December 7, 2013

A Night at the Chef’s Table

About six months ago we wrote about the Student Ambassador Program here at the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts. We explained that the program allows students to gain experience. As ambassadors, students help out with new student orientations, career fairs, and any special events held on campus. This gives them the opportunity to meet incoming students, community enthusiasts, and industry professionals who come to our campus. This program was developed to instill a sense of campus community, leadership and recognition among participants to mold them into some of our best and most successful students.

Along with being recognized for their volunteerism at graduation, Student Ambassadors are also recognized at several different points throughout the program. After 30 hours of service, participating students receive an Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts travel cup, t-shirt and recognition pin. Then, after 60 hours of service, participating students are invited to the “Chef’s Table,” an evening out with Chef Instructors at a local, respected, high-end restaurant.

Last week, six students were honored at the Chef’s Table at a local restaurant called Swift’s Attic. Accompanied by our Executive Chef, Robyn McArthur, Chef Instructor Gregory Dishman, and Chief Academic Officer Randall Samson, these students enjoyed an evening of wonderful, fresh and local food in one of the city’s best restaurants. The chefs accompanying the group of students were extremely pleased to see one of our graduates Nicholas “Red” Abrams, come out from the kitchens to say hello. Red was a Student Ambassador as well, but never received his pin. So during dinner, our Executive Chef was able to present him with his ambassador pin as he exchanged stories with the students at the table.

When I asked Chef Randall Samson, our Chief Academic Officer, what he thought about the program six months ago, he said some things about Student Ambassadors that hold true today and were proven at last week’s Chef’s Table:

“Ambassadors tend to be our best students. I’m not sure if it’s that our best students are those who want to volunteer or if our students who volunteer become our best students through the gained experience. Either way, there’s definitely a correlation.”

Congratulations to our new ambassadors: Paige Pospisil, Erick Luther, Brian Peller, Julie Ratzesberger, MaryLou Holmes and Randy Gibson.