Students of the Warsaw Area Career Center were joined by the mayor of Warsaw and members of the Warsaw-Kosciusko County Chamber of Commerce today in a ribbon cutting ceremony for Blue Apron.
Blue Apron is a tapas style restaurant at the WACC operated by students of the advanced culinary arts program. Students work, operate and manage the Blue Apron.
“Now we can offer 15 hours of college credit through Ivy Tech,” said Ronna Kawsky, WACC director principal. “After two years in the program, students will have not just those college credits for free, but state certification ServSafe.”
The program developed at WACC thanks to a pre-existing commercial kitchen . This allows more opportunity for 24 students in the course.
“I wanted to learn and experience new things,” said Karen Lopez, a senior at Warsaw Community High School and student at Blue Apron. “I’ve learned a lot and worked a lot so I know this will help with future jobs.”
Blue Apron gives students an experience that can be applied both today and in the future.
“I currently work for a restaurant and plan on studying business management and culinary arts in college,” said Joanna Taylor, a junior from WCHS. “This course helps me make that plan run smoother.”
Students in the program act in all functions of a normal restaurant, such as executive chef and general manager, on a two-week rotation. Cooking, dishwashing, menu selection and managing are a few positions that students work in Blue Apron.
“When students walk out of here, not only can they start as a second-semester freshmen at a culinary arts school, they can go into any restaurant with qualifications that most high school students don’t have,” said Theresa Daggett, culinary arts instructor. “We gear students toward careers in fine dining.”
The tapas style restaurant is open to the public from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday. The menu changes every two weeks and features soups, salads, sandwiches and desserts.
The school asks that diners make reservations in advance by calling 574-371-5030. Prices are under $10 as the dishes served are tapas style. All money and tips go back into the culinary arts program.