Young chefs fired up for MA programme

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SRUC Elmwood celebrates its successful and expanding Hospitality Modern Apprenticeship programme as new partnerships are made, and what better time do to so than during Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink.

The Elmwood Campus of Scotland’s Rural College is committed to ensuring the next generation working in the hospitality, catering and restaurant industry maintains and develops its ‘back to basic’ skills.

Run in collaboration with local employers the Modern Apprenticeship (MA) programmes train and develop staff at a minimal cost to the employer.

During the programme employees gain relevant knowledge, practical skills, and a recognised qualification by combining college classes and on the job training. In turn, employers expand their team of staff, and have the advantage of training apprentices to their own requirements which best support their own business.

Roberto Gouveia, a chef apprentice at Craigrothie’s Kingarroch Inn, is passionate about food and when asked about his experience on the Modern Apprenticeship he said:“I really like the kitchen at the Elmwood campus. It’s really well set up and while I’m there I get to learn new techniques that complement my day to day job”.

Also benefitting from the course is Joseph Reddie who has been working part-time at the Links Trust Club House in St Andrews since he was at school.

Now on the MA programme, Joseph attends college every Tuesday, mixing with like-minded students and developing skills which he puts into practice at the Club House restaurant.

He said: “I learn about hygiene, table service and cooking to order at Elmwood which helps me in real life situations”.

Training co-ordinator at St Andrews University’s Catering Department, Jenny Donaldson, has two apprentice chefs (Nathan Boggan and Ruth Hanlon), both of which have progressed from Level 2 Hospitality Modern Apprenticeship to Level 3.

Commenting on her experience of the programme, Jenny said:“We have found it really beneficial - the standard of Ruth and Nathan’s work is tremendous, as is their work ethic.Both have spent time working alongside our chefs in the student halls of residence, with our hospitality team (assisting with weddings, dinners, graduation, the Open Golf Championship etc), and at the Byre Theatre restaurant/café.

Vicki Munro, hospitality team leader at SRUC Elmwood, described the apprenticeships as a ‘win-win situation: “The way that Elmwood Campus and the companies work together delivers a partnership that can only strengthen the local economy and the workforce of the future.”

For more information about how to train your work force with Modern Apprenticeship please contact Vicki by email at