Sixteen graduates end 2021 with new careers
December 2, 2021
The accomplishments of 16 students from the Food Bank of Delaware’s Culinary and L.O.G.I.C. (Logistics, Operations, General Warehousing and Inventory Control) training programs were celebrated this morning at a graduation ceremony.
The graduates have officially completed their coursework and are now ready for entry-level employment.
The new graduates are:
- Michael Gibson
- Danyelle Gregory
- Zachery Jackson
- Serwah Lydia
- Roosevelt Mack
- Cheryl Prince
- Todd Roach
- Miracle Robertson
- Gladys Sarfo
- Olivia Webster
- Payten Williams
- Jephtah Avendano
- Aja Hunnings
- Nyaire Lolly
- Joshua Meyers
- Jason Rhoades.
“We are so incredibly proud of you all,” said Food Bank of Delaware President and CEO Cathy Kanefsky. “What an accomplishment and what a great way to end 2021 – with a new career!”
Delaware State Treasurer Colleen Davis provided keynote remarks for the graduation.
“A top priority of our office is creating pathways to economic empowerment,” said Davis. “The path to economic empowerment is lined with education and opportunity. The Delaware Food Works Program provides both. I congratulate you not only for learning how to cook or work in a warehouse, but for taking the brave step to improve your situation for yourselves and your families.”
Under the instruction of Food Bank of Delaware Executive Chef Tim Hunter and Chef Instructor Ron Roll and the guidance of Diana McDaniel, Workforce Program Coordinator, the culinary students spent the past 14 weeks developing their skills and passion for the culinary arts. From proper knife handling techniques to ServSafe ® certification and completing a two-week work experience, the students are prepared for entry-level jobs in the food industry. This class also had an opportunity to reopen the Food Bank of Delaware’s Discover Café under the guidance of Executive Chef Joe Woomer.
The L.O.G.I.C. students, under the instruction of Operations Instructor Joe Cunha, spent the past 11 weeks learning to how safely maneuver and operate warehouse equipment and had a chance to earn their OSHA-10 and forklift certifications. The students’ training was well-rounded with the addition of life skills like communication, resume writing, interviewing, nutrition and more.
The mission of the Food Bank of Delaware workforce development programming is two-fold. First students are taught skills that are highly desirable to employers in the food service and logistics/warehousing industries and second, these newly-developed skills have the potential to lead to jobs that provide job security and economic sustainability
Upon receiving their certificates of completion, each new graduate had an opportunity to address the audience and thank their supporters.
“We came in as individuals, but we became a family,” said Michael Gibson. “We have a tight bond. We watch out for each other’s backs. I thank you for helping me with my studies.”
L.O.G.I.C. graduated Jephthah Avendando added, “I am very grateful for this program. I came originally from a bad place in my life when I first started the program. Thank you for the lessons on how to apply myself in the new electronic working world, and how to do that professionally and make myself available to potential employers.”
To learn more about free training programs at the Food Bank of Delaware, click here.