Last Friday we graduated our second group of culinary students and couldn’t be more proud of their accomplishments — all 12 of our students have landed culinary jobs throughout Central Florida, with well above-minimum wage pay.
Chef David Ramirez gave an inspiring commencement speech, with the sage advice of wrapping a career around passion, continued education, and creativity. We couldn’t agree more. I asked the students to always remember exactly how they were feeling just before we handed out the diplomas, never forgetting the excitement, butterflies, hope, and passion they felt at that moment, which would drive them to fulfill any dream, and would encourage them to keep going even when times were tough. That’s what our culinary program at Second Harvest is all about.
In addition to culinary skills, we also change lives by empowering students to realize that they are in control of their destiny by the choices they make, and that no dream is unattainable when you have passion, leave room for education, and mix in a little creativity.
The group we welcomed 12 weeks ago came to us with a mindset of “I can’t, I won’t, I’ll never,” and left saying, “ I will, I can, I am.” And they are.
Some photos from graduation: