Your name: Harjot Singh
Where do you live: Flatbush, Auckland New Zealand
College: NZMA Auckland Central (previously known as NSIA Symonds Street)
What course did you complete? Diploma in Cookery Level 5
Current role/Employer: Chef de Partie, Degree Bar
What attracted you to study at NZMA?
I’ve been interested in cookery since I was at high school. I wanted to study abroad, and one of my friends suggested New Zealand. I was keen to enrol at NZMA because it has a reputation of being a really popular and good college. I also knew that NZMA has a really good success rate regarding students doing really well once they have their qualification.
How has your course at NZMA helped you?
This programme has really helped me learn the basics as I didn’t know much about cookery. But now I’m a professional!
Where are you working now? And what is your role?
I am the Chef de Partie at Degree Bar located at Auckland’s Viaduct, where I look after the main section. What is the most exciting aspect of your job? I love being creative and developing new seasonal dishes with seafood, especially prawns and fish. There’s such good produce in New Zealand, it’s inspiring to work with fresh ingredients to create tasty dishes.
How did you feel when you were coming to NZMA?
On my first day I was little nervous and scared because everything was new to me. But the atmosphere on campus was really friendly and made me feel comfortable. Then I relaxed and it helped me make friends from all around the world.
What was campus life like?
I really enjoyed being on campus at Sylvia Park. It was really good, I made lots of friends from New Zealand and all over the world. It was very different to where I come from, and I had a really good experience while studying there.
What were the highlights of your course?
Really good!! Level 5 was really enjoyable. I particularly like the last assessment where we needed to create menus for our practical test. It was a little hard, but it made me stop and think, and research about new recipes.
What is your career goal?
One day I would love to be a Head Chef at a great restaurant.
What is one life lesson you learnt during your study and work?
Throughout my course I’ve learnt that you never stop learning and practicing, and this make all the difference.