Culinary Construction Complete
December 23, 2016
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At the end of the 2015-2016 school year, and throughout the summer, Westwood Regional Jr./Sr. High School began construction to move and remodel the culinary room. It was planned to be completed by the start of the 2016-2017 school year, but ended up going two months over schedule. After a long wait for culinary teacher, Chef Rusty Obra, and all the culinary classes, the room was finished on November 30, 2016.
There are many new changes to the room including the location of it. The room was moved across the courtyard of the high school in order to accommodate changes to the stoves. The biggest changes to the room itself are the stoves and ventilation. The stoves in the old room were electric. They are now gas, which works to heat up quicker and cook things faster. Also, unlike the old room, this room has ventilation for each kitchen, in the old room there was only a fan and windows.
Another big addition is a separate demo kitchen in the middle of the room. It is easier for the students to gather around to view the demo of the food they will be cooking. Regarding the demo kitchen, Obra said, “It makes it easier for me to not have to struggle to find a place to cook, and it prevents me from having to take over one kitchen. It also allows everyone to view it more easily.”
Although the room is moved into and able to be used for teaching and cooking, the room still needs the technology aspects. Cameras and monitors will be put in above the demo station for students to be able to see what Chef Obra is making, so that when it comes to their turn to cook, they know exactly what to do.
Obra is happy about the changes that have been made. He said, “The room is great, it really makes me more energized and excited to come to school. The students are also excited about it, even the students who don’t take the class are now excited and considering taking the class next year.”