WVU Tech to launch two-year Hospitality (Culinary) degree program
Chef Devin Noor demonstrates bread prep in a WVU Tech test kitchen.
In a partnership with WVU Potomac State College, WVU Tech has begun offering a two-year Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in Hospitality (Culinary). Led by Chef Devin Noor, the program will train students in culinary arts, hospitality and business management to give graduates the skills they need to enhance their current career in the industry or to start their own operation.
"We're approaching the program from a very well-rounded mindset," said Noor. "We're covering cooking and kitchen essentials, of course, but we're working in subjects like business and accounting to make sure our students can put their training to work in a sustainable way. That administrative mindset will empower them to be more confident in their careers. It allows them to approach their work with a strong understanding of what keeps a business running."
Students in the program will study on WVU Tech's campus in Beckley, where they'll have access to dedicated culinary training facilities. They'll work in multiple test kitchens using commercially available equipment and engage in specialty training - everything from smoking and sous video to gelato-making and carving 300-pound ice blocks into decorative shapes.
Noor said that the program is open to anyone who wants to boost their career in hospitality.
"Like any good kitchen, we're looking for people with a variety of skills and experience," she said. "Students fresh out of high school will be learning alongside others who may have been in the industry for decades. It's that blend of backgrounds, training and people that we hope will give our program a unique environment where new, fresh ideas are constantly evolving."
As a WVU Potomac State College program offered on the Beckley campus, students may also be eligible for the West Virginia Invests Grant Program, which can cover the cost of tuition and fees.
For Noor, that mix of opportunity and affordability could mean great things for Southern West Virginia.
"We're looking at a chance to provide students with excellent income potential in a field that will allow them to stay here at home. For local restaurants, resorts and hotels, there will be a new wave of highly trained professionals to keep their businesses running smoothly. And for the economy in this part of the state, we're seeing an opportunity to add value to the tourism and hospitality industry that already does so much in this region," she said.
Find out more or apply for the new program at wvutech.edu.