MCTC Culinary Arts Program Announces First Graduate | MCTC

MCTC Culinary Arts Program Announces First Graduate

image of Willetta Barger, First Culinary Arts GraduateMaysville, KY (December 6, 2011). The Maysville Institute of Culinary Arts is proud to present Willetta Barger as the first graduate of Maysville Community and Technical Colleges (MCTC) Culinary Arts Program. Barger, a resident of Maysville, attributes her love for cuisine to being raised by a farm family in Bracken County.

Being from a family of great cooks, I learned the fundamentals early in life, said Barger. I could cook a three course meal with dessert for eight people by the time I was eleven. I read everything I could about cooking. Julia Child and other great chefs were very inspirational to me, and I began to learn classical cooking. I wanted to be a chef more than anything, but there were no culinary schools close by for me to attend.

While pursuing careers in early childhood education and horticulture, in addition to raising her daughter, Barger became, in her words, the bake sale mom. I got into BBQ as a hobby, then as a professional. Imagine my surprise when, over two years ago, I saw an article in the local paper about MCTC starting a culinary program! It was a dream come true for me.

Barger hopes to remain in Maysville to practice her culinary skills.

I have studied under three great chefs at the Maysville Institute of Culinary Arts, each bringing their own knowledge set and experience to the table, said Barger. I've learned that dreams do come true through hard work and steadfastness. I never gave up my dream.

We are very proud to have Willetta Barger as our first Associate Degree graduate in the MCTC Culinary Program, said Barbara Campbell of MCTCs Workforce Solutions. Willetta has been an exemplary student and her love for the profession shows in her work, both in and out of the classroom.

The 60-67 credit hour AAS in Culinary Arts program is designed to prepare students for careers in Culinary Arts, Food and Beverage Management, Restaurant Management, Catering, Institutional Food Service, and as Professional Chefs. Course work covers a broad spectrum: the preparation of basic and specialized foods, catering and special event planning, international cuisine, baking and pastry arts, nutrition, sanitation, management techniques and functions, cost control, purchasing, and culinary fundamentals.

With the footprint of the program now in place and the expansion of the program to the Cox Building on the horizon, says Campbell, the program is poised for many more students and graduates. We appreciate all that the City of Maysville, the Carlson Family and all others involved have done to make this program a reality for our community.

The Maysville Institute of Culinary Arts is located at 22 East Third Street in Maysville. For more information about the Culinary Arts Program contact MCTCs Workforce Solutions extension 66120.