A Day in the Life of a Culinary Student at BOCES

Mia Pandža, Editor-in-Chief

Packing her regular school bag and her culinary uniform, Maya Turano gets ready for another day at BOCES. She is a senior at Orchard Park High School, and attends the culinary arts program at Ormsby Educational Center daily. Here’s what a day looks like for a culinary student at BOCES.

Since she’s a senior, BOCES classes take place from first to fourth period. All students are taken to the educational center located in East Aurora by bus. Upon arrival, she changes into her uniform, resembling Linguini’s from Ratatouille. 

“It keeps my clothes clean. I hate the hat, but I make it work,” she jokes.

Typically, to start class, there’s discussion as an introduction to the lesson for the day. Several videos are shown of the dish that is to be made. For example, during the soup unit, the teacher may show several different chefs making French onion soup. Other units include knife cuts, eggs, stocks, and sauces.  

Groups of students are given different recipes for the same dish. They work in the kitchen or the bake shop, depending on what the dish may be. 

All ingredients and materials are supplied. The teacher is present for any help needed, but the cooking or baking is mainly independent. 

“Once we finished the french onion soup, we plate it for him. He grades us based on taste and presentation.”

Grades received in BOCES classes affect students’ averages at the high school.

Once an assignment is done, students clean their own areas, do dishes, and put materials away. At the end of a day, students fill out a log based on their day. They score their own preparedness, participation, attitude, and completion. Once handed in, the teacher scores the students himself.

Students once again change out of their uniforms and head back to the high school to finish their school day. 

“It’s one of my favorite classes and I look forward to it every day. If it’s something you’re interested in, it’s worth taking. It’s such a fun class, I really recommend it.”

Maya in her culinary uniform. (Mia Pandža)