HRC Students Coach Junior Chef Academy

Elementary students look on as Cypress Students coach them in food preparation.

From April 22 to 26, 11 Hotel, Restaurant, Culinary Arts students and graduates volunteered as Culinary Coaches for the third annual Junior Chef Academy (former Maple Master Chef Competition) at Commonwealth Elementary School in Fullerton. This event was organized by teacher Melissa Zaucha, and is the third time that Cypress College has helped mentor the budding bakers and cooks. 

A Cypress College Culinary Arts student helps fourth and fifth graders with a main course dish.

Each Cypress student or graduate spent the mornings, from 9 a.m. till noon, assisting five elementary school students from grades fourth to sixth. The Junior Chefs learned to make dishes from scratch, such as S’mores Chocolate Mousse and Penne Chicken Alfredo with Broccoli.

A Cypress College student serves food to elementary school students.

Culinary Arts instructor Chef Amanda Gargano encouraged her students to participate. She believes it’s important to “connect with the local community and inspire the next generation of culinary and hospitality leaders.”

“My students were able to showcase their leadership and teaching skills,” Gargano says. “They learned the importance of being very clear and concise with their directions and worked to thoroughly explain each step of the cooking process to the elementary school students.”