Culinary Arts Extravaganza and Job Expo provides career opportunities


Chef Mark Tydell showing a student fresh produce. The produce is grown organically in local farmers market. Photo credit: abraham venegas

Abraham Venegas, Staff Writer

Carved squash, brewed coffee and raffles were one of many things that the Culinary Arts Extravaganza and Job Expo had to offer for people with an interest in that field on Friday, Oct. 24, at the Student Center.

The first of its kind, the expo was organized by the Culinary Arts program and Goodwill as it featured food demonstrators, educational career presentations, employers and learning booths ranging from kitchen supplies to spices.

The event kicked off with opening remarks by President of Cerritos College Dr. Linda Lacy and Department Chair of Culinary Arts and instructor Chef Michael Pierini.

After the remarks, student were welcome to roam around and get exposed to the different presentations by the vendors.

Culinary Arts Instructor Ernest Lew explains how the event got orchestrated.

“Michelle from Goodwill, she has connections with employers, and because she is with us here at Cerritos, she organized mainly for Cerritos College students.”

Culinary arts major Elisa Corona said what she found intriguing about the event, “The different vendors that come and we get to sample everything so we get to see how it is from the corporate side.”

From squashes to apples, the booth of Mark Tydell, corporate chief for worldwide produce, had a display of local farmers market vegetables and fruits.

Tydell’s intent is to support and create awareness for local farmers.

“Local farms are great because you get an sense of the community, get to see the chefs in your local restaurants, see what they’re buying and what they’re putting in the menu.”

Cerritos College alumnus and student at Cal State Pomona, Jessica Otero, was representing the Collins College of Hospitality Management, informing students of what the university had to offer and the transfer process.

“Let them (students) know what roadblocks that may occur, help them get around them to be successful and let them know it’s achievable,” she said.