In the lead-up to the Kilmarnock Campus graduation we will unveil our graduation prizewinners. At the Kilmarnock graduation, there are 10 recipients in total.
Next up is Emma White, HNC Professional Cookery, who is receiving the Student of the Year – Hospitality and Tourism Award.
After coming home from my travels in Thailand and Australia, I really wanted to change career and start my own catering business. I decided to come to college to start from scratch and get experience and knowledge of the industry.
I felt nervous as I was coming back as an older student, but as soon as I got there I knew I had made the right decision.
I learnt all aspects of cooking, starting from the basics and working my way up over the three years. I also worked in Salt & Barrel once a week with the rest of my class. We would rotate each week between working on starters, mains, desserts, and being the head chef. I also learnt how to make pastries, bread and all kinds of different desserts in the training restaurant.
I really enjoyed making desserts and sweet things, which has resulted in me making birthday cakes, which I really enjoy.
My highlight was definitely learning new skills in the kitchen and understanding how a kitchen is run, gaining experience from lots of different people as well as learning the business side of things.
I feel confident in a working kitchen, working under pressure and making all sorts of dishes I had never heard of or tried. I am now confident in the kitchen without worrying about giving myself food poisoning! I
I felt very shocked and honoured to get this award. I definitely wasn’t expecting it, I thought it was a joke at first!
I am now confident in going ahead with my new adventure and I’m excited about what’s to come.
I’ll be a full-time mum for the next year but, while having my hands full looking after my son, I will be making business plans and starting to build the foundations of our new business with my partner, who is also a chef.
I would definitely recommend this course to anyone young or older as the experience I have gained in the kitchen is amazing. Changing my career after 16 years of hairdressing is the best thing I have ever done.