Riverside City College’s Culinary Arts has received a one-time $100,000 grant from the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Division of Workforce and Economic Development in order to create a Riverside City College Short-Order Cooks Apprenticeship Program.
Funded from Proposition 98 monies, the grant will provide funding to offset startup and implementation costs to create a long-term sustainable Division of Apprenticeship approved apprenticeship program. Funds will be utilized to develop the formation of an apprenticeship program resulting in new employers sponsoring apprentices, curriculum development, equipment purchases, apprentice recruitment, and incentives for participation.
The apprenticeship training model has been used for centuries to provide employers with a skilled workforce and has proven to be one of the most effective training methods available to small, medium and large employers. An apprenticeship combines classroom and/or lab instruction with a work-based learning or on-the-job training experience in which the apprentice is paid a salary or wage. Apprenticeship is essentially a system of learning while earning, and learning by doing.
The apprenticeship will meet the following objectives: (1) expand the network of employees into apprenticeship program; (2) create partnerships with local support agencies (economic development agencies, Job Corps, RCC Community Education, Youth Opportunity centers, high schools, etc.) to promote participation of, and contribute to, the overall success of the program; (3) collect data on student and program progress, success, and best practices; (4) create a sustainability plan to ensure continuation after funding; and (5) ensure an 80 percent completion rate.
“The purpose of the two-year (4,000-hour) apprenticeship is to further the education and training of men and women for careers in culinary arts, food preparation and related industries,” David Avalos, associate professor, Culinary Arts, said. “The apprenticeship program has been designed to future culinarians entering the workplace with comprehensive training in the practical and theoretical aspects of work required in a highly skilled profession.”
The apprenticeship program is based on the voluntary cooperation between local chapters of the American Culinary Federation, industry and government, the individual hotel or foodservice establishments, and local school and college systems. It is, therefore, a truly cooperative endeavor.
“The rich rewards of this cooperation are apprentices who learn skills on the job in full-time paid positions, which will serve them to develop into committed and dedicated culinarians,” Avalos added. “Upon completion the apprentice will be certified as a sous chef under the jurisdiction of the American Culinary Federation.”