The future of the hospitality industry is inviting the community to a unique dining experience on Nelson’s Tenth Street Campus that combines education with exceptional cuisine and service.
Scholars Dining Room is a culinary escape where students in the Professional Cook Program and the Resort & Hotel Management (RHOT) Program combine for six weeks of themed menus that put learners to the test in an experiential classroom environment.
“The students in both of these programs are really awesome,” says Michelle Richards, a second-year RHOT student. “People who come for a meal will get great food and great service.”
Starting on October 11 and 12, Scholars welcomes guests to Mary Hall on the Tenth Street Campus for six weeks on Thursdays and Fridays. Each week features a different culinary theme with a line-up that includes Asian, French, Canadian, seafood and the always popular Christmas dinner buffet at the end of November.
A wonderful time is guaranteed, but so is the odd gaffe. Instructors and students don’t promise perfection, so a dash of patience from guests is always appreciated.
“You don’t learn unless you do it,” says Bria Bell, who grew up in Nelson and has returned to Selkirk College to formalize her hospitality training. “You can get thrown to the wolves in the industry and you will have to learn it, but through the program you get to learn step-one through to step-six. This way you make sure it’s done right and you are not making up any tricks of your own that may not be the correct way.”
Students in both the Professional Cook Program and RHOT Program arrive to Selkirk College with a variety of experience. From recent high school graduates to mature students with years of industry training, the spectrum of learners is working towards either their Red Seal certification or a diploma.
Second-year RHOT student Bill Huynh arrived to Nelson from Vietnam in 2017 after discovering Selkirk College online. The 25-year-old was educated in telecommunications in Vietnam, but wanted to follow in the footsteps of his mother who is a hotel manager. Though he had some banquet serving experience prior to moving to Canada, Huynh is thankful for the hands-on learning provided in the program.
“Everything was new to me, so getting to work in Scholars helped me a lot in my first year,” says Huynh, who has put extra effort into perfecting his English over the last year. “Having a place to practice is important and we really appreciate the guests who come for this experience.”
Like many of her classmates, Richards came into the program already well accustomed to the industry. Originally from Jamaica, she arrived to Canada in 2014 and has 17 years in the food and beverage industry. Though she went through post-secondary training in Jamaica after high school graduation, Richards enroled in Selkirk College to secure a formal Canadian education. Fresh off a required summer work term in the industry, Richards is happy to be back on campus and eager to work with classmates on providing a top-notch experience at the Tenth Street Campus.
“Getting to be exposed to serving guests at Scholars in the first-year really helps when you go out on your work term,” Richards says. “You have confidence and can become a shining star in this industry from the start.”
Reservations are now being accepted for the fall dining room schedule by calling 250.505.1395 or via the Selkirk College website at selkirk.ca/scholars-dining-room. You can also find all the menus for the different themes on the website. Cost per person for the four-course meal is $32 (plus tax).