Breaking News

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Revelation from Obama’s chef: ‘I teach in university but I never attended one’

Obama's chef
President Barack Obama’s chef, Edwin Scholly, never attended any university for a degree programme. He embraced cooking instead as his first choice. But his career brought him fame and fortune in the past 20 years, such that he became a chef to George Bush, Bill Clinton, Obama and the Queen of England.
Scholly was in Lagos recently for this year’s 13-episode cooking competition, tagged ‘Making of the Chef’, a reality show organised by Rhodium Chef Global and Anchor Digital Media in partnership with Power Oil. He said his dream was to raise a national team for Nigeria that would compete in the Olympic Culinary Art.
Speaking on his qualification, he said: “I never saw the inside of any institute in my life. I never went to any university and today I teach in the university. Skills, discipline, understanding and common sense are vital for success in life. Everybody thinks he is a good chef but what makes the difference is skill and knowledge”.
He described the ongoing cooking reality show as an educational challenge, noting that Nigeria had so many hidden talents. “If we can gather them together, we will give the rest of the world a big challenge. There is so much talent to develop in this country that my team don’t even know where to start. My dream is to put Nigerian Olympic team together for culinary art. We tried it last year when the culinary Olympics was going on but we could not raise the amount of money fast enough to take our contestants we had in season one”.
Scholly commended Africa for being the only continent he travelled to host such competition. He said he would continue to scout for a team that would live his dream of having a Nigerian Olympic team in culinary art.
The Executive Producer, Making of the Chef competition, Idono Edewor-Gbenro, said the programme was initiated to encourage people with the passion for cooking. She faulted the popular belief that cooking was a low rated job reserved for house- maids.
“In developed countries, culinary art is a unique skill. Our goal is to change lives, one chef at a time”, she added.
She said auditions were held in different cities from where 20 contestants emerged. According to her, the best three contestants that would emerge at the next stage of the contest would travel to the Strafford University Baltimore for more training.
Idono-Gbenro said the 20 shortlisted contestants would be awarded a certificate of participation signed by Master Chef and the Director of Culinary School from Strafford University, USA and later employed by Spar, the largest of hypermarket stores in the country. She said the overall winner of the competition would bag a study scholarship that could run to a degree programme at the Strafford University.
Also speaking, the Marketing Director, Rhodium Chef Global, Moses Edewor, noted that foreign nationals mostly dominated the Nigerian cooking industry. He said the competition would reverse the situation by retooling the culinary skills of talented Nigerians and providing them high paying jobs in the sector.
“We want people to know that becoming a chef is not the regular houseboy that rich people hire in their homes. We want people to know that becoming a chef is also a six-figure job. Every time we go out to a nice restaurant and you were served a good meal, if you ask to meet the chef who prepared the meal, you will discover that the chef was from Lebanon, Europe or other foreign countries. Nigerians may be behind the scene but they never appear as the master chef”, he said.
Edewor lauded the life-changing impact of the contest, saying, “It is amazing how this show can touch lives. One of the guys that emerged at the top three in season one has actually been promoted three times in his place of work within a short period. He is now an executive chef where he works. Cooking is a talent. Culinary is something Nigeria has to take more serious,” he added.
Speaking on behalf of SPAR, John Goldsmith promised instant employment for all the 20 shortlisted participants. He said SPAR would also create more job opportunities for those that would participate in the third edition of the event next year.
He commended the organisers for their resilience in launching Season 2 of the competition, describing it as a great achievement. He expressed concern over the low employability of people in the country, stressing that his company would continue to key into initiatives that would enhance the skills of Nigerians and make them employable.
“Anyone that believes in the Nigerian story will definitely participate in this kind of effort”, he said.
Also speaking, Isioma Omumero Ogwilaya, the Business Development Executive, Anchor, Digital Media, the production crew handling the project, said the project offered an opportunity for learning new skills in cooking and modern packaging of food. She said such an empowerment programme would keep many skilled youths in good employment.
While encouraging skills acquisition among youths, PR and Event Manager, Tolaram Group, Mr Tope Ashiwaju, said the competition would make people to be creative with what they know best.
“Apart from the healthy living we preach, Nigerians are also becoming conscious of what they eat, where they eat and who makes food for them. You don’t need to go to school to learn to cook. The educational system is encouraging people these days not to depend only on formal education to succeed in Nigeria. In Nigeria, majority of people looking for job only have that paper certificate. This project is beyond the paper certificate but skills”, he said.

No comments:

Post a Comment