Vocational Programming Update

Kristin Turner, Robyn Sherman and Casey Roggow

Kristin Turner, Robin Sherman and Casey Roggow

The Making of a Culinary Arts Program

 The instructors of the Culinary Arts vocational training program welcomed their first students on September 12, 2016. The first class for the pilot was a group of ten students – seven referred from KPEP and three from Michigan Works. This vocational training program is a partnership between KPEP, the Michigan Career and Technical Institute (MCTI), Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS), Canteen Services and Water Street Coffee Roaster. A lot of work went into putting the program together, so we’d like to introduce you to those who are making it happen.

Robin Sherman is the Vice President of Operations for Canteen Services and responsible for a Regional team, IT Department, 34 correctional kitchens and 31 commissary accounts in Michigan and Indiana. Robin worked closely with MCTI to develop the 10-week curriculum that meets the requirements of MCTI along with the specific needs of the students who will complete the class at KPEP.

She is the Past President for the Association of Correctional Food Service Affiliates (ACFSA), Certified Food Safety Instructor for ServSafe®, Certified Correctional Food Systems Manager (CFSM), and Certified Correctional Food Service Professionals (CCFP). She also is the recipient of a Doctorate in Food Services Honors presented in February, 2015 by NAFEM.

And of course without excited, dedicated instructors, the class would not be happening at all. Canteen Services hired two amazing people to lead training.

Kristin Turner is the lead instructor of the Culinary Arts Program. Kristin is also a Food Safety Instructor and Proctor for ServSafe®. She went to school for hospitality management and pastry arts and worked for two years at a local bakery that was voted best in Columbus. She then served in the US Army as a nutrition care specialist where she learned more about cooking and dietetics before being stationed in Landstuhl, Germany, at the largest hospital in Europe. After coming home, Kristin found the amazing opportunity to teach this wonderful class and help people make a better life for themselves.

“I’m very proud of this program,” she said. “The students really seem to be getting the most out of it. I can’t wait to see them thrive in the workplace after they graduate.”

Casey Roggow is the Assistant Pastry Chef for the Culinary Arts Program and a certified Food Safety Instructor and Proctor for ServSafe®. Casey attended the Art Institute of Indianapolis and received her Associates degree in Baking & Pastry. She is proficient in making European cakes & tortes, chocolate candies, and working with sugars. Casey also was taught the basics of baking and pastry; her favorite class was advance patisserie, where she could really express her talent and show her creative side. Casey’s love and passion came from always being in the kitchen on holidays with her grandma. When decorating cakes or baking, Casey gets the biggest joy out of showing her artistic and creative talents.

Vocational Programming Expansion

In addition to plans to integrate our Culinary Arts Program into our new coffee shop, plans are progressing to expand our vocational programming offerings through MCTI. Perfection Commercial Services is currently working with MCTI to develop a 10-week curriculum for Custodial Services vocational training. This program will begin training students in January, 2017, and will be located at the Park Street facility along with the Culinary Arts Program. Our next newsletter will highlight those involved in this exciting program.

These programs did not happen overnight. As a matter of fact, they’ve been in the works for over a year. We are so appreciative to everyone who has partnered with us to make these opportunities happen for KPEP residents, Michigan Works customers and for the community.

Many employers in our community face challenges in finding qualified employees who are reliable, dependable and motivated. We’re excited to be a part of a solution for these employers. We are even more excited to see what our students are able to do when they learn how good it feels to learn valuable skills and become part of something bigger than themselves. Employment is where purpose can be found and a re-imagined life can begin.