The PB&J Fund has concluded our pilot partnership with CAYIP (Community Attention Youth Internship Program).  Six teen interns joined us for four weeks of intensive culinary training, while also providing much needed operational support and helping out in classes with younger students.  Aliyah, Cedric, Donshea, Patrick, Pyi, and Nykala brought great energy and curiosity into our space and we’re grateful for their efforts!

The interns received safety training, learned a variety of knife skills, practiced setting up food prep stations, deboned a variety of meats, studied how to develop and balance flavors, and were introduced to the expectations of working in a professional kitchen.  All left more confident in their culinary skills and four who achieved perfect attendance also went home with their very own professional chef’s knife.

Each intern was fortunate enough to gain real world experience through the generous support of partner restaurants.  We are deeply grateful to Brasserie Saison, Commonwealth Restaurant & Skybar, The Alley Light, and The Pie Chest for opening up their hearts and kitchens to provide such a unique learning experience for the interns.  We’re thrilled to announce that one of our interns landed a permanent part-time job with her partner restaurant!

“My favorite part of the experience was learning different ways to cook. About myself, I learned that I can work under pressure,” said one intern, Aliyah Cobbs. “The whole experience was really fun. “

Their time with us culminated with a culinary cook-off.  Teams were challenged to come up with a recipe from scratch, pulling from all they had learned over their time in the kitchen.  The final creations of shrimp lettuce wraps and roasted chicken with risotto were excellent and both teams had much to be proud of.

Many thanks to our very own CHEF Kids Program Manager John Robinson and Executive Chef Antwon Brinson for all their efforts to develop a thoughtful curriculum, create a fun and meaningful learning environment, and motivate these young folks to follow their dreams.