As published in www.hospitalitybusiness.co.nz on 11 May, 2015
Growing demand for NZMA’s hospitality, cookery and business programmes has sparked a massive expansion of the provider’s purpose-built Sylvia Park Campus.
Six additional classrooms, a large cyber suite and an additional floor of staff offices have just been added, along with two new state-of-the-art training kitchens, increasing the number of onsite commercial kitchens from three to five.
Jasbir Kaur, Deputy Campus Principal for Cookery, said the additional facilities will provide big benefits for students.“Students studying here will be exposed to all the latest industry equipment as well as different styles of kitchens. This will stand them in great stead when they enter the workforce,” she said.
“One of the new kitchens is a training and prep kitchen, while the other is a speciality kitchen, which has additional equipment such as a blast chiller and a combi oven. This kitchen will also be used by our pastry students to make things like chocolate sculptures, and we will use it for our demonstrations and masterclasses.”
Masterclasses are a regular highlight on NZMA’s training calendar. In June the new specialty kitchen will be put through its paces during a masterclass by Peter Gordon, while later this month Sai Hamsala – recently named the world’s best bartender – will be teaching his trade secrets to hospitality students in the training bar.
Mark Worsop (Divisional General Manager – ACG Tertiary & Careers Group) said NZMA’s enlarged Sylvia Park Campus would enable the provider to significantly grow its professional cookery, hospitality management, and business training offerings.“The expansion essentially increases student capacity by a minimum of 440 students a week,” he said. “That’s great news for industry. Currently New Zealand is crying out for skilled and career oriented chefs and front-of-house professionals, and managers in the café and restaurant sectors are in particularly hot demand.”
The campus opened its doors less than 18 months ago, giving tertiary training in the East Auckland suburbs a huge boost. Initially catering for 730 students each week, demand rapidly grew, and plans were soon in place for further development.
“This has happened very quickly and highlights that a focus on quality training and resources does lead to positive and sustainable growth. The completion of stage two is a reflection of increasing demand for NZMA’s programmes. Our international enrolments in particular have grown significantly over the past year and the expansion allows us to cater for this demand, whilst also helping to address skill shortages and growth within the hospitality industry.”