Bits & Bites: Culinary apprenticeships open

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BRATTLEBORO, VT. >> Strolling of the Heifers will offer up to 16 people a chance to enroll in a paid apprenticeship program designed to help them start culinary industry careers.

The Stroll's Farm-to-Table Culinary Apprenticeship program is a 12-week program offering training that can lead to permanent food-preparation positions at restaurant and institutional kitchens.

The program is free to participants who meet income employment status qualifications, including veterans. It includes classroom time, as well as on-the-job experience at restaurant and institutional kitchens, for which participants will be paid.

The aim of the program, says Orly Munzing, founder and executive director of Strolling of the Heifers, is to place all participants into permanent culinary employment at the conclusion of the program.

The program includes instruction and practice in:

• Food processing skills: basic food preparation, knife safety and techniques, kitchen safety, commercial dishwashing, culinary math skills, customer etiquette, nutrition, plating and presentation, expediting, minimizing food wastage

• Introductory management skills including inventory and cost control

• Commercial food basics: sanitation, cooking science, nutrition information, sourcing

• ServSafe food handler training (successful completion provides ServSafe food handler certificate)

• Local food systems and the value of maximizing use of local food

• Job readiness skills: timeliness, cleanliness, grooming and appropriate dress, personal finance, time management, being supervised, resume building

• On-the-job training: Participants spend more than half their time gaining experience in local commercial kitchens. They will be PAID for that time through the Vermont Department of Labor's workforce development programs.

The program will take place from July 5 until Sept. 16. The deadline to apply is Tuesday, June 14. Further information and an application may be found online at www.strollingoftheheifers.com/apprenticeship or in person at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden, 157 Main St., Brattleboro, Vt.


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