POSTED: Wednesday, October 16, 2013 - 6:30pm
UPDATED: Thursday, October 17, 2013 - 8:34am
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — Acclaimed chef Chris Wadsworth and his wife Sommer are working day and night to make the rooms in De La Ronde Hall ready for Chris' latest culinary adventure, a teaching kitchen.
"This is 'what do you really have to know to survive in this business and what is your boss really looking for? And they get that from somebody who's been in the business for a long time," explained Wadsworth.
But this is no ordinary culinary school, it's called Triumph Kitchen. That's what Chris and Sommer are hoping for, triumphs for the young adults who choose to go through the program, free of charge.
"It gives them that opportunity to actually come in, work with a professional chef, have the opportunity to get into this industry with a little bit of training behind them and keep them on the right path, instead of taking that wrong turn to the street or doing nothing, whatever it be," said Wadsworth.
He's gearing the program towards inner-city kids who may not have the direction they need. As a high school drop-out himself, Wadsworth said he wants to set kids up for success no matter what their backgrounds.
"I did the same thing, 15 years old, dropped out of high school, decided I was going to just cook or I was going to do something with my life but it wasn't going to be in the classroom. So I sat back and thought about, 'how can I make a difference and how can I make this work?' They get to work with a professional chef and a professional teacher everyday, it's just appealing. And then they're off to a good thing," explained Wadsworth.
And when he sends his students out of the door, into the real world, he hopes they will leave with a new path and purpose.
"I want these teens and youths to walk out of here with their heads held high, walk into a job interview and say, 'you know what I just worked for 14 weeks with a chef and his wife who cared for nothing but the best for us and we're going to give you everything we got,'" shared Wadsworth.