KDU Culinary Facilities Offer A Taste of the Real World

 
Student Regine Chew (extreme left) putting her service skills to the real test at Saveur restaurant in KDU University College.  In KDU’s culinary kitchens, meals are prepared with exacting industry standards, from observing hygiene to maintaining order in food preparation. Here, student Bryan Tong (extreme right) ensures all starters and main courses are prepped correctly before the food exits the kitchen. 
Students of KDU University College (KDUUC) School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts (SHTCA) are savouring the real world experience these days.   

Ever since KDUUC moved to its new purpose-built campus at Utropolis Glenmarie last month, the students have been enjoying the benefit of hands-on experience at its 65,000 sq ft culinary arts facilities, recognised as being one of the best in South East Asia. 

The facilities, consisting of 13 specialist teaching labs, consist of hot and cold food kitchens, as well as ample space for niche studies in molecular gastronomy, wine, chocolate and coffee, and charcuterie. 

It also includes two variable restaurants – called Mirabelle and Saveur – as well as a fully equipped coffee lab, the 8ighty 7even by Coffex. Both the restaurants and the coffee lab are open to members of the public for lunch, allowing diners to enjoy high quality meals prepared by the students under the watchful eyes of experienced lecturers. 

Here, students learn to promote the restaurants, seat guests and attend to a guest’s every need. Be it a preference for hot or cold drinks, or even to replace potato wedges with mashed potatoes, students take textbook lessons and put them to practice in real life. At any one time, they could be serving some 20 to 30 paying customers.  

In the coffee lab, students also learn barista skills in addition to picking up some entrepreneurial skills while managing and promoting a coffee outlet. 

These training grounds have been carefully designed to provide students hands-on lessons, right from the second semester of their first year of studies, helping them to hit the ground running as soon as they enter the job market. 

Kitty Lee, Head of KDU University College’s SHTCA, said, “KDU is a firm believer in providing real-world experiences for its students to give our students an edge over the rest. We believe that students should be provided with early exposure to the working world as it reinforces the theoretical knowledge they learn in classrooms, develops character and broadens mindsets, effectively preparing them for real-world employment upon graduation.”  

At KDU, the employability rate of graduates is high; 97% of the SHTCA graduates are employed by graduation, out of which 30% obtain employment overseas. This is a result of the practical experience and real-world exposure students receive on campus as well as in renowned affiliated hospitality institutions in Switzerland, France and Italy. 

As part of their academic training, KDU’s SHTCA students rotate their roles at the front of house, in the kitchens and behind the coffee bar, all the while under the supervision of KDU’s dedicated team of teaching staff who are well-versed with the requirements of this industry. 

Regine Chew Jia Yi, a First Year student of the Diploma in International Hotel and Tourism Management programme, said, “This is my first time training at Saveur, and it is an interesting yet nerve-wrecking experience because these are external guests and my grades are judged based on my service performance. But I am confident, after all my training which is weekly throughout this semester, I will be well prepared for the real world when I join the workforce.” 

“I learned the speed in the kitchen is vital when preparing a three-course meal for many guests at one sitting. It is quite demanding, but by actual training in the kitchen, I can translate all that is taught in class into action. Moreover, I now understand and appreciate the teamwork and communication with the team, which is important in order to complete the whole service without any mishap,” said Bryan Tong Wen Jiun, a Second Year student from the same diploma programme. 

To find out how you can hit the ground running with KDU University College’s SHTCA programmes, go to www.kdu.edu.my or call 03-5565 0538 (KDU University College, Utropolis, Glenmarie) / 03-7953 6688 (KDU College, Damansara Jaya). 
Media enquiries : Belinda Chee Senior Corporate Communications Manager KDU University College

Telephone : +603 5565 0538    

Emailsb.chee@kdu.edu.my