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9NEWS: SWC & RIEP Class Chefs Initiative

Class Chefs is a student restaurant takeover initiative created by South West Connect (SWC) in 2012, and has been funded by Regional Education Industry Partnership (RIEP) since 2019.

Class Chefs gives a group of up to 30 students the chance to run a restaurant for the day. They plan, cook, prepare and serve a 3 course fine dining experience (or 6 tasting plates) for up to 120 paying customers within a 3 hour session – comparable to some of the busiest restaurants in the city.

Under the guidance of the restaurant staff and the SWC team, high school students aspiring a career in hospitality will get a hands-on experience in all aspects of running a restaurant, front and back of house. Class Chefs allows students to experience working under pressure, demonstrate strong communication, outstanding teamwork, workplace time management and problem-solving skills. These skills are often difficult to demonstrate or master in the classroom yet are crucial in the workplace.

The Class Chefs format surpasses a traditional ‘watch and follow’ learning process, instead allowing students to take the lead, gain real life, commercial experience and work practices. This is a vital link to industry that students require to succeed beyond the classroom or training environment. The longevity and effectiveness of the Class Chefs initiative is a result of the contribution of all supporters of the program since 2012, thank you.

SWC Class Chefs Initiative 2012-2023 (PDF Download)

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