Carrie Skillen graduate of Chef Academy

After many years in publishing, Carrie is embarking on a new career journey to set up her own food business. She is a graduate of the Culinary Skills Certificate (July 2016) and now has the experience, skills and confidence to start something new. Here she tells us about her experience of the course…

What is your career background?

I run a B2B publishing business in the glass and ceramics industry and used to have an exhibitions company which has now been sold.  It’s very much a lifestyle business and is no longer full-time, so I’ve got time to take on a new venture. I decided it was time to do something different.

Why did you decide to take the course?

Eventually I’d like to set up my own food business, either as a private chef or running a coffee shop or bistro, so this is the perfect stepping stone to enable me to do that. I’ve already got the business know-how but was lacking the professional culinary skills to start a food business.  This course has been the start of my 3 year plan.

What made you choose WhitePepper?

As I live in Surrey, I looked at cookery schools in London but none of them jumped out at me. Then my brother recommended WhitePepper as he lives locally to the school. I looked at the website and the reviews were great.  When I phoned I got a good gut feeling and they had space available so I decided to book.

What skills do you feel have most improved?

My butchery skills have definitely improved along with general kitchen skills like time management. It’s a skill in itself to make sure a dish is out on time. The fish filleting was enjoyable but I was already quite confident with it.

What have you enjoyed most about the course?

I really liked the teaching style and that the course is so hands-on.  The demonstrations were brilliant but we were also left by ourselves to get on with it. This was a great way to learn as I didn’t feel mollycoddled. It made me think about how to do things myself, without being shown step-by-step.

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