Food services continues to be one of the fastest growing and most competitive industries in the United States and worldwide. Trained food services employees are needed in the hospitality, business, and healthcare sectors of the economy and include jobs in businesses as varied as hotels, restaurants, bakeries, corporations, hospitals, airlines, assisted living facilities, and cruise ships.
Students at Shawsheen Valley RVTSD are introduced to the Culinary Arts shop through the Freshman Exploratory program. Training in safety and sanitation take place in the academic classroom and in shop. The main objectives are to develop basic hand tool techniques with a particular emphasis on knife skills and to expose students to production in each of the various workstations of the program’s public restaurant and bakeshop.
The Sophomore year of the culinary arts program provides an introduction to all aspects of a commercial foodservices operation. Sophomore students complete approximately 540 hours of shop, alternating terms in the kitchen and bakery. During the week of their academic studies, each student is given the opportunity to earn the OSHA 10-hour card through the CareerSafe© online course. Additionally, all students are eligible to earn a ServeSafe© food handler’s credential. This is a national certification that is valid for 5 years and is considered a distinct advantage toward gaining employment.
The Junior year is one in which students discover an ability to work with increased independence at a variety of tasks and to explore in greater depth the concept of management. Their pairing in shop with freshmen students provides them with an important leadership opportunity.
Senior students that meet the criteria are strongly encouraged to enter into the Cooperative Educational Program (Co-op). Working for local employers at restaurants, hotels, and healthcare facilities, students are able to hone their extensive hands-on skills and earn a paycheck.
National Industry Certifications/Accreditations
• American Culinary Federation (ACF) Program Certification
• ServeSafe© food handler’s sanitation certificate
• Career Safe (SkillUSA) Safety Card
• Johnson and Wales University
• Central Maine Community College
• Middlesex Community College
Work-Based Learning/Cooperative Education Opportunities
Numerous Co-op employers - Job sites include numerous area restaurants, hospitals, hotels, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, bakeries, and gourmet grocery stores.