Alex’s culinary journey at CIC

Alexander Franco

Alexander Franco from Peru is studying his Certificate III in Commercial Cookery. He has shared his experience with us on deciding to change careers and why CIC was the right choice for him.

“I started a new career at the age of 29 and this was a challenge to me. Mark Sainsbury who is the executive chef of Hyatt Regency Hotel helped me to clarify my ideas to start a new career path. I will never forget what he told me “Don’t be afraid to start over”. After that chat I made my decision and I enrolled at Cambridge International College to commence my culinary journey.

The opportunity that Cambridge gives us to practice in a real kitchen can be challenging especially for those who have never stepped in a professional kitchen. I can still remember my first day at PCEC. The kitchen was massive, as big as a soccer field.  Our Chef instructor, Glenn, conducted an orientation and many of us got lost in the facilities as everything was so big and so new to us. More importantly, the feeling that I got that day was that there were unique chefs walking around. The sounds of the knives knocking the chopping boards and witnessing the executive chef Richard dancing in front of the students trying to break the ice, made me realise that this is the environment that I belong to, probably because I grew up in “Cevicheria” which is a small seafood restaurant at the side of the beach which my parents used to run in Peru, during the summer season.

I don’t know If I have taken the right direction to succeed in my life but I am 100% sure that I am enjoying what I am doing. The fact that Australia is a cosmopolitan country, it seems like a disadvantage as it doesn’t seem to have a culinary identity but it is young country rich in cultural diversity. Restaurants in Australia offer a variety of food representing the variety of cultures and the fusion of many.

Generally the student experience is amazing as we are learning from international chef instructors who have so much to offer from each of their cultures. It is indeed a great pleasure learning and contributing to this amazing experience. I am very grateful to Cambridge International College for providing me with this incredible experience to enable me to continue on my culinary journey.”


Find out more about our hospitality programs here.


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