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Why Are Some Students So Rude?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

I just can understand why the young people in my school are so rude, unhappy, and just plain competitive with me?  Last semester, I received accolades for my creativity and flavors, but one female student tried replicating my dish and fell flat.  Another student made a corn and black bean salsa (yesterday) and seasoned it with just plain lemon juice, little to no salt, and no herbs like cilantro or a jalapeno, or olive oil to soften it.  She asked for my opinion and I told her it was a bit on the tart side and she said she likes it like that, so don't ask for my opinion.  I left it alone and told her it my only my tastes; not hers.  She was let down.  Not my fault.  My advantage is I've been cooking for over 40 years and just decided to change careers out of a law office and into a professional kitchen.

 

I could feel the tension.  If your equipment doesn't have your name on it, it's stolen.  These people cheat on tests, wear scarfs around their heads, carry measuring cups dangling outside of their knife case/roll and use them without washing or sanitizing them, stroll into class any time they deem fit.  One girl is late everyday and blames in on traffic.  Hey, you know traffic is an issue, get your fat-azz out of bed and leave early.  They speak while the instructor is speaking and if you ask the instructor a question, THEY try to answer for him or her.  I don't stand for it and I immediately ask them to allow the instructor to give me my answer.  Of course, another attitude.  I tried to pull the "late everyday student" aside to tell her she needed to brush all the hair she shed hair off of her uniform (which was wrinkled and slightly dirty from no laundering).  She ignored me and continued plating shrimp for a catering job.  I almost don't care!

 

Another student thinks she's in charge because she's been stationed on the grill for 7 weeks.  She is walking around "checking" on other students.  She was only supposed to be assigned on the grill for 1 weeks, but the instructor wants her there.  Unfair, because other students do not get rotated.  No, they get rotated as servers.  An injustice.

 

This school would be great, if the area was more evolved.  The chef/instructor is making this over-the-top French cousine that no one is familiar with such as a duck consomme with julienne swiss chard and a poached egg on top.  Who will eat this in the inner-city?  Perhaps a Frenchman passing by.  Or how about crabcakes (not very tasty) with a chipotle hollandaise?  It tasted like smoky mayo.  I think a classic hollandaise with the buttery/lemon flavor and some cilantro on it and a spicy chipotle mayo, and a romoulade with an chopped onion/gerkin topping.  The chef/instructor also places the coleslaw on the underside of the burger.  Said she wants the customer to "see the grill marks".  This is so stupid because the bread gets soggy.  I suggested the slaw be placed on top of the burger since the bun sits off to the side, but she said no.  Oh well.  Which explains why our bistro hardly has more than 20 people at a sitting.

 

I'll be glad when Spring semester starts and I'll be able to be creative again with a different instructor because this woman acts like it is her restaurant and not a school for us to learn.  It's a good thing I can cook and know my flavors well because I would be up shhhh't creek like the other students.  

 

I just keep my head in my books, be where I'm supposed to be, execute whatever she wants and it will all be over in about 5 weeks and no more her!

 

In case you can't tell, I really dislike my school.  Without making a pun, my school has no class.

post #2 of 27
I have two quotes from former professors of mine to share with you:

1. When you become either the teacher or boss then you can do anything you want, until then...

2. If you think the other students have attitudes, maybe it's time to look into a mirror with a very detached and open mind.

3. Your job is to do wherver it takes to get to #1 and perhaps the best way to start is with #2.
post #3 of 27

Make your observations with the students.  Remember, you will be working in the industry after school, and you will face the same behaviors and attitudes from your co-workers.  I'm not saying I like this situation or even agree with it, but that's the way it is.  If you have good rapport you can change behaviors and attitudes, but if you remain aloof, you won't.

 

That said. if you really want your jaw to hit the floor, try dealing with customers.........

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #4 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodpump View Post
 

If you really want your jaw to hit the floor, try dealing with customers.........

 

TBH i have lead with worst during my culinary courses and with my co-workers....

 

Today our head chef was 1 hour and 10 minutes late to service..... why you ask?

Her 18 year old boyfriend came back to town and lets just say they missed eachother ALOT....

 

While she was waking up, we were in 2 cooks doing prep for for service. When she came in we were done with prep eating our lunch , while she comes up with just a very poor excuse. Good thing i only have one lunch service left till my contract with this restaurant ends and i can leave freely XD. 

