Saturday, May 05, 2007

Back to School

After driving for 13 hours I rolled onto the campus of the Culinary Institute of America at 11 p.m. on Thursday. This is the first time in 10 years that I have been back. Ten years ago I walked across stage and received a hand shake from Ferdinand Metz, then President of the college. About a month after that I was informed that I had to retake a class. The CIA has very strict standards, and I had missed more then 1 day due to illness which meant I did not pass the class. Of course, by the time I had noticed that I had to retake the class I was working away. So, long story short I have returned to college to take a 3-week class.

So far, although around campus there are many structural changes, I haven't noticed much change to the school. Michael Ruhlman was in my class when I originally went to the CIA. If you have read The Making of a Chef then you read the story of my education.

As I rolled through campus on the why to my dorm, I was shocked at how many kids were walking around in a party-like atmosphere. I thought, this would have never have happened 10 years ago. Then I started remembering some of the things I was involved with and realized that the students were the same as me; age and actions.

Checking into the dorms I was shocked by to coldness of the cinder block walks and size of the room. My new 20-year-old roomy Woodrow was studying away for a final in Food Service Math (Algebra) the next day. He was on overload, an allnighter ahead.

I am excited about tomorrow, my first day of class. I know I will be looking at it through different eyes and wonder what I will see. What people say in the industry is that the students don't get the say experience today. I will see first-hand starting tomorrow.

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