Dynamic Culinary Partnership Nurtures Aspiring Chefs

A partnership between Philippine Culinary Cup 2013 champion Global Academy and Raintree is raising the bar in developing dynamic well-rounded culinarians who are making waves in the country’s culinary scene.

Founded in 2007 by Chef Rob Pengson and Chef Benjamin Ledesma, Jr., Global Academy has gained wide recognition in the global culinary arena. “Global Academy students gain a competitive edge through their courses and valuable real-world experience from our restaurant partners,” said Ledesma, Global Academy CFO and president.

Fostering talent and industry expertise, Global Academy’s internship program with Raintree is one of the most comprehensive in the field. “Since 2009, Raintree has helped mold our aspiring chefs with a comprehensive internship program,” Ledesma said.

Raintree includes three business divisions: Foodparks, a food service company specializing in development of unique high-end food court operations; Raintree restaurants including Mr. Jones, Stella, Saboten, Chelsea Market and Cafe, and Museum Café, among others, and Raintree Hospitality Group, which manages hotels and resort operations.

“Raintree does not limit interns’ learning in one station; we have a very holistic approach,” said Alfred Adolfo II, Raintree director for human resources. “Students get to work from one station to another, giving them a chance to grasp the inner workings of a restaurant.” He explained that about 80 percent of their internship program is dedicated to the kitchen, and the rest to support services.

The number one quality they look for in an aspiring culinarian is attitude, according to Adolfo. It is one thing to develop the knowledge and skills of the students, but it takes the right attitude to succeed. Global Academy and Raintree share a commitment to ensuring the quality of chefs they produce, which reflects the culture and values of both their organizations.

Raintree provides equal opportunities for aspiring culinarians regardless of age. “We often encounter restaurants or hotels that do not accept older students, but Raintree gives aspiring students of any age an opportunity to pursue their dreams as long as they have the right attitude and work ethic,” said Tinay Reyes-Sola, Global Academy Internship Manager.

“We have a trusting relationship with Global Academy,” said Adolfo, “They have been very consistent with the quality of students they endorse to us, and I believe that our partnership will continue to grow and remain strong. Our vision of producing world-class culinarians who will transform the Philippine culinary industry is well aligned. We see a bright future ahead for our aspiring chefs.”

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