As part of the graduation celebration of the 53rd class of The Culinary School at the Food Bank of Delaware, Barclays presented a check for $175,000 to help support the Food Bank’s culinary workforce development program. Funding will support student scholarships to The Culinary School, the ManageFirst specialized food training program and a new culinary collaboration with West End Neighborhood House’s Launcher Program.
“Barclays is proud to partner with the Food Bank of Delaware by supporting their culinary arts job training programs,” said Clint Walker, Managing Director at Barclays. “These programs teach the skills needed for a career in culinary arts that can lead to economic stability for graduates and their families. This aligns with our commitment to support programs that have a meaningful impact, including training, skills development and job opportunities, in the communities where we live and work.”
This morning’s graduates include: Tiffany Greenfield, Keith Loveland, Tiffany Mason, Barry Mays, Dalicia Perkins and Jaclyn Stanley. All of the graduates passed the ServSafe® certification.
Students have spent the past 14 weeks developing their skills both in and outside the kitchen. From proper knife handling techniques to ServSafe® certification and completing a two-week internship, the students are prepared for entry-level jobs in the food industry. Guest speakers and field trips have rounded out the formal training program.
First Lady Tracey Carney provided keynote remarks.
“It’s important that we come together in efforts to end hunger; it’s important that we come together in this kind of celebration of achievement and opportunity,” say Carney. “In coming together, we strengthen our bond to one another – as neighbors and as human beings. In coming together, we recognize that the stories of today’s graduates, that the stories of those who serve at and who are served by the Food Bank, that all of our stories, are chapters in the same book.”
As part of the graduation ceremony, the Food Bank of Delaware and West End Neighborhood House announced a new collaboration sponsored by Barclays.
In partnership with West End Neighborhood House’s Launcher Entrepreneurship Program, a program designed to provide business start-up or expansion resources and support to aspiring entrepreneurs living in Claymont, Wilmington’s West Side, Bellevue and Edgemoor, the Food Bank’s Culinary Entrepreneurship Mentorship Program will provide Launcher program culinary entrepreneurs with a customized mentorship curriculum to help meet their professional goals in the field.
Tiffany Greenfield was among today’s graduates. Coincidentally, she also graduated from the Launcher Program in December 2017. The Launcher Program helped Greenfield refine her business plan, improve her financial literacy skills and set realistic goals. “A goal is just a dream unless you have a plan,” she said.
“Partnering with West End Neighborhood House will allow us to create a perfect program synergy allowing us to collaborate instead of compete,” said Food Bank of Delaware President and CEO Patricia Beebe. “When nonprofits partner to complement services, we can eliminate duplication of services. As nonprofit leaders, we know that funding sources are constantly shrinking. Today’s nonprofits need to leverage expertise and resources through collaborative partnerships. We are proud to collaborate with West End on this new initiative.”
Students’ tuition was funded through multiple sources including corporate scholarships from Barclays, Capital One, Chase and Comenity Bank, the Delaware Department of Labor, and Delaware WONDER (Work Opportunity Networks to Develop Employment Readiness), a federal grant geared to getting people into the workplace and off SNAP benefits. This employment and training program is led by Delaware Health and Social Services Division of Social Services (DHSS), which administers the SNAP Program in Delaware.
Students have landed employment at 8th & Union, Greenery Catering and Celebrations.
After the ceremony, graduates served guests a lunch buffet that included chicken kabobs with coconut rice, turkey/ ham wrap with mango chutney, salmon with potato hash, grilled asparagus, garden salads, roasted red potatoes, brookies (brownie and cookie mixed together), cheesecake cupcakes and million dollar chocolate cookies
The mission of The Culinary School is two-fold. First students are taught skills that are highly desirable to employers in the food industry and second, these newly-developed skills have the potential to lead to jobs in the industry that provide job security and economic sustainability. To learn more about The Culinary School at the Food Bank of Delaware, visit www.fbd.org/the-culinary-school.