Q: Name? Age?
A. Ryan Hay. 21 years old.
Q. Program and year graduated?
A. Culinary Management graduated 2016.
Q. Why did you choose Humber College?
A. After touring the campus I really liked the look of the labs and the set up that Humber has for the culinary programs. I also live close to the school and it was easily accessible.
Q. Which class did you find most beneficial?
A. A la carte. I got to be part of the first class to work on the food truck and I absolutely loved it. The class really gave you an idea of what the industry is like and prepares you for the workforce well.
Q. What do you enjoy about your career?
A. I really enjoy that I can work with food in an unconventional way. I’m able to work Monday to Friday and do so in an office setting. It is a very fun and creative environment and always has a new opportunity around the corner.
Q. What advice would you give future/current students taking this program?
A. Explore all your options. Don’t go in to the culinary program thinking that restaurants are the only job you can get from a culinary degree. There are so many jobs in the food industry that are available to you, you just need to go out and find them.
Q. What was the biggest obstacle you faced during your time as a student?
A. The biggest obstacle I faced was realizing that I didn’t want to work in restaurants. I wanted to do something with my career that nobody around me had ever done. I didn’t want to follow the conventional path that everyone else was taking. I had to reach out and make connections and break into the corporate world on my own and let my knowledge of food and my work ethic do the rest.
Q. In what ways did Humber prepare you for the work world?
A. Humber really taught me a lot about time management and being very organized. Even if your cooking skills aren’t the greatest, if you can learn to be super organized and manage your time very effectively, you can be successful in the culinary world. The cooking skills will come over time, but you need those two skills from the start.
Q. What opportunities would you urge other students to take advantage of?
A. The internship program can be such a good experience if you utilize it to suit you best. Instead of looking at the connections that students have made in the past, go out and find the place you really want to work. Make that connection yourself and use this experience to set yourself up the best that you can for the world after school. Also, I recommend the study abroad program. I went to Italy for 2 weeks with Humber and it was such an amazing experience and I did a lot of things there that I would not have done if I went on my own (going to a risotto farm, prosciutto production facility, balsamic vinegar production facility, etc.)
Q. In your opinion, what are 5 crucial skills needed to perform your job?
A. Organization, Time management, Self-motivation, Attention to detail, eagerness to learn
Q. At what age did you start cooking and why?
A. I started cooking when I was about 4 or 5 years old. I come from a separated family, so I spent a lot of time in the kitchen with my mom and dad when they were each living on their own. I think being in the kitchen so young and spending so much time there with my parents I really developed a love for food at a really young age. My mom and I would make devilled eggs all the time and that was the first thing I ever learnt how to cook on my own. From there I would try to make things that I saw on the food network all the time. For as long as I can remember I’ve always wanted to be a Chef. I started cooking because I really loved it and was so passionate about it and that’s why I’m still doing it to this day.
Q. How did your experience at Humber help you find employment after graduation?
A. The internship program really helped me. I did my internship at Sobeys corporate head office in their test kitchen. Once that was finished, I got a job working as an assistant development Chef at Aramark through the Humber job board. A few years later, the Chef I worked with at Sobeys reached out and had an opportunity for me to work with her again but at Walmart Canada and that is where I currently work. I really owe every job I’ve had to Humber and the services they offer whether it be their internship program or their job board.