 

My suggestions to you would just attempt to do your best , you really cant change people to be the way you want , especially when you hold no authority. Its school , regardless if its an advanced course or college there will always be fools. Remember in a kitchen you must be assertive , its culinary school but real worl dkitchens are worse , so be assertive. Dont swear but demand your respect. 

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #5 of 27

A lesson I learned long ago, you can only change YOU, you cannot change others!

 

Life is not fair, live with it!

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 

Thanks, but I've done plenty of self-analyzing, and know for a fact, it is definitely not me.  Since when is it permissible to wear a do-rag on your head in the kitchen, or headphones, or wear a filthy uniform with stains leftover from a previous week?

 

I have been honored to be a teaching assistant for the past year for one of the chef/instructors, and she really respects me.  As a matter of fact, most of the instructors concur with me.  One instructor gave up her teaching the nutrition for professionals course for next semester because :  1.  The class talks over her while she tries to teach; 2.  Only a few of us are getting good grades; and 3.  Several students come in to class and go as they please.

 

The instructor I have now for production cooking is new this semester and has stepped on a few veteran instructor's toes.  I hear sales are down almost 60% from the last semesters since she started in the restaurant and it's almost always empty during lunch time.

 

She took over one of the veteran instructor's job and he's been reassigned to classroom work, she revamped another's menu in the restaurant and didn't tell him until after she did it.  He was in charge of international couisine Mondays-Wednesday, but she incorporated international couisine into her menu as well.  Sales are down on our days:  Thursdays and Fridays.

 

At 57, I do know a few things in life.  One is if you're new to an establishment and whatever's in place works, don't "fix" it.  Second, respect your colleagues.  Don't run rough-shod over their accomplishments in order to showcase your own.  You'll create an enemy.

 

I am older than most of the students in the school and already know how to cook and am in school to learn professional techniques, so I am not some wide-eyed kid, trying to figure out how to take a knife out of a case.  I know what I'm doing, but need that certificate as a start.  With the required experience in the field (working in professional kitchens), my plan is take it a step further and become certified.  I already have the additional 30 hours required by ACF for the Business Management Supervision Certificate (I earned that in 2000), and I will also take the extra 30 hours of Sanitation & Nutrition courses for that additional certification.

 

I have a plan and am not walking around critiquing everyone.  I am just taken aback by the hypocritical standards in my school.  Of course, I am venting to whomever will read this, but I am taking care of me and just have to remember that I am not in a prestigious culinary academy, that I can't change anyone, that I must take care of myself.  

 

That was and is still my goal.


Edited by Etherial - 11/4/13 at 6:28am
post #7 of 27

Why would it be unacceptable to wear a do-rag as your hairnet and or hat and or toque?

 

Originally Posted by Etherial View Post
 One is if you're new to an establishment and whatever's in place works, don't "fix" it. 

Whether whatever is in place works or not, don't fix it unless you were hired to fix it.

 

At my present place of employment, I don't agree with everything but I don't have to. I also don't have to put my name down at the bottom of business checks either. I have been there and done that before. I choose not to do that now.

 

Basically, I do my job, a huge part of which is to not fix things and other people.

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #8 of 27

I dunno... Was there a specific question you wanted answered?

 

 

 

People are ( deleted).  Get over it.

 

You want to complain about do-rags?

 

Here are some minor incidents that happened at work Friday.

 

1)Customer physically wedges herself in the line up and insists I serve her first.  When I reply I'm happy to serve her as soon as I serve the ones who were first, she gets flustered and demands that I tell her where she can find a similar place to spend her money. Age: 40-ish

 

2) Woman comes in and starts scarfing down samples I have on the service counter.  She then insists she wants to try another item.  I tell her I only feature one item to sample per day.  She insists I take one out of my showcase and cut it up for samples.  I repeat my boilerplate.  She tells me she lives in the neighborhood and will be shopping at my store every day, then storms out.  Age 30-ish

 

3) Customer with her kids lets them run all over the place.  Kids are kids and spill their hot chocolate, make a mess of the toy-box and smear my showcase with fingerprints.  I don't have a problem with that, kids are kids.  Mother does nothing, absolute nothing .  Age: Late 20's

 

And on and on and on.

