Like many of our students at The Culinary School, Seaford resident Vern Davis made the decision to improve his life, starting with a career change. It’s not that Davis didn’t have a job; his full-time job was just not fulfilling.
“I always had a high passion for cooking,” says Davis. “My goal was to have a work environment that was pleasurable. If you work in a place you want to go, things go easier.”
Thanks to his girlfriend, he learned about one of the Food Bank’s Delaware Food Works workforce development programs, The Culinary School. This 14-week program provides adults an opportunity to learn basic and high-end kitchen skills in the classroom and in the kitchen. Students have the opportunity to become ServSafe ® certified, learn life skills, and participate in a 2-week paid internship. In FY 19, 70 students graduated from the program; graduates had a 74.5 percent employment rate.
Davis said he submitted his application online, and the rest – as they say – is history. As a man who already enjoyed cooking at home, he said that his experience at the Food Bank has provided opportunities to experiment with new things. “I tried the sauces at home,” he said, adding that the tomato sauce he made in class became the base for chili at home.
He also enjoys making seafood and variations of entrees featuring chicken breasts.
The class has also helped him re-evaluate his goals. “Eventually, I aspire to be a chef in a high-end kitchen and own a food truck,” Davis said.
“I love the class,” he said. “I tell my friends and share the photos I take.”
Davis’s experience at the Culinary School will culminate with an Aug. 13 graduation ceremony. Applications are now being accepted for the next class starting on Tuesday, Sept. 3. Click here for more information.