Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Culinary Students Put Their Skills to Work for Olive Crest Children’s Home

This winter, Art Institute of California – Orange County students in Chef Corey Vuu’s Management by Menu class were challenged to create weekly meal plans for individuals living on a $50 per week meal budget. Those meal plans were for former foster children now living independently with the support of Olive Crest Children’s Home. Ranging in ages from 16-24, these young adults are learning to take care of themselves and manage a budget.

Chef Vuu’s class was inspired to action by this assignment and took it one step further by organizing a food drive. Boxes were placed throughout the school and by the end of the quarter, the students had collected over 24 boxes of food.

“During these difficult economic times, it is very important to reach out to those who need a little acknowledgement,” Chef Vuu said. “I am glad to share with my students the importance of sharing, the definition of hospitality and our responsibilities as chefs and citizens to do what we can with the skills we were blessed with.”

The project and canned food drive has carried over into the spring and the class plans to present Olive Crest with the menu plans at the end of the quarter. Plans are also in place to have a small group come to the school to learn fundamental cooking skills in one of The Art Institute of California – Orange County kitchens. Special thanks to Culinary Management student Deborah Gillespie for all her work in coordinating this outreach.

For more information about the work Art Institute of California – Orange County students do with local nonprofits, contact Veronica Orozco at 714.830.0221 or

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