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ICTC: Culinary arts students put talents to use

by DESTINY DAVID, Gazette Student News Reporter on October 26, 2012 11:00 AM

Culinary arts, the practice or manner of preparing food. At the Indiana County Technology Center (ICTC), the culinary arts students put that definition to its proper use.

Under the direction of instructor Chef Dennis Gehly and instructional Assistant Chef Vicky Leatherwood, the Culinary Arts students have shown the ICTC staff and the public on several occasions that they can really make food look and taste delicious by adding their special techniques.

The month of October provided a variety of events and activities that brought excitement to the Culinary program. On Oct. 4, six culinary arts students -- Melanie Barr, Amber Davidson, Alyssa Dennison, Brittany Dillen, Katilyn Smith and Kimberly Wheatcroft -- were accompanied by their instructor, Chef Gehly, to Giant Eagle to support them on Grocers Fight Cancer Day.

While at Giant Eagle, the students made spaghetti squash with shrimp marinara, Cajun chicken alfredo and spicy Asian pork for customers to sample.

On Oct. 10, the entire Culinary Arts class took a field trip to Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington. The ICTC is proud to currently have several former students attending Westmoreland County Community College (WCCC) and participating in an apprenticeship program with Nemacolin.

I asked senior Melanie Barr her opinion on the trip to Nemacolin. Barr was very impressed with the resort. She said it was encouraging to see former classmates of hers working there and gave her possibilities for her own future career.

Barr, who has been in Culinary Arts for three years, said she chose Culinary Arts because she loves feeding hungry people. Barr plans to attend Robert Morris University and major in restaurant management.

The Culinary Arts students recently baked and decorated more than 100 cupcakes for S&T Bank. Next on their agenda is getting ready to prepare and serve food at the Indiana County Free Library's Evening in the Stacks -- "The Best Party in Town." Evening in the Stacks is the largest annual fundraising event for the Indiana Free Library.

You can learn more about the Culinary Arts program and "The Restaurant at ICTC" by checking out the website at

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