 

Get over it.

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #9 of 27

There's rude people everywhere in every profession. And it seems to be at about the same rate.  Just something you have to deal with.

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #10 of 27
Thread Starter 

ATTENTION:  THESE ARE JUST MY OBSERVANCES.  I do not mention these findings to anyone.  I'm just venting here.  I am proud to be a culinary arts student, I just wish my classmates treated it with some dignity and not get an attitude when I do not lend my equipment to them.  That's all.  I do know that if your name isn't on it, it's gone, baby, gone.

 

If Tre-tre wants to wear a purple do-rag around her head, sing loudly in the prep kitchen with her headphones on and walk into class 30 minutes late most days, that's her problem.

 

If Joe Blow wants to talk over the instructor while she's talking, I DO SAY SOMETHING to him, however, it is done politely.  He quiets down for a minute or two.  I need to hear the lesson, too.

 

If Suzy Salad wants to come to school in a wrinkled and stained uniform that looks like she's competing in a Tide commercial, more power to her!

 

I don't criticize them, I'm just noticing and listening to what's going on.  I would never hurt these kids' feelings.  It saddens me that they're not taking this seriously. My class started out with 180 students and now, on a good day, there are only 24 of us left and even a few from the 24 will not make it to 4th semester.  On some days, there's only 9 of us in a class.

 

Just as a reminder to everyone, I'm 57 years old and starting over doing what I really love...cooking.  

post #11 of 27

I remember when i classmate of mine dropped a hot lemon veloute on my hand. Note he dropped it because he never saw oil boiling and it scared him.

He would come into class wearing shorts and a short sleeve shirt , all dirty and on top of that wouldnt even pay attention. 

 

When we got to the changing room we had a nice chat , and i just smiled told him it was okay "cough cough " and pretended i didnt want his head on a spit. 

 

Well ill tell you right now he isnt working in the culinary industry <_< people who dont take this industry seriously will usually just implode. 

 

Now if whatever Susy Salad , or Billy the Butcher is doing in the kitchen effects me in a bad way or effects my workplace in a bad way , then they better straighten up cuz i have an ugly side and those who have seen it , usually dont have to see it twice. 

 

But 95% of the time i am a nice person who laughs alot in the kitchen. 

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #12 of 27

My chef when she went to culinary school her class had 60 students , by the time they went into butchering their was around 30. 

When they graduated there was less then 20. 

Now only 4 out of those 60 are still working in the industry. 

 

In school one rotten apple can spoil the bunch , but in this industry the bad apples usually spoil alone with the other bad apples. They dont last long , or realize its not as easy as it looks or seems. Then they regret not paying attention in class and they wish they had watched that lesson when the teacher was teaching how to make freaking stock. 

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #13 of 27
It just sounds to me that you need to just lower your head and take in what the teachers are trying to teach, they do know more about food then you do, even if you don't agree with it or you don't need it right now that's what you are paying money for. its the same as in a real resturant you are not always going to agree with the but that's the way they want it. I was told by the first chef I worked for "there are 2 ways of doing things my way and the way that will get you fired"
As far as the way they handle problems or situations In their class its not your concern same as the real kitchens if you dont agree with the way the chef is handling somthing. Its none of your business.
With the other students mind your own business, its not your place to point out what you Think they are doing wrong that's why they are giving you attitude, just worry about what you are doing and the way handle yourself.
What you are experiencing is exactly what a professional kit hen is like if you are having that much trouble now then you might want to think about a other career path
post #14 of 27

[deleted]

 

Nevermind... not worth getting further involved.

post #15 of 27
Thread Starter 

DEBO:  Where did you read I complained to anyone?  These are things in my head only.  

 

I would NEVER hurt these kids' feelings.  I'm not that kind of person.  If you are going to render an opinion, then you should definitely READ correctly.

 

You've already assumed they have an attitude with me because you assumed I complained to them about themselves or their lifestyles; not true!  These extra supplies I purchased are to make my duties easier; not theirs.  I've lent out before and got burned.  No, I'm not lending them my equipment that I took hours to purchase at specialty stores.  They are my ravioli cutters, they are my offset spatulas, or citrus presses, or Wusthof knives or knife sharpener.  No, means no.  I've lent an expensive knife ONCE to a student and when I asked her where it was, she told me "in the sink".  Are you kidding me?  I've lost a meat thermometer, a boning knife, so NO, I will not lend my equipment out and if that garners an attitude, then they should get over that, hon; not me.

