Blackpool and The Fylde College has cooked up a route to a successful career in the catering industry with a course designed specifically for jobseekers.
The five-week Department for Work and Pensions – Job Centre Plus partnership project courses have seen students attend College for two days each week, and learn introductory skills including cooking a wide variety of dishes and health and safety in the workplace.
The students have all really enjoyed the classes and said they felt it gave them important skills for the job market
Five of the students on the latest course have now signed up for the College’s fast-track course which will lead to them achieving a Level 2 NVQ in hospitality and catering – and potentially moving on to a Level 3.
Tutor Carol Davies said: “The students have all really enjoyed the classes and said they felt it gave them important skills for the job market.
“From this course alone, five of the students have now signed up to do a full-time course at the college which shows what a valuable programme this has been.”
Hospitality, Tourism and Sport Programme Leader Steve Alexander said: “These courses have been really well received and we have had a 100 per cent success rate with those taking part.
“As well as increasing self-esteem and confidence, students have said how proud they have been to take home the food they have produced, which is great to hear.
“They have also taken part in an industry placement to learn what it is like to spend time in a professional kitchen environment.
“With this course the College is really fulfilling a requirement in our community for these kinds of industry-focussed courses which lead to employment.”
The course – which ended with the students all receiving their certificates – followed on from successful programmes throughout the summer.
As well as taking away essential new skills designed to meet industry-standards, the students also received a set of “whites”.