RUTLAND – For many college students, one of the biggest adjustments is learning how to make meals – with food service providers and dining halls to help. While some dorms and student centers are equipped with shared kitchen space, students often lack the skills to cook the food they want.
College of St. Joseph’s Wellness Coordinator and Farm Manager Kimberly Griffin, and Community Engagement Coordinator Meggan Lloyd have teamed up with Rutland Area Farm and Food Link’s Everyday Chef program to present “Life Beyond Ramen,” an in-depth, hands on learning experience that aims to teach students the ins and outs of the kitchen.
“The typical college student does not know how to cook themselves a meal, which means upon graduation – when dining halls are no longer a go-to option – pizza delivery and fast food become staples,” Griffin said. “By offering this kind programming, easy, quick, budget-friendly, whole meal preparation, we are really offering our students life skills for college and beyond.”
The Everyday Chef program wants individuals to “feel confident in the kitchen,” according to RAFFL’s website, and conducts cooking classes and workshops in the greater Rutland region.
The program engages local chefs and instructors to teach a variety of cooking methods. In addition, Everyday Chef “holds demonstrations and outreach events to promote local food and local farms as a pathway to community engagement, health and wellness.”
The four sessions at College of St. Joseph begin Oct. 28 and will run through Dec. 9, looking to educate students on food and kitchen safety, how to cook with microwaves and slow cookers, knife skills, meal preparation, budgeting and shopping and much more.
Students will have “homework” assigned after each session, including reviewing recipes, USDA food and nutrition guidelines and researching table settings and good hospitality.
“Life Beyond Ramen” is free and open to all CSJ students.