Aimed at preparing the next generation for a career within the catering industry, students will have access to mentors and work placements within a professional working environment.
The scheme will include 10 to 15 students aged between 17 and 35 from Blackburn College’s Level 2 and 3 Food and Beverage/Patisserie and Confectionery/Professional Cookery courses and Hospitality Management Foundation Degree FdA.
“We want to raise more meaningful ways of entering the catering industry,” said Michelle Mellor, director of Blackburn-based CJUK. “It’s a challenging sector to work in and interim chefs have quite a negative reputation. We are really keen to change this.”
She joined Christopher Jones, a CJUK chef, and Jamie Boyes, CJUK account manager, when they spoke to the students at a dedicated launch event, sharing over 25 years of experience and industry knowledge.
“The mentoring scheme encourages further links between industry and education” said Jones. “We hope that it will help to raise the profile of interim chefs and prepare students for flexible and rewarding careers.”
Mellor added: “By 2025, nearly 70% of workers will be employed on a temporary or flexible basis. It is vital that students understand the nature of working within a professional kitchen and see the benefits of being able to choose when and where you work.
“Catering is such a vibrant and fast paced industry, it can offer students a fantastic career path.”
PICTURE (from left): Michelle Mellor and Katie Mellor (CJUK Director), CJUK chef Christopher Jones, CJUK Account Manager Jamie Boyes, Paul Sharples and Nicholas Hall (Blackburn College) with students Amber Gibson April Taylor (front).