There are fewer than 80 Certified Master Chefs in the world
Schoolcraft College will be the site of Segment 1 of the American Culinary Federation’s (ACF) Certified Master Chef® (CMC) exams starting Friday, March 18, through Monday, March 21, in the American Harvest restaurant in the VisTaTech Center.
A CMC is considered the highest level of the profession, and demonstrates mastery of culinary competence and expertise through education, experience, knowledge and skills consistent with the master chef level.
“Schoolcraft College was selected as an approved Certified Master Chef testing site by the American Culinary Federation,” said Jonathan Moosmiller, CMC and American Master Chefs Order (AMCO) President. “The criteria included excellence in educational programming and strong leadership. The Certified Master Chefs program has worked with Schoolcraft College for many years, assisting in providing CMC chefs as Schoolcraft Instructors. The American Master Chefs Order is proud to continue this partnership with Schoolcraft College and the American Culinary Federation.”
There are fewer than 80 Certified Master Chefs in the world, with Brian Beland, Schoolcraft College’s Department Chair of Culinary Arts, among those to hold this distinguished ranking. In addition, faculty member Joseph Decker has attained the ranking of Certified Master Pastry Chef® (CMPC).
“We are honored to welcome this group of exceptional chefs to Schoolcraft as they look to demonstrate, and validate, their mastery of cuisine in their pursuit of earning the Certified Master Chef designation,” Chef Beland said. “Schoolcraft College Culinary Arts students have benefited from the world-class kitchens and instructional environment for many years, and we are excited to share what we have the privilege to experience daily with them.
“Hosting the CMC exam is a great opportunity for the students in the program as well. The students are able to experience highest level of practical culinary certification first hand by supporting the exam candidates and evaluators as kitchen apprentices and hospitality support services. This gives the students personal interaction opportunities and experience in ‘the arena’ feeling the pressure and seeing the intense focus.”
The facilities in American Harvest include:
- 70-seat full-service restaurant
- 5 fully outfitted kitchen labs dedicated to the various skill competencies of the craft
- Collaboration with Schoolcraft Brewing and Distillation program
- Retail Café Market space
- Construction of a new Demonstration and Innovation Center recently approved with construction scheduled to begin later this year
To apply for the exam, candidates must already be a Certified Executive Chef or Certified Culinary Educator, provide a letter of recommendation from current CMCs or CMPCs, and have completed education courses on sanitation and food safety, management, cost management and wine.
The exam schedule begins on Friday, March 18, with Freestyle Cuisine. Healthy Cooking follows on Saturday, March 19, then Global Cuisines on Sunday, March 20. Pastries and Baking concludes the exam on Monday, March 21.
Schoolcraft College’s Proud Heritage of Culinary Arts
Herman Breithaupt is credited with establishing Schoolcraft College’s Culinary Arts program in 1966, with his son, Robert Breithaupt, directing the department later that year.
“We began the first year with 16 students,” Robert said. “After that we had a list of students waiting to get into the program, and it has continued that way to the present day.”*
Schoolcraft College is continuing to prepare its Culinary Arts students for the ever-evolving realities of the complex restaurant industry by updating several areas of the curriculum.
“With the help of industry experts who provided valuable feedback, data from surveys from students and employers, plus input from other valued sources within Schoolcraft College and beyond, we’ve adjusted our curriculum and programming to better train our students to become valued employees and leaders in the restaurant industry,” Chef Beland said.
The goal is to raise competency and improve skill sets in several key areas in cooking and operations, including:
- Apply nutritional concepts to menus
- Demonstrate fundamental cooking principles
- Perform advanced butchery skills
- Understand restaurant financial controls
- Incorporation of alcohol service and accountability
- Improve time management skills
- Increased focus on baking/pastry
To reflect the updated curriculum, the program will be called Professional Culinary Arts and offer the following:
- Professional Culinary Arts Skills Certificate – 21 credits
- Professional Culinary Arts Certificate – 43 credits
- Professional Culinary Arts Associate in Applied Science (AAS) Degree – 60-66 credits
The program is stackable to a Bachelor of Science Degree in Culinary and Dietary Operations and is certified by the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation (ACFEF).
*From Page 68 of “Reaching Out … A History of Schoolcraft College” by Samuel Hudson.