 

I'm going to stop responding to this post because I don't want to fight with anyone, but your insult got me started and I'm going to give it to you straight:  It's scary that you misread my comment and you're a professional chef?  I sure hope you don't mix up someone's food whose allergic to something because you didn't read his order correctly.

post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Debo View Post

With the other students mind your own business, its not your place to point out what you Think they are doing wrong that's why they are giving you attitudeh

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Etherial View Post
 

You've already assumed they have an attitude with me because you assumed I complained to them about themselves or their lifestyles; not true! 

 

The following was posted by you earlier and to be honest with you, while you might not view it as complaining to your fellow students about themselves or their lifestyles, I can see how your advice might have been met with attitude.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Etherial View Post

 

I tried to pull the "late everyday student" aside to tell her she needed to brush all the hair she shed hair off of her uniform

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #17 of 27

well, you know.

I don't think they actually are rude ..... its more that they have difficulties to handle the fact that you are there, being older and all.

It creates a kind of unspoken barrier.

Maybe consider that they might also feel unsecure about themselves still, being so young and unexperienced compared to someone who has been cooking for much longer than them.

When you can make them feel they are your mates, and you are there to work together with them on the same goal, namely, learning and sharing, things might change.

 

Also, I DO think you DO have an attitude kind of....

You say you surely have looked in the mirror and "its not you being the problem" but where there are two parties, its not always being one party causing the problems.

You have to work on it together, so also to work on yourself and your attitude.ESPECIALLY in this trade.

 

Background on myself: I am 47 and just started out this february, and it took a LOT of learning this year and changing my attitude even when I thought there was no need, I found that there WAS need and often it was in little things.

When you keep an open mind and show that you accept them for what they are, they often will open up and do the same.

Also you can earn respect by sharing your knowledge, when you find you can already do things they have yet to learn....

Be patient....

 

Its not easy but a real challenge to meet, and if you really want it, go for it and calm down and open your mind.

Then you will get there!!!  Good luck to you!

post #18 of 27

Because they all know better.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
post #19 of 27
Thread Starter 

This is bananas, not only do I get along with 99% of my classmates, I also get along with the upper class (seniors) as well as, all of the instructors.  I've been a Teacher's Assistant for almost a year now.  Not everyone in school dislikes me, however, you've assumed that my whole school dislikes me.  There is only a handful of classmates are constantly asking to borrow my equipment and come to school in dirty uniforms.  You've assumed the worse.

 

You people are so negative and none of you can read or interpret a sentence correctly.  What in the hell is wrong with some of you? "Get over it", "Deal with it", "my way or the highway", "listen to your instructor, they know more than you". 

 

:(Not one person ever asked if I ever said something to hurt someone's feelings.  Not one of you!  You assumed I was the bad guy because I am disgusted by what I've seen in my school.  

 

It's too bad you don't and will probably never know how nice I really am.:p

post #20 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheflayne View Post
 

 

 

 

 

She was covered in her broken hairs and bending over to make cold shrimp cups.  You mean you can just say to her "let me tell you this in private".  I didn't want to embarrass her in front of the kitchen and you think that's wrong?  Well, she never came with me and I'm sure the shrimp were covered in hair by the time she finished them.  They were for a catered private party.

post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Etherial View Post
 

 

.  You mean you can just say to her "let me tell you this in private".  I didn't want to embarrass her in front of the kitchen and you think that's wrong? 

No, I didn't mean nor say that at all. I passed no judgement on your nor her actions. I merely passed along my observation, which I believe has ruffled your feathers; for that I apologize. However at the same time does it make it a little easier to see how things can go sideways pretty fast with your fellow students resulting in attitude. Shoes on other foot type of thing?

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #22 of 27
Wow
post #23 of 27

I, too, would like to "Vent"...

 

 

Why do culinary schools take in students that have no previous  commercial culinary experience?

 

Why do culinary schools hire teachers or have staff that interact with the students on a daily basis that have no commercial culinary experience?

