Twenty-one students completed The Academy of Culinary Arts four-month noncredit training programs that began this past March in the new Caesars Entertainment Wing for Hospitality and Gaming Studies at Atlantic Cape Community College’s Charles D. Worthington Atlantic City Campus. An awards ceremony recognizing the culinary students’ achievement was held at the campus, Tuesday, June 23, and for baking students, Tuesday, June 30.
The ceremonies began with Chef Kelly McClay, dean of the Academy of Culinary Arts, welcoming guests, followed by Dr. Otto Hernandez, vice president of academic affairs, stressing the importance of the graduates continuing their education, as well as always respecting their profession. Virgil Elam of Mays Landing, valedictorian of the Culinary Program, delivered the Culinarian’s Code during their graduation, and Maureen Marsh of Grenloch, Baking and Pastry Program valedictorian, delivered the oath at the June 30 ceremony.
Students who completed the Culinary Training Program are Leonardo Concepcion, Atlantic City; Elizabeth D’Andrea, Galloway; Michael Dash, Somers Point; Mara Lee Del Rosario, Mays Landing; Virgil Elam, Mays Landing; David Flemming, Galloway; Janice Mekhail, Egg Harbor Township; Joseph Latorre, Atlantic City; Joyce McManus, Atlantic City; Craig Persiano, Egg Harbor Township; and Ronald Rodriguez, Egg Harbor Township.
Like many in South Jersey, culinary student David Flemming of Galloway was laid off from working table games at Revel Casino. “I needed a change of pace and wanted to try something new. This was an excellent opportunity.”
“This was an amazing class. We all pushed each other to do the best we could. It was like a cooking competition in here everyday,” said culinary student Joseph Latorre of Atlantic City, who also was laid off from Revel. Latorre’s wife is Academy of Culinary Arts Chef Educator Ruth Latorre, who leads the noncredit Baking and Pastry Program.
Students who completed the Baking and Pastry Training Program are Yuling Liu, Pleasantville; Monica Gomez, Linwood; Priscilla DiMario, Atlantic City; Maureen Marsh, Grenloch; Terri DiSomma-Rossi, Galloway; Mary Creedon, Ventnor; Cynthia Consalvo, Margate; Debra Myers, Northfield; Jodi Stambler, Ventnor; and Rosemarie English, Galloway.
Yuling Liu will start her next chapter with the Borgata Baking Company working under Borgata’s Executive Pastry Chef Thaddeus DuBois, a former executive pastry chef of the White House.
“I am blessed,” a jubilant Liu said after the ceremony, in regard to her new career opportunity.
The Culinary Training Program begins again Aug. 17, and the Baking and Pastry Training Program, Aug. 24, at the Atlantic City Campus, 1535 Bacharach Blvd. Cost for each program is $5,895. For information, contact Judy DeSalvo at (609) 343-5624 or firstname.lastname@example.org.