- B.S. University of Notre Dame
- A.O.S. Culinary Institute of America
What are the strengths of SICE's Program?
I believe the best strength of our program is that all of the instructors truly care about their students. The faculty has time to prepare for our courses, and we are encouraged to do professional development. We are always pushing each other to improve our instructional plans, cuisine, and delivery systems.
The other strength of our department is education comes first. We could do larger volume and push our students unrealistically, but education would suffer. I have never seen a time at the Secchia Institute where we were told that learning should take a back seat to our business. This is truly unique, and a great attribute of our program and it encourages faculty to focus on student success.
What do you like best about being a SICE professor?
I love the opportunity to work with young chefs and to see their progress from the beginning of the program to when they graduate. It is incredibly rewarding to see students graduate each year and know they are so gifted and ready for the real world because of our program and their hard work.
I also love being able to push myself to deliver better education and produce more unique food. My class is Modern American Cuisine, which means I must stay up-to-date on the cutting edge of cuisine. I have always been encouraged to create the cuisine which I find unique. It is fantastic to see the students’ enthusiasm when they understand what you are trying to teach. There is no better feeling in the world than when a student embraces their new ability and passion for cuisine. Our industry is a fantastic career - the harder you work, the better you will be rewarded. In the kitchen, there isn’t any room for prejudice or bigotry. Chefs embrace anyone who comes to work with integrity and a genuine passion for creating the best food they can on that day. A chef’s career is at best an expression of love for the people that we are serving and for those we share the passion of our profession.
I also love seeing the success of my students, it is great to see their food pictures on Facebook or Instagram.
What do you know now that you wished you knew when you first started out?
Take care of your health better! Many Chefs are so driven that other things in their life get neglected, health being one of them. Finding ways to deal with stress is very important; you need to develop ways to manage stress positively. I wish someone would have told me to do yoga, meditate, to get involved in sports or just exercise on a regular basis.
What is your current obsession?
Food and Learning! I love learning new methods, recipes, techniques or plating styles. I try to embrace all that is new.
Who is your hero? Why?
My hero is every chef that genuinely expresses their passion for food. Chefs can talk all day about food with other chefs. We are craftsmen, and that is a reason to be very proud. Craftsmen will try to create a great new way to express their craft and spend the next decade trying to improve upon the prior method. We strive for perfection every day, and while it may never be obtained, it never deters our desire to try again.
- CA 244 Modern American Cuisine
- CA 180 Culinary Internship
Get a Taste of Success!
Contact me with any questions that you have to secure your ticket to an exciting career in the hospitality industry.