooking into a tight-knit and supportive catering community.
As well as the impact of COVID-19, the effects of BREXIT have created tremendous uncertainty across the industry. More than ever, it is crucial that we provide essential support for sectors damaged by these events as we hope for a more prosperous future.