 

 

This whole thing with reality is getting out of hand--it's just not the way I imagined it would be........

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #24 of 27

I have to agree with some of this. 

The students at my school sicken me. Not all of them but some of them. Their uniforms are crap they don't know how to show up on time. etc etc etc. 

Honestly all everyone does at my school is smoke weed. It bothers me. *sigh* when will kids learn? I think never. They have to learn and fail and succeed on their own. 

It will work out on it's own. Do what you can but focus on you more. Just remember that you will be the one who will pass and go on to do great things. If they fail they fail it's their fault not yours.

post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by foodpump View Post
 

Why do culinary schools take in students that have no previous  commercial culinary experience?

 

Why do culinary schools hire teachers or have staff that interact with the students on a daily basis that have no commercial culinary experience?

 

Agreed....

 

The fact other students are observing this lack of quality in their classrooms and the instructors aren´t doing squat is absurd. 

Really if the girl with the f*cked uniform hasnt been informed by the instructor to straighten up , then i doubt a mere student can really do anything. 

 

Their are schools here that the instructors carry razors in their back pocket , and give them to students to go shave so they dont have facial hair when entering the classroom. If you dont enter class with the proper uniform you wont learn that day because you will be sent home. And your uniform is inspected daily ( just like the army ). 

 

Maybe your school is the problem....

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #26 of 27
Thread Starter 

OMG!!!!  THANK YOU so much for seeing what I'm seeing.  I appreciate your insight into what I see and hear on a daily basis.  To me, cooking professionally is serious business because you're dealing with someone life and one mistake can put someone at risk.  

 

I thought it is a requirement that the instructors be certified with ACF, in order to teach.  

 

Foodpump:  I've never worked in a commercial kitchen before, but trust me, I throw down!  I am 57 and have been cooking since I was 12.  I started collecting cookbooks before I could read and cut out recipes I saw in newspapers.  I had a scrap book I kept them in.  I used to watch this cooking show on tv in Philly called "Cooking With Florence".  I think she wore a white nurse's uniform.  This was in the 50/60s.  I learned my knife skills from watching Jacques Pepin, Charlie Trotter, the CIA, Johnson & Wales, and reading various books(on tv, of course).  I practiced constantly and sometimes had minor cuts, but never gave up; I even bought "good" knives back then (Farberware).  My first dish was at age 12; I made shepherd's pie from the Fannie Farmer's Cookbook.  I later moved on to Spaghetti Carbonara, then to Veal Marsala and then Beef Bourguignon (Julia Child).  My Marsala came out purple (I didn't any Marsala wine, so I used a Cab), but it was still good, if you overlooked the purple.  I partially agree with you on admittance, but I think students should be required to take an assessment test to determine skill sets and then be placed accordingly.  If everyone worked in a commercial kitchen prior to school, then the world could miss out on some great cooks.

 

To me only, it's frustrating working with someone who doesn't have a clue.  I think like-minded students should be placed in the same classes and advanced students, vice versa.  I made my first hollandaise in 1982 and poached my first egg.  I went on to make Benedict Poulet.  I was and still am passionate about food and beautiful vegetables.  I didn't know the effect school would have on my cooking, but I've learned so much in 2 years.  My reductions are outstanding and now I can make a beautiful, golden, duck consomme.  Despite the roughness of my school, I listen, watch the instructors, and learn more than I thought I could and will always continue to learn.

 

KaiqueKuisine:  I'm impressed with the schools you mentioned.  My daughter's school was like that.  Every morning they lined them up in the kitchen and checked their fingernails, shoes, and uniform, etc. and she said if you were not in proper uniform, you were sent home.  Wonderful! I was hoping this school would have those same criteria, but unfortunately, my school is situated in "the hood" where the teachers are afraid of some of the students; rightly so.  I am aware that their behaviors, poor personal hygiene, and lack of dedication to the vocation are a result of poor upbringing.  It just depresses me, which is why I vented here.  VENTING IS OVER.

 

Thanks so much.

 

Anyway, I appreciate all of your input (even if some were misunderstood) and will keep my eye on next semester"  The Final Frontier.


Edited by Etherial - 11/7/13 at 7:03am
post #27 of 27

We are by no means negative. I have hired and or employed at least 100 students over my lifetime.I am simply basing it on averages.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
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