There are over 100 certifiable trades in BC and many people are surprised when they learn Professional Cook is one of them! Not only is Professional Cook a skilled trade but it’s also a Red Seal trade, meaning that their certificate enables them to work right across the country.
Fairmont Hotels in the Pacific Northwest region are great places of opportunity for aspiring Professional Chefs. Every year, seven regional Fairmont hotels participate in a friendly competition for the best apprentice prepared dish at the Annual Culinary Apprenticeship dinner. This year marked the 12th dinner and was hosted by the Fairmont Pacific Rim.
Executive Chefs at the Fairmont are enthusiastic about the apprenticeship system and understand the value of a providing a space where apprentices continuously learn and have the opportunity to create with those learnings. The three year Culinary Apprenticeship Program was established by Robert LeCrom, now a retired Executive Chef from the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, when he realized that there was a growing shortage of Red Seal Cooks. The program has seen hundreds of cooks through to certification since its launch 12 years ago.
Every year, each hotel hires and training two to three apprentices and many of them carry on with the Fairmont Hotels to complete their apprenticeship. The apprentices get a wide range of experience, as training is done on a rotation through all the different areas of the kitchen: saucier, entremetier, garde-manger, patisserie, and so on.
Each region’s Executive Chef take a vested interest in the advancement of the apprentices and provide unique training experiences in every kitchen. When we asked Executive Chef Nathan Brown, Fairmont Pacific Rim, what drives the Fairmont Chefs’ passion for apprenticeship training, he said “I’ve always had the philosophy that I should train and mentor people to be a better chef than me, because we can constantly improve together and move the needle further in the industry. Training can be intense, fun, creative and educational all at the same time, and that’s what I hope will leave a lasting impression on the apprentices. Culinary is a trade that is perfected over years of experience, gaining skills and knowledge first-hand, and it’s important to share that hands-on opportunity with our rising chefs of the future. You are a product of your environment, and if you are taught in a way that positively develops your career, you will do the same one day for the next generation.”
Find out how you can become an employer sponsor and pass on your knowledge and passion for your trade.
For more information on the Fairmont Apprenticeship Program, check out http://www.fairmont.com/pacific-rim-vancouver/press-room/apprentice-dinner-2016-neighbourhood-noshing/
Do you know an apprentice or employer champion?
The Champions of Apprenticeship are recognized for their outstanding achievements in BC apprenticeship system. These Champions are celebrated for their hard work in creating certified tradesworkers, supporting their industry and promoting apprenticeship. Do you know an outstanding employer sponsor or apprentice? Send us an email and nominate them to become a Champion of Apprenticeship!