SUMMERVILLE, SC (WCSC) - Summerville High School students enrolled in the school's culinary arts program are cooking up a solid foundation for a successful career in the competitive food and beverage industry.
The students are working in a brand new, spacious, stainless steel kitchen inside the high school's Career and Technology Education Wing. The wing opened this school year at a cost around $5 million.
"The equipment is state of the art. Everything you'll see in a restaurant downtown or a major facility, the kids have that and some," said Eric Huff, a former executive chef helping instruct a couple hundred students who signed up this year. "We can do so much more now and actually do catering events for the school and whatever else so it's awesome," said Shaun Mitchell. Mitchell is senior at Summerville High School with aspirations of owning his own restaurant one day.
Charleston's food and beverage industry tops over $1 billion, with thousands of employees manning the many popular restaurants. Chef Huff wants to make sure the students who leave the classroom will be able to take the heat in the kitchen.
"After they leave the program they'll have all the necessities they need to work in any major restaurant with the skills employers are looking for," Huff said.